Ashwagandha, one of the most powerful herbs in Ayurvedic healing, has been used since ancient times for a wide variety of conditions, and is most well-known for its restorative benefits. In Sanskrit Ashwagandha means “the smell of a horse,” indicating that the herb imparts the vigor and strength of a stallion, and has traditionally been prescribed to help people strengthen their immune system after an illness.
D-ribose is a simple sugar molecule with a wealth of functions in human and animal biology. Perhaps its most fundamental role is as a component of ATP, the universal energy carrier in the body’s cells. ATP molecules store energy as they are built up and release it as they are broken down—the more energy a cell requires, the more ATP it consumes. In fact, humans “burn” an amount of ATP equivalent to their own body weight every day!
Every single process undergone by living cells requires energy—even at rest, we are continually breaking down ATP molecules. And that means that we have a constant need for the components of ATP molecules, including D-ribose.
EGCG (epigallocatechin-3-gallate ), is a polyphenol in tea responsible for a number of health benefits. Scientific studies have focused on the anti-cancer, anti-viral, and anti-inflammatory properties, in addition to its potential effects on Alzheimer’s and cardiovascular conditions. The majority of health benefits in green tea can be attributed to EGCG.
EGCG directly interacts with proteins and phospholipids in the plasma membrane and regulates signal transduction pathways, transcription factors, DNA methylation, mitochondrial function, and autophagy to exert many of its beneficial biological actions.
An Adaptogen is a substance that helps the body adapt to various types of stress. In order to achieve this status a plant must be harmless to the body. It must also have a broad-spectrum, normalizing action that brings an organism back to homeostasis. Through Russian Research, Eleuthero became the model for all other adaptogens. In the late ‘60’s and ‘70’s, studies were conducted in over 2,100 healthy people. These studies showed that Eleuthero increased the ability of subjects to withstand stress such as heat, noise, motion, exercise, and increase in workload. Subjects also experienced a normalization in mental alertness and work output.
Typically known for their use in beer, hops are also used in herbal teas and other beverages. Hops have been used to support deep and restful sleep, support a healthy response to stress, and help promote relaxation.
L-theanine is an amino acid analogue of the proteinogenic amino acids L-glutamate and L-glutamine, and is an important constituent of a green tea. L-theanine increases the activity of the inhibitory neurotransmitter GABA, which has anti-anxiety effects. It also increases dopamine and the production of alpha waves in the brain.
The botanical name refers to a hallmark property of this plant; glukos (sweet in greek) and riza (root). Glycyrrhizin, a cortisone like chemical found in high proportions in the root, is said to be 50 times sweeter than sucrose (table sugar). Licorice has many uses and is considered a tonic plant in many traditional medicinal systems. It has been used to support a healthy digestion, lung and respiratory function and promote a healthy adrenal response to stress.
Magnolia bark and it’s various constituents have been shown to modulate cortisol production. The bark is commonly used in formulas to support healthy response to stress and calm occasional nervousness as well as to support sleep.
Melatonin is involved in the entrainment (synchronization) of the circadian rhythms of physiological functions including sleep timing, blood pressure regulation, seasonal reproduction and many others. Melatonin is often recommended for sleep problems involving sleep cycles, such as jet lag or irregular night shift work and occasional insomnia. It is also know for being a powerful antioxidant.
The vine and leaves contain many alkaloids such as harmaline, harmine, harman, and harmalol. The plant also contains many bioflavonoids including quercetin, rutin, apigenin, kaempferol, vitexin, and orientin. There have been scarce human clinical trials on this plant, yet it remains a steadfast choice of traditional herbalists for its ability to gently restore debilitated nerve centers by promoting nutrition uptake at the cellular level. It supports a calming and relaxing effect on the body during times of occasional stress.
The term polyphenol denotes the presence of multiple phenolic rings. (A phenolic ring is a 6-carbon benzene ring with an attached hydroxyl (OH) group—also referred to as the hydroxyl functional group.) The major polyphenols in green tea are flavonoids (e.g., catechin, epicatechin, epicatechin gallate, epigallocatechin gallate (EGCG) and proanthocyanidins). Epigallocatechin gallate is viewed as the most significant active component. The leaf bud and first leaves are richest in epigallocatechin gallate.
Red Clover Tops
Red Clover is primarily nutritive, but also used to support proper lymphatic function (alterative), immune support, healthy skin, and proper endocrine function. In Russian and Chinese folk medicine the floral tea is used to support bronchial-respiratory health. It has also been used for various skin conditions as a wash, and internally both as a tea and an extract. Because of it’s nutritional complexity it has been recommended for convalescence, brewed as a tea from the freshly dried flowers.
Rhodiola rosea is a remarkable herb that has a wide and varied history of uses. It is thought to strengthen the nervous system, fight depression, enhance immunity, elevate the capacity for exercise, enhance memory, aid weight reduction, increase sexual function and improve energy levels. It has long been known as a potent adaptogen. Adaptogens are substances that increase the body’s overall resistance and help to normalise bodily functions.
Schisandra berries provide powerful antioxidant protection, particularly from free radicals and other toxins in the environment that may cause cellular damage. Regarded as a popular adaptogenic agent, schisandra berries are unique in that they hold a remarkable blend of five distinct flavor properties collectively serving to promote overall health and vitality. Namely, bitter, sweet, sour, salty and hot. Schisandra berries function to enhance the body’s natural resistance and adaptation to stressful influences, support mental endurance and promote overall metabolic efficiency. Much of the clinical research has focused on the effects of Schisandra on liver function, especially its effect on the production of various liver detoxifying enzymes as well as the antioxidant activity of the extract.
St John’s Wort
There have been hundreds of randomized controlled studies on St. Johns Wort Extract, many using the total Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HAMD) and the Zerssen Depression scale (DS) while comparing the herbal extract to anti-depressant drugs. While not all studies have shown a positive clinical effect, the majority do favor a positive effect on mood, particularly when whole plant extracts are used. The flavonoids hypericin and hyperforin have been the most lauded chemicals contained in St. Johns Wort that may be responsible for its pharmacological activity; the flowers contain many antioxidants such as Rutin, Quercetin, and Lutein.
Tart cherry juice
Tart cherry juice concentrate offers a variety of potential health and medicinal benefits. It is a nutritional goldmine of phenolics, which are naturally occurring plant compounds that have anti-inflammatory and antioxidative properties. The main type of phenolics in cherries are also a rich source of melatonin. This naturally occurring blend of phytonutrients and antioxidant compounds work synergistically to fight free radicals.
There have been numerous human clinical trials conducted on Valerian and many have shown positive results to support a normal restful nights sleep. Other uses not proven with research have included treating anxiety, stress, depression, attention deficit disorder, chronic fatigue syndrome, tremors, epilepsy, menopause symptoms, and other conditions.