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Run Forest, Run! And take some ginseng!

10/10/2008 3:08:30 PM

Tags: Exercise, Ginseng, Licorice, Schisandra, Running, Lifestyle, Tips, Advice, Health

Ever since I graduated college I’ve noticed that an extra few pounds have found their way onto my scale. I no longer walk up hills to make it on time for classes. Instead, I spend day after day sitting at my desk in front of a computer reading about herbs. To prevent this weight I went running for the first time yesterday and it paid off. My legs are killing me! (I probably shouldn’t have worn heels the following day.)

However, I fear I’ll stray from this healthy path and take a detour towards the couch with a fresh supply of DVDs. Using herbs can prevent this by giving me that extra strength I will need to stay focused and energized.

According to the July 1997 Herb Companion article Herbs for Energy, herbs fall into two categories: stimulants and adaptogens. Stimulants increase your heart rate, respiration and blood pressure whereas adaptogens increase your body’s resistance to physical stress.

The article recommends using these herbs for long-term energy:

1.1  1.2 

Licorice (Glycyrrhiza glabra).
This herbal stimulant can regulate your metabolism.

Siberian ginseng (Eleutherococcus senticosus)
This adaptogen decreases fatigue and increases the body’s ability to adapt to stress.

1.7  1.4 

Indian ginseng (Withania somnifera)
This herbal adaptogen facilitates learning and memory and fights stress and insomnia. 

Schisandra (Schizandra chinesis)
This herbal adaptogen improves endurance and increases work capacity.

How do you use herbs in your life to stay energized? If it’s not herbs that keep you energized, what does? And how do you stay in shape?

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