By: Dr. Stephanie Bureau, ND
The ability to cope with life’s various stressors in a positive way is known as resilience, and it offers a wealth of benefits to health.1 Resilience in fact, is associated with greater satisfaction with life. Conversely, a lack of resilience hinders our ability to handle stress, and exposure to chronic stress is associated with high blood pressure, sleep disturbances, digestive issues, and a weakened immune system.2
While some people are naturally born resilient, resilience is a skill you can learn and strengthen over time. By applying some basic stress reduction techniques, such as meditation, breath work, yoga and exercise, as well as adhering to a clean, colorful and varied diet that includes plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, ample lean protein and a healthy daily dose of essential fatty acids, resilience is certainly attainable for all. Certain Natural Health Supplements can also be extremely helpful to help bolster our overall resistance to everyday stressors.
Supplements for resilience
Given the current context, it should come as no surprise that the demand for stress support formulas has been on the rise! Indeed, within the Health Food sector, mental health stress supplements have grown +8% 3, while within the FDM sector, Natural Health Supplements for Stress have grown +55% 4; considerable growth by any standards!
When it comes to stress support supplements, nothing quite beats adaptogens. For those less familiar, adaptogens are a unique class of medicinal plants that help rebalance, restore, and protect the body in myriad ways; most notably by supporting the body’s natural stress response.5 Adaptogens have often been compared to thermostats, in that they can adjust according to your particular needs at any given moment: i.e., they can either calm you or elevate your energy according to your needs, without overstimulating the system.
Research in fact, has shown that adaptogens help support mental focus and stamina6; relieve symptoms of mental fatigue and stress6; support cognitive function6; support physical stamina7; and temporarily relieve symptoms of stress6.
Some of the most well-researched adaptogens include:
A plant that grows in cold regions and at high altitudes in Europe and Asia, Rhodiola has shown to increase resistance to chemical, biological, and physical stressors. Studies tell us that rhodiola rosea extract offers comprehensive treatment of stress-related symptoms and can prevent chronic stress and stress-related complications.
Ashwagandha is a small evergreen shrub, is recognized as an adaptogenic herb. Research has shown that ashwagandha root extract can reduce symptoms of chronic stress by 30% to 44% and decreases cortisol levels by 22% to 28% compared with baseline. Clinical research has also demonstrated that ashwagandha extract can improve sleep quality.
Schisandra is a shrub native to northern and northeast China that has a well-established use as an adaptogen that helps strengthen resistance to stress, bolster energy, and increase physical performance, endurance and coordination.
Astragalus is widely distributed in temperate and arid climates. It is used in Herbal Medicine as an adaptogen to help increase energy and resistance to stress in case of mental and physical fatigue related to stress.
Eleutherococcus senticosus is native to southeastern Russia, northern China, Korea, and Japan and is widely recognized as an adaptopgen. Siberian ginseng is often recommended to help relieve feelings of fatigue, speed up recovery, as well as help improve mental and physical performance associated with physical and/or psychological stress.
Gamma-aminobutyric acid is an amino acid, and the main inhibitory neurotransmitter. GABA has been shown to promote temporary relaxation. Studies, in fact tell us that GABA improves subjective calmness and worry scores, as well as reduces cortisol, our primary stress hormone.
Choline is an essential nutrient related to B-complex vitamins. It is also the precursor of acetylcholine and is involved in brain development, neurotransmission and signaling. Studies have shown that choline is essential for optimal brain development and influences cognitive function in later life.
NEW from Progressive: Resilient Mind
Progressive Resilient Mind is a savvy blend of a variety of adaptogenic herbs, each offering their own distinct benefits to health. As such, Progressive Resilient Mind can help support the stress response in a myriad ways: used to help increase energy and resistance to stress; as a tonic to help relieve general weakness/fatigue and/or to aid during recovery; to help improve mental and/or physical performance after periods of mental and/or physical exertion; to help support cognitive function such as mental focus and mental stamina; as an adaptogen to help to temporary relieve symptoms of stress (such as mental fatigue and sensation of weakness). 21
As a complex adaptogenic blend, Progressive Resilient Mind is ideal for your customers that are looking to help increase their energy and improve their physical performance. The mix of ingredients is also wonderful to help support cognitive function and improve mental fatigue by increasing resistance to everyday stress.
As we have seen, there is an increasing demand for natural stress support supplements across channels, so it’s no surprise that there are also a lot of formulas to choose from. Progressive Resilient Mind stands out from the crowd with its synergistic combination of Ashwagandha, GABA, Astragalus, Schisandra Berry, Siberian Ginseng, Rhodiola, and Choline Bitartrate, that gives the body all of the adaptogenic support it needs, exactly when it needs it!
Discover Progressive Resilient Mind today, and help your customers Ramp up their Resilience!
Written By: Stephanie Bureau N.D.
1. Harvard Health. Ramp up your resilience. Accessed Feb 28, 2021 at: https://www.health.harvard.edu/mind-and-mood/ramp-up-your-resilience.
