Adaptogens: Reconsider Your Relationship With Coffee Feat. Lopa van der MerschJun 18, 2019
There’s a buzz word going around that I’m excited to share more about with you in this episode! And that word is ADAPTOGENS. Lopa van der Mersch found a passion for adaptogens when she kept reaching for coffee after her first was born. She knew that coffee wasn’t the right thing for her body as it wasn’t going to solve the underlying issue of her tiredness + stress. When she realized that there was no coffee alternative to meet her needs, she decided to create her own with adaptogens in it to help boost energy, decrease stress on the body and other awesome health benefits. I can’t wait for you to tune in to learn about upgrading your morning cup of joe for your adaptogens sake.
Lopa is a lifelong health seeker and founder + CEO of Rasa Coffee, the first coffee alternative to offer functional health benefits through adaptogenic herbs. Rasa is founded on the belief that by bringing life-giving adaptogenic herbs into your morning beverage ritual, you can actually transform your days.
Lopa’s son was four-months-old and the sleepless nights were wearing her thin. She kept reaching for coffee to keep her awake knowing that coffee wasn’t the right solution for her body and it wasn’t going to solve the underlying issue. It masked her tiredness rather than giving her energy to be a mom. She then found herself researching for a coffee alternative with all the right herbs that would give her energy and decrease stress. Little did she know that it didn’t exist... so she ended up creating her own. The inspiration behind her energy-boosting brew was to add adaptogens + herbs to help with the body’s stress response that coffee normally amplifies.
Simply put, adaptogens are a class of herbs that help your body adapt to stress. They are herbs that have been used for hundreds even thousands of years in Chinese medicine, but the term was coined in the 1960s by a Russian pharmacologist named Israel Brekhman who was studying these herbs with Russian soldiers + athletes. He developed a few criteria in order for it to be an adaptogen:
1. NON-TOXIC IN NORMAL THERAPEUTIC DOSES
2. CAUSE A NON-SPECIFIC STATE OF RESISTANCE IN THE BODY
3. NORMALIZING EFFECT ON YOUR OVERALL BODY FUNCTION
ADAPTOGENS HELPING WITH STRESS RESPONSE
Your body has two main pathways to communicate to your adrenals when it's under stress. There is the endocrine pathway which is the hypothalamic pituitary adrenal access (HPA) and the nervous system pathway which is the sympathoadrenal system (SAS). One way that you can look at adaptogens is that they can actually mimic stress in the body, so it exercises your HPA and your SAS.
If you look at the body’s stress response when it's experiencing the benefits of adaptogens, you will see that the body doesn’t get stressed as easy, triggered as easy and you are going to come back down to normal more quickly after a lower peak of stress. In other words, it helps to bring the stress response down to something a little bit more manageable for the body.
AVERAGE CUP OF JOE VS. HERB BASED COFFEE
Here’s why Lopa believes that you should start reconsidering your relationship with coffee ☕️
WHAT CAFFEINE DOES TO YOUR BRAIN
Caffeine molecules are structurally similar to adenosine which is the chemical that signals us to get sleepy. When you drink coffee, caffeine binds to your adenosine receptors and stops you from getting sleepy. BUT because your brain is smart, it can’t be fooled by caffeine altogether and now that the adenosine doesn’t have a home, your brain creates new adenosine receptors which explains why you need more and more coffee over time to have the same effect.
Caffeine also stimulates the adrenals to release adrenalin putting your body in an alert state instead of this being triggered by a genuine stress stimulus in your life. In a sense, you are using up some of your stress response and putting your body in a stressed state.
Coffee also has an effect on the neurotransmitters dopamine by preventing it to get reabsorbed into your system. This results in it hanging out in your brain a little longer and feeling that hangover effect. This effect on the body is a part of what makes you addicted to caffeine, wanting more of it and give you symptoms if you don’t have it.
RASA 12 HERB BLEND
Lopa said that when they started creating their 12 herb blend, they didn’t realize how well it would balance out the effects of coffee. So, what is this Rasa original made of and what is it designed to do?
- Balance out your pH levels.
- Stable your energy.
- Lessen your jitters.
- Improve your mood.
- Better quality sleep.
- Decreased stress on your body.
- Added nervine tonics in the blend used to calm and sooth the nervous system.
- Chicory, dandelion and burdock used to make the base coffee flavor.
- Eleuthero, rhodiola, rhodiola, shatavari, reishi, codonopsis, he shou wu are the added adaptogens.
- Chaga mycelium is also included and is often labeled as an adaptogen, but it’s actually not; however, it is used to help boost immune function.
As you can see, this blend is packed full of adaptogens! Lopa points out that it’s really easy for people to space out different adaptogens for different days. But she believes that that is not actually going to give you the full benefit of adaptogens and that adaptogens should be taken consistently over a long period of time.
This is where having a comprehensive formula, such as Original Rasa, is a great way to start getting adaptogens on a consistent basis to help strengthen that stress support system in your body. You are also not getting too much on any herb at once as all of the herbs are balanced against each other.
MENTIONED IN EPISODE
The material contained within is provided for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as medical advice. You should seek prompt medical care for any specific health issues and consult your physician before beginning a new regiment or purchasing any product(s).