When you’re trying to achieve optimal health, you must eat nutritious foods to keep your fitness, strength, and endurance up. It’s equally essential to take herbs that are good for your physical and mental well-being. Eating nutritious foods and working out isn’t enough for those who take fitness seriously.
If you notice the recovery time after your workouts is longer than it used to be or should be, you may need a little boost to increase your energy and stamina. Herbs are an excellent way to energize your body naturally. Every herb has a different function, and even some need to be taken at certain times to enhance your workout results.
Where to Buy Herbs
You can buy your herbs at your local shop, holistic center, and even grocery store. You can also buy edibles online which, again, have a very calming effect on the mind. Before you run out to buy them, it’s essential to consult with your doctor before taking any natural supplements. Your doctor will know your medical history and medications and determine if there is anything that would prevent you from taking herbs.
If your doctor does recommend herbal supplementation, there are many different types of herbs to improve your workout results by boosting energy, stamina, fitness, strength, and endurance. However, there are seven, in particular, that can have positive effects when consumed individually or combined.
Turmeric is a plant whose active ingredient is curcumin, a powerful anti-inflammatory herb with antioxidant properties. Most athletes take turmeric for muscle recovery since it can reduce inflammation. Muscle soreness and pain is a thing of the past when you take turmeric after your workouts.
Turmeric is so powerful that it’s known to have more anti-inflammatory benefits than prescription drugs, and there are no side effects.
If you’re looking for a pre-workout boost, red ginseng provides the energy you want. By increasing adrenal strength, red ginseng builds core energy levels. It also increases the availability of oxygen to the muscles, supporting recovery and repair. It can even improve endurance with its mild stimulant effect.
Since there is a growing interest in the use of Red ginseng, also known as Panax ginseng, Asian ginseng, and Korean ginseng, researchers studied its effects on fatigue and post-workout recovery. According to results, Red ginseng, the best selling product of South Korea, accounts for about 59 percent of sales on the market.
Many Asian countries also use the extracts of Red ginseng as a form of traditional medicine. Western countries have also adopted it as a means for relief and resistance against stress, disease, and fatigue.
During research with 659 participants to determine the efficacy of Panax ginseng on fatigue and physical performance, researchers found that the herb reduces fatigue and increases energy. Several athletes in both the Eastern and Western countries use Red ginseng as part of their diet.
Matcha and Green Tea
For an increased metabolic rate, Matcha and green tea have proved to be effective before, during, and after workouts. These two powerhouse herbs are also known to improve cognitive functioning, providing the ability to stay motivated. Athletes who partake in endurance sports can especially benefit from using Matcha and green tea.
Further research has measured the efficacy and mechanisms of green tea catechins on body weight, fat metabolism, and oxidative stress parameters, specifically in healthy, physically active, and trained participants. In 2006, researchers conducted a 10-week study of catechin-rich green tea in mice that performed running exercises. It indicated that there was improved running endurance. Running time to exhaustion increased by 30 percent.
In a 2015 study, researchers determined that Matcha green tea drinks enhance fat oxidation in brisk walking females. There were 13 women in the study. The women were given three drinks (each drink made with 1 gram of Matcha) with responses measured at 8–10, 18–20, and 28–30 minutes. The results were a lower respiratory exchange ratio and increased fat oxidation during a 30-minute brisk walk.
Ashwagandha, also known as Indian Ginseng, Winter Cherry, or Withania Somnifera (Latin name), is believed to provide strength. Consumed in powder or tablet form, Ashwagandha can increase stamina and boost energy.
In a 2012 eight-week trial on the effects of supplementing Ashwagandha on cardiorespiratory endurance in elite Indian cyclists, a baseline treadmill test was performed before the athletes were given the herb. After eight weeks of consuming Ashwagandha, they repeated the process. The results indicated a 13 percent increase in stamina and energy in the control group, while the placebo group showed no change.
Shatavari, also called Asparagus racemosus, is an ancient herb used to improve stamina and energy and increase endurance. The herb is rich in antioxidants, which help boost immunity and reduce fatigue. It’s also great for improving strength.
Rich in antioxidants, Brahmi, or Bacopa monnieri, is an herb that reduces fatigue and lethargy by flushing out damaging toxins from the body and promoting cell nourishment. It also affects stress hormone levels, or cortisol, thus reducing fatigue. Finally, Brahmi helps improve cognitive function, giving athletes the mental stamina to complete vigorous workouts.
Safed Musli, or Chlorophytum borivilianum, is a herb with strong aphrodisiac properties, which helps relieve stress. It’s known to produce virility and stamina in men. In a 2011 trial, researchers determined that Safed Musli combined with Velvet beans increases serum growth hormone in athletic men. Men took the herb on two different days, separated by one week. Blood was collected from the participants before taking the Safed Musli and Velvet Bean, and at 20, 40, 60, 80, 100, and 120 minutes post-ingestion. The growth hormone was analyzed at each time interval. The results indicated that the serum growth hormone increased over time, with higher values at 60 minutes, 80 minutes, and 100 minutes.
People have used herbal supplementation for health benefits since the beginning of time. Until recently, the Western world used herbs for increased stamina, endurance, fitness, and strength. Countless studies and research were conducted, proving herbs’ ability to improve athletic performance. By knowing this, you can increase your workout results and decrease your recovery time.