2. Habib Yaribeygi, Yunes Panahi, Hedayat Sahraei, Thomas P. Johnston, Amirhossein Sahebkar. The impact of stress on body function: A review. EXCLI J. 2017; 16: 1057–1072. Published online 2017 Jul 21. doi: 10.17179/excli2017-480
3. Health First Network, January 2020 December 2020 vs January 2019 December 2019 (entire Network).
4. Neilson. National Excl Nfld GB+DR+MM. Latest 52 weeks | Period Ending 4WE Dec 26, 2020.
5. Panossian A et al. 2009. Adaptogens exert a stress-protective effect by modulation of expression of molecular chaperones. Phytomedicine 2009. Jun: 16(6-7);617-22. doi: 10.1016/j.phymed.2008.12.003. Epub 2009 Feb 1.
6. Mental focus / mental stamina / mental fatigue related to stress / cognitive function / temp. Relieve symptoms of stress. Health Canada. Rhodiola – Rhodiola rosea Monograph. Accessed May 19, 2020 at: http://webprod.hc-sc.gc.ca/nhpid-bdipsn/atReq.do?atid=rhodiol&lang=eng
7. Physical stamina. Health Canada. Eleuthero – Eleutherococcus senticosus Monograph. Accessed May 19, 2020 at: http://webprod.hc-sc.gc.ca/nhpid-bdipsn/atReq.do?atid=eleuthero&lang=eng
8. Natural Medicines Database. Rhodiola monograph. Accessed Feb 17, 2021 at: https://naturalmedicines.therapeuticresearch.com/databases/food,-herbs-supplements/professional.aspx?productid=883
9. Anghelescu IG, Edwards D, Seifritz E, Kasper S. Stress management and the role of Rhodiola rosea: a review. Int J Psychiatry Clin Pract. 2018 Nov;22(4):242-252. doi: 10.1080/13651501.2017.1417442. Epub 2018 Jan 11. PMID: 29325481.
10. Natural Medicines Database. Ashwagandha monograph. Accessed Feb 17, 2021 at: https://naturalmedicines.therapeuticresearch.com/databases/food,-herbs-supplements/professional.aspx?productid=953
11. Natural Medicine Database. Schisandra monograph. Accessed Feb 19, 2021 at:https://naturalmedicines.therapeuticresearch.com/databases/food,-herbs-supplements/professional.aspx?productid=376
12. Natural Medicine Database. Astragalus monograph. Accessed Feb 17, 2021 at: https://naturalmedicines.therapeuticresearch.com/databases/food,-herbs-supplements/professional.aspx?productid=963
13. Health Canada. Astragalus monograph. Accessed Feb 17, 2021 at: http://webprod.hc-sc.gc.ca/nhpid-bdipsn/atReq.do?atid=astragalus.astragale&lang=eng
14. Natural Medicine Database. Jamieson Eleuthrococcus senticosus monograph. Accessed Feb 17, 2021 at: https://naturalmedicines.therapeuticresearch.com/databases/food,-herbs-supplements/professional.aspx?productid=985
15. Kuo J, Chen KW, Cheng IS, Tsai PH, Lu YJ, Lee NY. The effect of eight weeks of supplementation with Eleutherococcus senticosus on endurance capacity and metabolism in human. Chin J Physiol. 2010 Apr 30;53(2):105-11. doi: 10.4077/cjp. 2010.amk018. PMID: 21793317.
16. Natural Medicine Database. GABA monograph. Accessed Feb 17, 2021 at: https://naturalmedicines.therapeuticresearch.com/databases/food,-herbs-supplements/professional.aspx?productid=464
17. Health Canada. Cognitive Function monograph. Accessed Feb 17, 2021 at: http://webprod.hc-sc.gc.ca/nhpid-bdipsn/atReq.do?atid=fonc.cognitive.func&lang=eng
18. Hepsomali P, Groeger JA, Nishihira J, Scholey A. Effects of Oral Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA) Administration on Stress and Sleep in Humans: A Systematic Review. Front Neurosci. 2020; 14:923. Published 2020 Sep 17. doi:10.3389/fnins.2020.00923
19. Natural Medicine Database. Choline monograph. Accessed Feb 17, 2021 at: https://naturalmedicines.therapeuticresearch.com/databases/food,-herbs-supplements/professional.aspx?productid=436
20. Linus Pauling Institute. Micronutrient Information Centre. Cognitive Function in Depth. Accessed Feb 19, 2021 at: https://lpi.oregonstate.edu/mic/health-disease/cognitive-function#choline-deficiency. Health Canada. Choline monograph. Accessed Feb 17, 2021 at: http://webprod.hc-sc.gc.ca/nhpid-bdipsn/atReq.do?atid=choline&lang=eng
21. Health Canada Monograph NPN 80107711. Accessed Feb 12,2021 at: https://health-products.canada.ca/lnhpd-bdpsnh/info.do?licence=80107711