As effective as it is, we all know that aromatherapy isn’t the only way to look after our wellbeing, that’s why we have asked our friends over at Innermost to explain the science behind their products and why they should be added to your wellbeing shopping list.
Over the last few years, the importance of mental wellbeing and performance has become ever more prominent, with mindfulness exercises and “brain training” soaring in popularity as a result. But did you know that your nutrition can have just as impactful an effect on your mind? Enter nootropics and adaptogens. Are they worth their current hype? Short answer: absolutely. Nutrition brand Innermost explains why.
What are nootropics?
Nootropics are substances that improve cognitive function, in particular relating to focus, creativity, memory, and information recall. Some nootropics will already feature regularly in your diet (for example L-theanine, the stress-reducing amino acid found in tea), whilst others you’ll probably need to search a little further afield to get hold of (you mean pine bark isn’t already part of your diet…?).
Nootropics exist in both synthetic (manmade, e.g. adderall) and natural (i.e. found in nature) forms, and both can have positive effects on your mental functioning. However, wholly speaking, natural nootropics are more widely researched in terms of long-term effects and safety.
What are adaptogens?
Adaptogens are herbs and roots that support your body in handling mental and physical stress. Many substances, such as Siberian ginseng, can be considered nootropic as well as adaptogenic, and the terms are often used interchangeably.
What are some examples?
Natural nootropics and adaptogens are typically derived from plants or fungi. To give you a flavour, here’s a small selection of our favourites:
- L-theanine. A naturally-occurring amino acid found in tea leaves. Studies have shown it to effectively induce feelings of calm, without causing drowsiness. Found in Innermost’s Relax Capsules and Tone Capsules.
- Rhodiola rosea. An adaptogenic flowering plant that helps your body handle stress more easily. Also proven to boost mental processing and improve attention span. Found in Innermost’s Focus Capsules and Fit Protein.
- Lion’s mane mushroom. An edible and medicinal mushroom known for its ability to boost mood and reduce anxiety. Found in Innermost’s Relax Capsules.
- Siberian ginseng. A small shrub that has been used in traditional Chinese medicine for thousands of years. Helps to improve mood, reduce adrenal fatigue and improve memory and learning capacity. Found in Innermost’s Focus Capsules.
- Maca. A root vegetable, related to the radish. Boosts mood and regulates stress hormones. Found in Innermost’s Detox Booster, Recover Capsules, Fit Protein and Energy Booster.
- Creatine. Whilst usually consumed for its physical benefits, this organic compound also supports mental function, by ensuring your brain cells have a steady supply of energy. Found in Innermost’s Power Booster and Strong Protein.
How do they work?
Different nootropics affect the brain in different ways, from enhancing neurogenesis to improving cerebral circulation and neuron activity. Generally speaking, nootropics can provide the brain with the conditions required to work at its maximum potential, meaning neural responses are accelerated and neurotransmitters are optimally balanced.
Adaptogens respond to your body’s mental and physical reactions to stress (particularly your hormone levels) and work to balance these out to a neutral state of “calm” again.
Typically, the more you get of these natural ingredients in your diet, the more you’ll experience their positive effects, as they often have a compounding effect that means the changes they encourage, become more noticeable over time.
How do I take them?
Leave it to Innermost. All of our products contain nootropics and adaptogens to specifically enhance physical and mental function in different ways.
Check out our full range of products here, each developed to optimise your body and sharpen your mind in different ways.