Let's dive even deeper into adaptogens this week.
Quick refresher: Adaptogens are herbs that help the body adapt to (and defend against) the effects of stress in your body. They help your body get to a state of homeostasis (balance).
Ok...so what are the four N's?
Adaptogens have been used in traditional medicine for thousands of years, but the four N's are a more recent part of the story...
Back in the 1940's and 1950's Russian scientists ran over 3000 clinical trials, identified about a dozen adaptogens, and defined "adaptogen" utilizing the 3 N's (since then a 4th has been added)...
Nontoxic: They have no negative side effects in normal therpeutic doses
- As always, everyone is different and you should always consult your physician.
Non-specific: They have a non-specific effect on the body. They can either slow down your body or rev it up depending on what's needed.
Normalizing: They help normalize physiological function and maintain a state of homeostasis.
Neuroendocrine: They impact the neuroendocrine system (nervous and endocrine systems).
This is what makes an adaptogen so special. Not just any herb or mushroom can be classified this way.
It's pretty darn cool.