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Are adaptogens safe?

Ms. Ashley Koff, RD
Nutrition & Dietetics
Adaptogens -- plants that grow, and have grown for numerous years, in some of the most challenging environments of the world -- act as agents that allow the body to overcome and come out stronger (i.e. adapt to) stressors (including physical, mental, and chemical).

What's unique about adaptogens is their ability to enable the body "to adapt" as opposed to intervening to do something for the body that it is not doing itself, to replace something the body does not have, or to place excessive influence on one variable in an equation thereby weakening the influence of another. Adaptogens, by definition, should not contribute to the creation or degree of imbalance in a human body.

So is there "no risk"? My belief is that the healthy individual can comfortably use adaptogen (if the quality of the product is confirmed). The individual under the care of a or several healthcare practitioner(s) should consult them as one should with any medications, supplements, or specific dietary changes they wish to make to properly assess the benefits/risks for them as an individual. For example see licorice root. Today, adaptogens can be found in edible form, tablet, capsule, liquid and spray forms.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.