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Criteria For Adaptogens

If you are into healthy and superfood products these days you must have come across the term: adaptogen.

Although the word adaptogen has been around for decades, it is sure having a come back lately.

So what are adaptogens and what can be called adaptogen?

"The core essence of adaptogens is that they combat the negative effects of stress and improve resistance, thereby improving our health and well-being. Essentially, adaptogens help us to live with greater mental and physical endurance and vitality, while mitigating the cost of stressors and building our reserves through enhancing our regenerative (anabolic) capacities." Adaptogens in Medical herbalism by Donald  Yance

"An adaptogenic herb is traditionally regarded as one that meets the classical definition as described by Brekhman.

  • Adaptogens are safe with no significant side effects or contraindications.
  • Adaptogens have a general, nonspecific action to improve resistance to stress.
  • Adaptogens have a balancing, normalizing effect on body functions, regardless of the origin of disruption or the direction of the homeostatic disturbance."  Adaptogens in Medical herbalism by Donald  Yance

the importance of adaptogen is:  Adaptogenic herbs do not alter mood and rather optimize  the body function during times of stress. based on this definition although coffee (caffeine) gives us that boost it is actually not an adaptogen as it is addictive.

In other words adaptogens:

  • Reduce stress-induced damage
  • Exhibit stimulating effects, increasing performance in conditions of fatigue and generalized stress.
  • Do not possess a pharmacological drug withdrawal syndrome
  • Are mild in effect, do not perturb body functions from normal level, possess normalizing function.