Today most people live their life in a constant state of stress. However, our bodies were not designed to remain in this state for long periods of time. This constant pressure on our bodies can lead to adrenal fatigue, severe inflammation and chronic disease. Stress is thought to play a part in 90% of all illnesses today.
What is Stress?
Stress by definition is a mental or emotional strain or tension resulting from adverse or demanding circumstances. Stress begins in the alarm phase were the body exhibits a “fight or flight” response from the stressor. During this time the body increases its release of cortisol (stress hormone). This initial response can decrease the effectiveness of the immune system as the bodies energy has been redirected to deal with the stressor at large. Without the immune system working effectively the body becomes more susceptible to illness. In todays fast paced society, stress has become stagnant in people’s life, and the body remains in this alarm stage. When the body remains in this stage for too long, the body will eventually reach a state of exhaustion. By this time the immune system and the body’s ability to resist disease as been almost completely eliminated. Elevated cortisol levels and chronic stress can affect every system in your body, including your thyroid and adrenal glands. Cortisol is also known as the aging hormone. When your body enters into alarm phase, it stimulates your sympathetic nervous system as well as your adrenal glands. This results in decreased digestive secretions and increased blood pressure. Making you especially susceptible to disease and chronic illness.
Adaptogens to the rescue
Adaptogens normalize levels of cortisol in the body and help to support worn down adrenal glands. Adaptogens help to lower the amount of cortisol being released in the body, this allows for the adrenal glands to rest and for the body to redirect this energy to help support the regular maintenance of the body. Additionally, the sympathetic nervous system controls hundreds of pathways that are responsible for inflammation. Adaptogens are anti-inflammatory and an antioxidant. They help to keep inflammation in check, as chronic inflammation is the cause of many of the common health problems present today.
Our bodies seek balance, yet stress persistently throws us out of balance. That's why it's important to slow down and take the time to take care of ourselves. Adding adaptogens like American ginseng is the best preventative medicine available. Take care of your body, don’t wait until you are sick to seek out medicine.