Jun 13 2023
The lowdown on adaptogens
We’ve been using adaptogens in our granolas since 2016, when we introduced maca powder into one of our blends. As with anything ‘alternative’, we know the jury is often out when it comes to clarifying exactly what adaptogenic ingredients can do for us. But the science - combined with use of these ingredients throughout history - show that they can provide positive functional benefits for the body and brain that are particularly valid for the modern lifestyle. Used for thousands of years in Ayurvedic and Chinese medicine, adaptogens offer a natural and holistic approach to nurturing the body and mind that can support us in many areas of our lives. From enhancing energy, boosting mood and improving focus, they offer a wholesome, 360 approach to wellness that is fundamentally different to many of the options offered by modern medicine. Whether you’ve been using adaptogenic ingredients for some time or starting to look at them as a route to improved wellness, we break down the benefits of the adaptogens we use in our Nootropic granola so you can make an informed choice when it comes to purchasing them. Our adaptogens and their functions:Alpha-Lipoic Acid (ALA)This naturally occurring compound is made in the body and serves vital functions at cellular level such as energy production, protecting brain cells from free radical damage and improving memory.Find it in EnergizeAshwagandhaAn adaptogenic botanical that helps relieve stress and fatigue, whilst restoring energy and boosting concentration. As an adaptogen, it helps your entire body by normalizing blood sugar and boosting insulin sensitivity. Find it in CalmCaffeineUsed in partnership with L-Theanine, caffeine can help to relieve stress, improve cognition, boost mood and focus. The ideal support for a day of demanding tasks or challenging workouts!Find it in EnergizeCreatineCreatine is a chemical found naturally in the body. Made up of three core amino acids, it provides immediate fuel for muscles, helping to boost physical performance. Vegetarians and vegans typically have lower levels of creatine as it’s mostly found in foods like red meat and seafood. Find it in Body & SoulGinkgo BilobaGinkgo biloba (also known as maidenhair) is a tree native to China that has been grown for thousands of years and utilised in a variety of ways. As a nootropic, Ginkgo has been shown to be beneficial for heart health, brain function, and eye health, along with several other conditions.Find it in Body & SoulGinsengPanax Ginseng is a perennial plant that grows in the mountains of East Asia and has been used for centuries to support memory function, improve mood, lower anxiety levels and boost stamina and endurance.Find it in Body & Soul, Energize and Absolute VeganLion’s ManeThese large white shaggy mushrooms grow in Asia, Europe and North America and contain bioactive substances that can bring multiple benefits to the brain, heart and gut. These include improved focus and attention, brain cell regeneration, support with depression and anxiety and managing neurological problems. Find it in Calm and EnergizeMatcha Green Tea: L-TheanineL-Theanine contains healthy bioactive compounds that work quickly to increase dopamine and serotonin, otherwise known as the ‘feel good’ chemicals in your brain. It’s also been shown to control & regulate cortisol, which can support with burning fat and help to prevent cardiovascular disease. Find it in Calm and EnergizeMacaMaca is known for elevating mood, increasing energy and endurance, boosting learning and memory, as well as increasing libido! Find it in Body & SoulOat StrawWorking to calm and strengthen the nervous system, Oat Straw can help improve attention, cognition, concentration and focus, as well as optimising dopamine and testosterone levels. Other benefits include promoting quality sleep and reducing anxiety.Find it in Calm A note about our blends:We formulate our recipes with ingredients at 20-50% of the recommended daily intake. Anyone with specific health conditions (pregnancy, diabetes and Alzheimer's) of those taking prescribed medication should always seek dietary advice when taking adaptogens.