What are Adaptogens?

Adaptogens help us adapt and build resistance to the stress we face in our day to day lives.  

For thousands of years they have been used as Functional Botanicals in Ayurveda and Traditional Chinese Medicine to support the body into a state of balance (homeostasis).

    • Energy & Sleep 
    • Hormonal Balance
    • Depression & Anxiety 
    • Cognition & Clarity  

What Makes an Adaptogen?

In the 1940s Soviet scientists went searching for substances to enhance longevity and performance and they discovered Adaptogens. 

Defining Criteria for Adaptogens: 

    • Non Toxic without causing negative side-effects to the body or mind. 

    • Non-Specific producing a response in the body which provides a defence, resistance or decrease in sensitivity to multiple stressors — in a way that builds up "adaptive energy" and protection.

    • Normalizing influence on the regulatory systems in the body that enhance it's capacity toward homeostasis. Their bi-directional effects have the capability to tone down over-functioning systems and tone up under-functioning systems. 

    Why Should You Take Adaptogens?

    Adaptogens safely bring us back into balance & alignment by helping to build resistance and become attuned to handling the negative affects of stress.

    They fit easily into busy lifestyles and can be consumed as teas, tinctures, pills, powders or foods.

      • Adaptogens work to nourish your unique physiology 
      • Adaptogens to support acute stress on the body
      • Adaptogens help to preventatively build up vitality

    Adaptogens & Well-Being

    Well-being is all about the journey toward finding a balance in the mind, body & spirit. It can be a challenge in today's world, but the benefits of Adaptogens enhance our ability to resist stress.

    Benefits of Adaptogens:

      • Antioxidant Actions
      • Anti-Inflammatory Actions
      • Anabolic & Muscle Rebuilding 
      • Anti-Fatigue & Energy
      • Mood Balancing 
      • Cognitive Function & Performance
      • Hormonal Balancing 

    But, Adaptogens aren't a silver bullet! They're only one piece of a broader holistic lifestyle, and they take time to build up our systems in order to truly support our well-being.

    How Do Adaptogens Work?  

    Chronic stress throws the body's regulatory systems out of balance. 

    Although our bodies were built to react to the stress caused by changes in our environment, the impacts of different types of stress via our modern lifestyle often leave us with undesirable changes to our hormones, immune system and brain.

    Many Causes of Stress:

      • Physical
      • Emotional 
      • Biological 
      • Chemical
      • Nutritional
      • Environmental 

    Thankfully, we can turn to the wisdom of nature to help us become resilient on our journey toward more balance and well-being! 

    The Wisdom of Adaptogens

    Adaptogens have been used as traditional remedies for thousands of years.

    Ayurveda references Adaptogens as Rasayanas, which are herbs with rejuvenative properties. Traditional Chinese Medicine calls them Qi Tonics, which are herbs with strengthening & protective effects. Western herbalists believe that Adaptogens support the re-regulation of disharmonies in the body (Winston & Maimes, 2007). 

    Research & Adaptogens

    Modern research is working to confirm what this class of plants is best used for, and the underlying mechanisms of each. 

    Some plants already have results showing that "Adaptogens exhibit neuro-protective, anti-fatigue, anti-depressive, anxiolytic, nootropic and CNS stimulating activity” (Panossian & Wickman, 2010). 

    Some Adaptogens are also known to have stress-protective activity in the body via the centralized HPA (hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis) (Panossian et. al, 2009).

    The adaptogenic plants work at a molecular level with the nervous, hormonal (endocrine), and immune systems to re-regulate how we adapt to our environment, meeting the demands of different types of stress.

    As a result of the improved communication between the three glands of the HPA system (hypothalamus, pituitary and adrenals) and the other regulatory system in the body known as the SAS, the different functions and systems in the body including energy, digestion, immunity, mood and more all have the capacity to become re-regulated. 

    Considering the pace and stress of our modern day lifestyle is unlikely to change anytime soon, this is good news!  

    Our Adaptogens 

    Kite Sparkling Botanical blends are thoughtfully crafted and made by steeping Adaptogens and botanicals designed for function, taste and nourishment. Each organic blend is slow-steeped over time to infuse the beneficial compounds, flavors, minerals, antioxidants, amino acids, and natural energetics of the plants into the water. 

    Tulsi (Holy Basil) 

    Well known in ancient Ayurveda, Tulsi (also known as Holy Basil) is referred to as the “Elixir of Life”  and has been used to ensure health & well-being for over 3000 years in India. Seen to be the most sacred of plants, it's known to provide calmness, clarity and soothing energy to help maintain balance in the body. Kite’s Sparkling Botanical blend Align uses three types of Tulsi leaves (Krishna, Vana, Rama) from India. Tulsi tea is known for its strong aroma and sometimes is described as having a spicy flavor. 

    Ashwagandha Root 
    A staple of Ayurveda and used for thousands of years, Ashwagandha Root (also known as Indian Ginseng) is known to be a calming Adaptogen used to help with stress, nervousness and anxiety by enhancing endocrine function. Kite’s Sparkling Botanical blend Unwind uses Ashwagandha Root from India. A nightshade root, it's known to have a bitter, astringent and earthy flavor. It's  Sanskrit name translates to “horse-like sweat odour” referring to it's pungent scent while it's Latin name means “sleep-inducing” referring to it's restorative properties, 

    Licorice Root
    Used as a long-time food and medicine in China and the Middle East, Licorice Root's Latin name translates to "sweet root" and has traditionally been used as an Adaptogen to help with digestion, fatigue, stress and immune support. All three of  Kite’s Sparkling Sparkling Botanicals,  RiseAlign and Unwind include Licorice Root. 
     
    Moringa
    For over 3,000 years, cultures in different parts of Asia have used Moringa for  healthy skin, mental alertness and general well-being. It has been considered as the “most nutrient rich plant on earth” with 90 nutrients and 46 antioxidants and is used in RiseAlign and Unwind. The Moringa used in the infusions is sourced from the foothills of the mighty southern mountain ranges in southern India, which, thanks to its soil and climate is considered the best region in the world to grow Moringa.

     

    Sources:

    Panossian A, Wikman G, Kaur P, Asea A. Adaptogens exert a stress-protective effect by modulation of expression of molecular chaperones. Phytomedicine. 2009;16(6-7):617-622. doi:10.1016/j.phymed.2008.12.003

    Panossian A, Wikman G. Effects of Adaptogens on the Central Nervous System and the Molecular Mechanisms Associated with Their Stress-Protective Activity. Pharmaceuticals (Basel). 2010;3(1):188-224. Published 2010 Jan 19. doi:10.3390/ph3010188

    Winston, D., & Maimes, S. (2007). Adaptogens: Herbs for strength, stamina, and stress relief. Rochester, Vt: Healing Arts Press.

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