8 Powerful Adaptogenic Herbs for Stress Management

Stress manifests differently in each of us. From anxiety and depression to pain and weight gain, our bodies have multiple responses to stress. Fortunately, a single herb can effectively and simultaneously address several symptoms. Herbal remedies are often without the side effects of many prescriptions drugs.

Below are eight powerful herbs for people suffering from anxiety, depression, detachment, insomnia, weight gain, fatigue, and other stress symptoms.

Passionflower for detachment, anxiety, insomnia and weight gain

Passionflower tones the nervous system, fortifying the connection between the nerves and the brain. This is helpful for those whose stress manifests as feeling overwhelmed and detached from their bodies and emotions.

The herb calms anxiety, decreases insomnia and panic attacks by boosting the level of gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA) in the brain. GABA lowers brain activity, promoting mental calm, relaxation and sleep.

Stress contributes to abdominal weight gain and fatigue by causing imbalances in blood sugar. Passionflower gently helps to rebalance insulin release.

Wood Betony for pain relief, detachment, and anxiety

Wood betony is a pain-relieving herb. Its chemical constituents are used to treat neuralgia (intense, intermittent pain along a nerve). The herb contains 79 compounds that are analgesic, anti-inflammatory, spasmolytic, and sedative.

Consuming this herb in teas, tinctures, and powders reduces symptoms of severe anxiety, panic attacks and palpitations cause by prolonged stress. It produces similar effects as the drug prescription pain relievers. Both promote synapses, connections between neurons, thus rewiring the brain. Due to its ability to “rewire” the brain, wood betony can be used to minimize symptoms of depression such as brain fog and low moods.

Wood betony is also a sedative, fending off insomnia and other sleep-related ailments.

Gotu Kola for overall brain health, depression, anxiety, and brain fog

Gotu kola increases the circulation of nutrients to heal and activate nerve endings. It also decreases neuro-inflammation, which contributes to chronic mental health challenges.

Additionally, gotu kola helps to flush toxins such as metals, pesticides, herbicides, carbon monoxides, and harmful VOCs from the brain. It facilitates transport of those toxins to the organs that properly eliminate waste from the body.

Kotu cola users report enhanced mental clarity, fewer symptoms of depression, reduce anxiety levels, and improved cognitive function.

Lemon Balm for gut health, anxiety and sleep disorders

Lemon balm reduces symptoms of stress and boosts mental acuity through several chemical processes, including but not limited to GABA release and reception.

For those whose stress presents as stomach pain, bloating and gas, lemon balm reduces stomach and intestinal discomfort. By alleviating inflammation and restoring balance to gut flora, lemon balm may also decrease stress-related weight gain.

Lemon balm combines well with valerian to ease mental duress and promote and restful night’s sleep. During an insomnia study, respondents reported 70-80% improvement in symptoms.

Valerian Root for severe anxiety, panic attacks, and insomnia

Valerian root is widely praised throughout Europe for its impact on anxiety and sleep. Chemicals within the plant encourage the release of GABA, slowing down hyperactive nerve cells. It is believed that valerian also blocks an enzyme that destroys GABA, helping the body naturally maintain healthy GABA levels.

Valerian plants contain calcium, magnesium, and iron which effectively promote restful sleep without reports of drowsiness, impairment, or foul moods the next morning.

The root reduces anxiety symptoms and decreases the frequency of panic attacks with fewer reported side effects.

Tulsi / Holy Basil for managing the body’s general stress response

Holy basil is a master adaptogen herb. It moderates multiple stress responses in the body. Constituents such as ocimarin and ocimumosides A and B reduce stress responses, normalize blood sugar, and lower cortisol. As a result, holy basil supports immune function, regulates glucose metabolism, increases energy and promotes better moods.

Extracts of holy basil have been used in clinical trails to treat depression and anxiety. Studies revealed that concentrated holy basil has antidepressant and anti-anxiety properties comparable to Valium and antidepressant drugs.

The herb also soothes inflammation throughout the body while mitigating stress-related pathologies in the stomach and intestines. It addresses stress-related weight gain and lowers “bad” cholesterol (LDL-cholesterol) while raising “good” cholesterol (HDL-cholesterol).

Though researchers don’t understand how, holy basil helps to build resiliency to stress when tested in mice. With prolonged use, mice demonstrated better stress tolerance and motivation to complete difficult tasks.

Nettle for insomnia, emotional stability, and improved energy

Nettle is high in B vitamins which support emotional stability and stress relief. When combined with vitamin C (also found in the plant), B6 creates serotonin which promotes stable moods and restful sleep.

Nettle also contains calcium, magnesium, and iron which work together to decrease symptoms of hyperactivity while stabilizing energy levels throughout the day.

Wild Oats for depression, fatigue, and pain

Wild oats help to regulate several hormones but especially oestrogen which stabilizes moods. It also inhibits the release of the enzyme phosphodiesterase type 4 (PDE4), which is linked to reduced stress, anxiety, and depression.

Wild oats lower cholesterol, stabilize blood sugar, reduce inflammation and address many stress-related gut issues. This is due in part to the presence of the antioxidant group avenanthramides, which moderate cytokines production. Cytokines are responsible for the inflammation behind many conditions.

For those battling long-term stress and an exhausted nervous system, wild oats are high in iron, manganese, and zinc. Together, they restore the myelin sheath around nerves. This repairs “frayed” nerves and reduces stress and irritability.

Soothe the symptoms of stress with our Stress + Anxiety Relief Combo with Organic Herbal Tea + Essential Oil. Receive the benefits of the Restorative Blend herbal tea containing passionflower, wild oats and chamomile.

Supplement those powerful herbs with our stress-relief essential oil blend containing cedarwood, frankincense, lavender, peppermint and vetiver.

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All herbal teas and essential oils are crafted by a Master Herbalist. Products are made on premises in small batches at our shop in Cumming, GA north of Atlanta. We are a small, woman-owned business that appreciates your support!

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