You have heard of super foods but have you ever heard of super herbs? Just the word “super” conveys that these herbs are special, in fact, they are extraordinary. Super herbs have been used for thousands of years to promote health and well being.
Super herbs have two impacts on the body – they are adaptogenic or tonifying. Adaptogenic herbs bring balance to the body while tonifying herbs facilitate strength. Both balance and strength are necessary for lasting health.
Super herbs are differentiated from medicinal herbs. Medicinal herbs are taken for a short time to rectify a specific medical condition, while super herbs are taken over a longer period of time to nurture the entire body.
Super herbs are generally used in combination with each other to bring out potencies of each herb. Two or three super herbs are usually taken at the same time for the best overall effect.
Adaptogenic herbs are known as balancing herbs, and work to bring overall balance. If you are stressed you will feel calmer if you are tired you will feel energized and so on. These herbs go directly to the area in the body that needs help. Adaptogenic herbs are used to help improve the body’s tolerance to stress no matter where it comes from, food, toxins, too much work or illness.
Adaptogenic herbs do not heal disease, but they provide the right tools for the body to heal itself. They go to work balancing metabolism, enzyme activity, hormonal imbalance and cellular respiration. These herbs are not stimulating like caffeine but rather normalizing. They bring the body back to home base, so to speak.
Tonic herbs encourage energy while the strengthen and instill vitality. These herbs bring about slow but lasting effects as they work to nurture particular organs or systems. Tonic herbs build up immunity, improve hormone function and nerve functions. They provide vital vitamins, minerals and flavonoids to the body,
Five Super Herbs
Brahmi (Indian Ayurvedic) – If you have a demanding work or school life where you have to retain a great deal of information, this herb could be very beneficial. It is a strong ayurvedic herb that enhances memory, attention span, mental clarity, awareness and learning new concepts. Brahmi works to improve communication between the right and left brain to maximize brain power.
Suma( South American) – Used by the people of the Amazon for centuries this herb is an adaptogen that works well to balance stress. Also known as an aphrodisiac, this herb contains vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and 19 amino acids. It contains 152 plant chemicals including iron, magnesium and zinc. Athletes who wish to develop strong muscles may take suma.
Schizandra (Chinese Medicine) – Known as one of the most respected of all super herbs, this plant has been used in Chinese Medicine for thousands of years. Berries are sweet, hot, tart, salty and bitter.
This is a sign that it works on all five organ systems in the body. It has been used for breakdowns caused by stress and helps to rebuild stress resistance. This herb is also known for its beautifying effects on skin, hair and nails.
Triphala (Indian Ayurvedic) – Known as a detoxifier, this super herb is especially good at revitalizing digestion and the absorption of nutrients by the intestines. It is extremely mild and can be used over a long period of time with no complications. Triphala cleanses fat tissue, muscles and blood.
He shou wu (Chinese Medicine) -This super herb is used to address issues associated with aging such as hair loss, white hair, atherosclerosis and elevated cholesterol. It is known to increase libido and calm the nervous system while strengthening the liver and kidneys. Many believe that it enhances Chi or energy flow in the body.
As always, check with a healthcare practitioner who understands herbal/natural treatments before using any herbs.
-The Alternative Daily