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What are adaptogens?

Adaptogens help reduce the magnitude of our stress response and help us cope better with day-to-day challenges.   The term ‘adaptogen’ was first coined in 1940 by a Russian scientist named Nikolay Lazarev.  Initially, adaptogens were named as such because they improved the resistance of the body to physiological stress. 

Adaptogens are thought to be natural compounds that help the body avoid the effects of stress.  Adaptogenic herbs have been used in Eastern Medicine for hundreds of years, and are making a comeback today.

Adaptogens work by changing your body’s stress response (Liao, et al., 2018) to make you more resilient to stressors.  When our bodies are under stress, we release high levels of the stress hormone cortisol.  Cortisol helps mobilize energy resources to help you overcome the stressor.  However, too much cortisol can cause health problems such as depression and contribute to chronic disease.

Adaptogens exhibit properties that can help protect the brain’s cells, reduce fatigue, support antidepressive and anxiolytic functions, and stimulate the central nervous system.  Many studies have shown that adaptogens can also increase mental functioning despite stress and fatigue, and help improve attention and reduce mental exhaustion (Panossian and Wikman, 2010).

Adaptogens are Naturally Found in Ginseng

Many adaptogens are common foods we eat every day.  Ginseng is one great source of adaptogens.  Korean red ginseng has been used for centuries in Asia to improve the body’s natural defenses and protect against stress and illness. 

Ginseng: An Adaptogen that Fights Adrenal Fatigue

The adaptogens found in ginseng work by preventing adrenal fatigue.  Adrenal fatigue occurs when the body’s adrenal cortex is hyperactivated in the stress response, releasing too much cortisol.  Adaptogens are phytochemicals, meaning that they are found in plants.  Adaptogens encourage homeostasis – or balance – in the body.

While the precise mechanisms that lend ginseng its adaptogenic and anti-stress properties are not fully understood, scientific evidence suggests that ginseng acts both on the adrenal glands and the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis.  Ginseng may stimulate production of the hormone ACTH, which regulates the production of cortisol and other hormones.  Ginseng may also stimulate subsequent release of the stress hormone cortisol, and may also improve binding of corticosteroids to certain regions in the brain.

Adaptogenic Properties of Korean Red Ginseng

Korean red ginseng is a type of ginseng which is cultivated and aged for a timeframe of several years in order to improve the nutrients and compounds contained in the ginseng root.  Scientific studies have lent support to the biological and, specifically, adaptogenic effects of ginseng, and Korean red ginseng specifically.  Korean red ginseng is a common adaptogen “considered to be relatively safe even in large amounts and over a long-term administration” (Lee, et al., 2019).  Korean red ginseng can improve the body’s stress response as an adaptogen, boosting immune function as well as antioxidant activity.  The adaptogenic compounds in Korean red ginseng support memory, blood circulation, and fatigue recovery as well.

 

Korea Ginseng Corp

Only the best Korean red ginseng is sold by Korea Ginseng Corp.  With a variety of ginseng products such as teas, candies, extracts, and more, Korea Ginseng Corp offers a great selection of ginseng foods and supplements which can help you support your immune system and live your best life.  Korea Ginseng Corp’s skincare products line,  Donginbi, can also help radiate your internal well-being for the external world.