A local organic tea farmer has a blend called “Inner Strength, for sustained energy”, of nettles, gingko biloba, American ginseng, and ashwagandha. The producer can suggest this effect because it’s a blend of adaptogens, commonly known as tonics.

“Adaptogens are associated with an increased capacity to adapt to stress and challenges in daily life, whether the challenges start from mental, emotional or physical sources”, according to Guido Mase in his book The Wild Medicine Solution-Healing with Aromatics, Bitters, and Tonic Herbs. Any response to stressors determines its impact. We can lessen our perception of the problem by not allowing the stressor to have an effect or shore up resiliency to endure the challenge longer.

The adaptogens in this blend, as with most adaptogens in varying degrees, help to protect the liver and brain from the effects of free radicals. Ginseng has been used for centuries to increase stamina. Gingko and ginseng have been found to relieve headaches, brain fog, and mild depression. Nettles are a source of many phytonutrients, including all of the essential amino acids, quercetin, coumarins, and fatty acids. All of this blend have polysaccharides that support interleukin-10’s effect to reduce C-reactive protein (CRP)- a biomarker for inflammation. Currently, the CRP level is a severity indicator of COVID cases.

I have highlighted only a few adaptogenic benefits from their phytochemicals. Commercial pharmaceuticals have been developed to dramatically enhance the effectiveness of many phytochemicals. It is therefore wise to consult a healthcare professional who is knowledgeable in the herb, nutrient, and drug interactions, especially while on prescribed medications and when considering herbal medicine.

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