Despite its’ exotic-sounding name that could come right out of a classical Middle Eastern poem, you may have heard of Rhodiola Rosea without even realizing it! It goes by many different names, such as Arctic Root, Golden Root, Orpin Rose, and perhaps most commonly, Rose Root or Rose Root Extract.
If you haven’t guessed, the Rhodiola Rosea is a type of plant, one that’s often cultivated to be consumed for its exceptional benefits. Known for its ability to combat both physical and mental fatigue, Rhodiola Rosea extracts, for instance, have been prescribed as a dietary supplement for athletes, healthy populations, and even clinical populations.
The herb is also well-known for its adaptogenic properties, meaning that it helps the body to resist physical, biological or chemical stressors. This comes as no surprise, especially since it has been confirmed that there are more than 140 active ingredients in the root of the Rhodiola Rosea. Two of the strongest ingredients are rosavin and salidroside — uncommonly heard of, but incredibly potent as chemical compounds.
As a herb and a flower, Rhodiola Rosea also enjoys popularity for its fragrance and taste. It’s often described as having a delicate rose flavor with a sweet and slightly bitter taste, but overall, it’s very much enjoyed even if eaten raw. In fact, it is not only found in health supplements but also found in consumer products like coffee, tea sachets, energy drinks, essential oils, and of course now super greens powders.
What is Rhodiola Rosea?
A herb native to the arctic areas of Europe, Alaska, and Asia, the Rhodiola Rosea grows in cold regions at high altitude. It was first used in traditional medicine, particularly in the northern latitudes in the countries of Russia and Scandinavia to help dwellers cope with the cold Siberian climate. As a flowering plant, it boasts beautiful yellow to greenish-yellow flowers, sometimes tipped with red.
Research has shown that adaptogens like Rhodiola Rosea can reduce lethargy levels, ease depression and anxiety, and even enhance cognitive abilities. This makes it particularly attractive to us, especially with the intense hustle and bustle of everyday life that we all know too well.
For us in today’s modern world, a biological boost is always welcome, and especially one that is known for having little side effects. Compared to many of the natural supplements in the market, Rhodiola Rosea is a unique adaptogen, in that it poses a very low risk of side effects that can range from headaches to seizures. This earns the herb many points with users as a natural option worth trying.
Moreover, there has been increasing speculation that Rhodiola Rosea has many other benefits to the human body, such as improving brain function, lowering blood sugar, and even preventing cancer. Sounds too good to be true? Let’s take a look at what the research tells us about this versatile and useful natural supplement.
What are the Benefits of Rhodiola Rosea?
The research community continues to be amazed by the confirmation of the many benefits there are to the consumption of Rhodiola Rosea.
While we still don’t have a full picture of all of its supposed benefits, the pieces are beginning to fit together as more and more studies are completed — already painting for us an impressive picture of this amazing herb that’s our helper and friend.
Rhodiola Rosea improves Your Exercise Performance
As with most other herbs and natural supplements, people always wonder about its effects on physical capabilities and whether they can produce real results in performance. Well, the same goes for the Rhodiola Rosea — and so far, reseach has been very promising.
For instance, a Belgian study was set up to “investigate the effect of acute and 4-week Rhodiola rosea intake on physical capacity, muscle strength, speed of limb movement, reaction time, and attention” (1). What it found was that participants were given 200 mg of Rhodiola Rosea two hours before a cycling test were able to exercise longer than those given a placebo.
Similarly, another study set up in the United States looked at the effect of Rhodiola Rosea on endurance in exercise. An hour before the six-mile time-trial race, some participants were given a dosage of 1.4 mg per pound of Rhodiola Rosea. These participants finished the race significantly faster than those who were given placebos (2).
In the scientific community, there’s no doubt of the profound effect of Rhodiola Rosea on exercise performance whatsoever, but so far it has been attributed more to decreasing perceived exhaustion over the actual strengthening of muscles.
This means that the Rhodiola Rosea is no magic herb that will boost your muscle power instantaneously like in cartoons or movies — but it definitely will help you exercise longer and better for a fitter, stronger, and more enduring version of you.
Rhodiola Rosea can Fight Stress and Fatigue
In a 2018 nationwide study in the UK about mental health, a startling 74% of people responded saying that they have “felt so stressed that they have been overwhelmed or unable to cope” (3). And it has its effects on the way we behave — 46% reported that they started to develop unhealthy eating habits due to stress, while 29% said they increased their drinking and 16% said they increased their smoking.
This is a global trend and rings true all around the world, with increased stressors that come as part and parcel of our lifestyles. From things like health conditions to housing worries to the pressure to succeed, there’s a good reason why we’re often stressed and tired.
Rhodiola Rosea, a natural adaptogen, is here to help you better handle and manage your stress levels, and it has the science to back it up. According to a trial conducted to investigate its effects on people with stress symptoms, participants who were given 400 mg of Rhodiola Rosea a day for four weeks showed significant improvement overall. In fact, they were less exhausted, anxious, or lethargic after just three days (4)!
