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Building Natural Stamina with Herbs

Feeling energetic and alive is fundamental to lead life to its fullest. Money comes and goes, circumstances change, but the potential of our body and creative mind is the only thing you can rely on. But building and maintaining solid physical and mental stamina is a delicate balance, and if you feel tired or exhausted, have trouble getting up, or stay awake, there‘s a lot you can do. Before shedding out big money on supplements and a new coffee machine, a few simple steps can make a big change.

Step 1: Sleep more

InsomniaSimply sleeping more is such an obvious thing to do, yet it‘s also one of the harder things to actually put into practice. If you‘re used to stay up late and can‘t sleep out, there‘s naturally a sleep deficiency going to develop.

You sure know how sleep deprivation makes you feel messed up, but there‘s actually a number of studies that show exactly how bad it is. One study shows that under six hours of sleep you become more depressed and anxious. Also, it makes you sad and less attractive to the other sex - and it makes you chose an unhealthy diet.

So, try this: In the next 2 weeks, get at least 6-8 hours of rest each night.

There‘s a good chance it won‘t be easy to fall asleep earlier than you‘re used to. Specially, if there‘s anxiety-issues, or other stresses going on, falling asleep and maintaing rest can be tricky. In such cases, sleep-promoting herbs can do wonders:

Valerian (Valeriana officinalis)
Hops (Humulus lupulus)
California Poppy (Eschscholzia californica)
Passion Flower (Passiflora incarnata)
Skullcap (Scutellaria lateriflora)

Both tinctures or teas work fine, you can find all these herbs in most local herbal pharmacies in bulk.

Step 2: Break the cycle of Stimulants

Coffee AddictionThe temptation is big to just go on another coffee binge. We‘ve gotten very used to short bursts of energy, delivered by sugar, caffeine, tobacco and synthetic uppers. But quick stimulants will leave you feeling depleted over time, as the energy is not replenished. Caffeine is the world‘s most popular psychoactive drug, but over time leads to adrenal exhaustion, as it overtaxes the system. This is quite a challenge, but to restore a natural energy balance, you have to cut out the caffeine - or at least reduce to a minimum.

Step 3: Re-vitalise with Herbs

Here‘s where herbal tonics really shine, along with the adaptogenic herbs. As the name implies, adaptogenic herbs adapt to the needs of the body, but more precisely they restore normal function of a system. There are many herbs in this category, and some naturally fit one person better than another. Prominent herbs in this class are:

HerbsGinseng (Panax Ginseng)
Ashwagandha (Withania somnifera)
Eleuthero (Siberian Ginseng)
Maca (Lepidium meyenii)
Gotu Kola (Centella asiatica)
Suma (Pfaffia paniculata)
Catuaba (Erythroxylum catuaba)

Medicinal mushrooms are also very valuable for this process; Reishi, Chaga, Cordyceps, Lions Mane and more. Since there‘s such a wide range of tonic herbs, it‘s best to try out a few different ones and stick with what feel best for you.

A herb that deserves special mentioning is Rhodiola Rosea, this herb is often used in fatigue conditions and has strongly stimulating properties. It has been touted as a remedy for the stresses of the 21st century; fatigue, mental fog, and mild depression. Rhodiola is a strong acting herb that has been used traditionally for centuries in nordic countries.

It is important to take herbs over a period of time, as their effect gradually builds up.

Step 4: Nourish the Nervous System

There is indeed a connection between the saying „to have nerves of steel“ and the actual nervous system, which is the great connector of our body. The Central Nervous System (CNS) is a delicate system that not only links every organ, but also connects the physiological and psychological aspects. Overstimulation and stress take a toll on the CNS and literally makes us feel thin nerved, worn out and depleted.

In western herbalism, nervine herbs are used to attune the nervous system. Of these, nervine tonics in particular tend to strengthen and rebuild the CNS. Herbs in this category:

Oat (Avena Sativa)
St. Johns Wort (Hypericum perforatum)
Blue skullcap (Scutellaria lateriflora)
Chamomille (Matricaria chamomilla)
Valerian (Valeriana officinalis)
Hops (Humulus lupulus)
Catuaba (Erythroxylum catuaba)
Lemon balm (Melissa officinalis)
Betony (Stachys officinalis)
Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia)

Over time, the regular use of a selection of these herbs can contribute to a healthy nervous system. But restoring lost balance encompasses more than just herbs, namely changes in lifestyle, bodywork, spiritual practices and most importantly - determination.

Caution: This information is not intended to replace medical advice and all material is for informational purposes only. No warranty whatsoever is made that any information is accurate. Review any information with your health care provider.