In our fast-paced world, many people have tried different ways to increase energy and focus.
It might be energy drinks, caffeine, sugar and other stimulants for the quick fix, which in turn can bring on other symptoms, becoming a vicious cycle of increased nervousness, headaches, upset stomach, irritability, sleep issues, rapid heartbeat and dehydration. Exhaustion can feel permanent in between trying to meet deadlines, balancing work and family life, and social expectations.
Nurtura Health Naturopaths Colin and Olive Harris said adrenal fatigue, essentially a hormonal imbalance, can often be the culprit behind inexplicable daily exhaustion.
“Daily stress can set our adrenal glands, which help produce hormones and regulate our ‘fight-or-flight’ responses, out of balance. This can in turn impact our pituitary or hormone control and thyroid; the organ of metabolism,” Olive said.
“Herbal medicine, and in particular ‘adaptogens’, are herbal pharmaceuticals which work to counteract the effects of stress in the body. Stress can cause very real physical changes in the body, negatively affecting the nervous system, hormonal system and immune system.”
Olive said adaptogens work by “hacking” the stress response in the body, which occurs in three stages.
“There is the alarm phase, when our bodies respond by increasing hormones like adrenaline that improves performance and increase our ability to concentrate. Then there is the resistance phase, where our body is literally resisting the stressor, so we feel energised and clearer and then comes the phase of exhaustion, where we have nothing left,” she said.
Olive said it was believed adaptogens act as neuroprotective, anti-fatigue, anti-depressive, cognitive enhancing and activity stimulating.
“At Nurtura Health, we have a large range of adaptogenic herbs with highest-grade effective ingredients, manufactured to ensure their effectiveness and stability,” she said.
Olive said an article by the Swedish Herbal Institute (Panossin and Wikman) concluded adaptogens may be regarded as a novel pharmacological category of anti-fatigue drugs.
“The most convincing evidence of the efficacy of adaptogens was found in studies related to its neuro-protective effects, improvements in mental performance and ability to concentrate during fatigue and in stressful conditions,” Olive said.
“If people are experiencing ongoing fatigue, it is certainly something our naturopaths at Nurtura Health can help address.”