A similar study conducted in Sweden to test the efficacy of Rhodiola Rosea extract also found that it had an impressively good effect on fatigue and attention levels, compared to the group that took a placebo (5).
With the proven anti-stress and anti-fatigue effects of the Rhodiola Rosea, it’s incredibly strange why there are so many more people who have not been exposed to it. The data points to it being a highly effective adaptogen, meaning that it is definitely a handy helper to us in our daily lives. It keeps us both energized and relaxed enough to face the challenges of every day.
Rhodiola Rosea may enhance Brain Function
No doubt many of the challenges we face daily have some sort of mental dimension to it, be it at work, at social events, or even at home. We all need strong mental capabilities and stamina.
While exercise, good sleeping habits, and a healthy diet are all essential to keep our minds active and strong (6), the truth is that realistically in our world today, not many of us will be able to have all three. As a result, it might seem difficult to maintain, let alone improve, our ability to perform cognitively — but Rhodiola Rosea might be able to help us with that.
Research has shown that it can increase mental performance remarkably, producing tangible results in the ability to compete and excel in various tasks. For example, in a study with students in Russia, those who took Rhodiola Rosea supplements saw 8% higher exam scores than those who had taken placebos (7).
Another study showed that Rhodiola Rosea improved military cadets’ capacity for mental work on night duties. The results from both psychometric and physiological testing in this study prove that Rhodiola Rosea does have the ability to boost brain function even when we are tired out (8).
Of course, more research still has to be done to determine the best amount, dosage and frequency of the herb to be consumed for the optimal results. However, there is certainly enough scientific inquiry into this to be safely confident of Rhodiola Rosea’s positive impact on mental strength and capacity.
Rhodiola Rosea helps to prevent Illnesses
One of the main reasons why people purchase and take health supplements is for, well, better health. After all, it’s often said that happiness and health come hand in hand. Unfortunately, it seems more and more difficult to maintain a healthy lifestyle today. In fact, studies show that less than 3% of Americans lead a ‘healthy lifestyle’ (9).
This is a problem because it leaves most of us open to illnesses, such as heart disease, diabetes, and even cancer. Well, the good news is that Rhodiola Rosea may be of help. Research has shown that there’s strong potential for this herb to help us guard against some of these illnesses.
The reason for this? The potency of a component in Rhodiola Rosea known as salidroside. In a test-tube study, for instance, researchers have found that this chemical component useful for its potential anticancer properties. In the study, it successfully inhibited the growth of bladder, breast, colon and liver cancer cells (10).
It’s also encouraging to see the research done to explore the relationship between Rhodiola Rosea and diabetes. In an animal study done in 2014 (11), the extract was shown to lower blood sugar in animals by increasing the number of glucose transporters in the blood, meaning that more glucose is absorbed into the cells. Again, this can be attributed to the natural antioxidant salidroside.
While results have yet to be generalized to humans, the results so far are indeed very promising. More recent findings also “highlight the potential value of Rhodiola rosea as a dietary supplement for diabetes control” (12), so while you should still consult your doctor before taking any Rhodiola Rosea supplements for diabetes, it doesn’t hurt to give it a go.
As a whole, Rhodiola Rosea is unquestionably one of the most researched medicinal plants in the community today and has a very strong potential to help ward off diseases and improve the quality of life for us today.
What are the Side Effects of Rhodiola Rosea?
Rhodiola Rosea is one of the safest natural health supplements to consume today. There are almost no noticeable side effects, apart from mild allergy and in rare cases, insomnia. In fact, the margin of safety is so wide that a typical recommended dosage of it is less than 2% the amount that would be dangerous to animals (13).
However, there have been reports of Rhodiola Rosea supplements that have been adulterated with cheaper and much less effective ingredients, so it’s important to check for third-party certifications before purchasing any.
For example, SuperGreen Tonik premium greens are one of the more trusted green supplement products that have been certified third-party tested, so customers like you can be assured that you’re getting the full benefits.
Rhodiola Rosea Powder
For the powder and tablet forms of Rhodiola Rosea, a general does of 200 to 600 mg per day is considered to be safe and effective.
One way to ensure that you are getting the right dosage safely and conveniently is to consume it in a green powder blend. Mix one scoop with water every day, and you not only get to reap the benefit from Rhodiola Rosea, but also from many other superfoods.
There are many brands to choose from today, but as highlighted before, you should choose one that is the third party certified and is transparent with all the ingredients and the concentration of each for optimal results.
SuperGreen TONIK premium greens are certainly one of the most trustworthy ones in this area, revealing all of its ingredients and the amount of each, unlike many other brands out there that do not.
Summary of Rhodiola Rosea
This herb is almost a natural miracle, with all the benefits that it brings to the table. Specifically, research is very strong in proving it does help us to cope with stress and fatigue, empowering us to take on challenge after challenge every day.
Nutritionally, it is one of the safest supplements to take, if taken at the correct dosage of the right quality of unadulterated Rhodiola Rosea, which you can find very easily in SuperGreen Tonik premium greens along with other varieties of superfoods to optimize your health in today’s stressful world.