Best Adaptogens for Memory

Adaptogens are one of the best-kept wellness secrets in the world, period. If that sounds like a wild claim to you, wait till you hear the rest!

Adaptogenic foods help our bodies handle external and internal stressors. This can be the headache you get from a long day at work, but also things like gastrointestinal discomfort, spontaneous rashes, metabolic problems, low fertility, and the list goes on.

Many don’t realize just how far-reaching the consequences of stress are on every single system of our bodies. Likewise, the dramatic healing effects of adaptogens in this regard are seldom talked about, even within the fitness and wellness community.

To make our own small contribution towards changing that for the better, today we’re going to take a look at one particular area of interest where adaptogens have shown incredible promise: that of improving memory function.

What are the best adaptogens for memory, and how do they work? Read on to expand your knowledge.

How Adaptogens Work

As mentioned above, adaptogens alter our natural stress response. But how do they accomplish that?

In simple terms, when our bodies experience stress of any kind, we experience GAS.

GAS stands for General Adaptation Syndrome, and it describes the three steps of coping that our body uses in order to handle stressful stimuli. First, we go into alarm mode: this may include a fight-or-flight response and heightened levels of anxiety as we try to assess the cause of the stress we are facing.

Next comes resistance. This is where we build up an internal barrier of defense against the stress, detaching ourselves from it and working our way through it.

Finally, the third phase of GAS is exhaustion. While many accept exhaustion – and the negative self-thought that often accompanies it – as part and parcel of the natural de-stressing process, this is not strictly the case. GAS is just how most of us are used to coping with stress.

Adaptogens can change this by giving us the mental resources to bypass exhaustion by focusing more energy on the resistance stage. Ultimately, more energy during resistance means a higher likelihood of “surviving” the bout of stress without crashing afterward.

Over time, this helps us adapt to stress more organically and without displaying as many severe side effects. 

How Long do Adaptogens Take to Work?

Adaptogens are generally quite fast-acting, and most recommend planning ahead with regards to your dosage and the time of day that you take your choice of adaptogens, as it might impact your perception of the results.

Adaptogens work wonders when used in periods of intense, stressful emotions – and many of them can display significant results within hours.

Note that adaptogens don’t lead to any kind of physical dependency, and in most cases, their effects wear off as soon as they are metabolized and flushed out of your system. 

This makes it easy to experiment with different kinds of adaptogenic supplements and see what works best for you.

What is Adaptogen Used for?

Adaptogens can be incredibly useful for countless applications. Some simply take them to wind down after a hard day. Others use them to manage stress-related pains, aches, or imbalances.

Yet others see the adaptogenic qualities of these supplements as a nice bonus and mostly incorporate them into their diets for the sake of variety and nutrition. It’s all up to you and your particular health goals!

One area where adaptogens show exceptional promise – especially compared to traditional remedies and medicines – is in promoting neural health and memory function. 

Certain adaptogenic herbs and mushrooms contain unique ingredients that support the health of our nervous system and our cells in a very unique way. Existing research has already shown that these benefits might be long-lasting, potentially benefiting you for the rest of your life!

Adaptogens can raise your daily energy levels and your ability to cope with difficult time periods. Of course, they’re not some kind of panacea – but they do work exceedingly well when used to their strengths.

Which Adaptogen is Best for Me?

Ultimately, this is a highly personal question, and you shouldn’t expect anyone to be able to provide you with an objective answer. 

Adaptogens come in many forms, and each has its own particular strengths depending on your physical and lifestyle needs.

In this guide, we focus on the best adaptogens for memory, as we feel this is one of the most significant, yet underappreciated quality-of-life concerns that plenty of adaptogens can mitigate and improve. 

A healthier, more stable memory results in better mental focus and an ability to keep track of important daily tasks. With that extra awareness comes a sense of calm, control, and reduced stress.

To help you make an easier, more educated choice, we have assembled below an overview of the very best adaptogens for memory function.

Best Adaptogens for Memory

A whole host of adaptogens exist which have demonstrated abilities to improve our mental functioning and well-being in some way. This includes the following, all of which are shown to make serious, measurable contributions to neurological health and in particular improve memory.

Reishi

In ancient times, the reishi mushroom was often called “the Mushroom of Immortality” due to its supposed ability to improve your overall health in such a way as to ensure a long life. 

Today, thanks to our scientific understanding of reishi mushrooms and their effects, the nickname has stuck. Reishi can improve your well-being across the board, boosting your immune system, prevents infections and tumors, and can lift our moods preventing the onset of depression and anxiety!

With that in mind, it’s no big surprise that the reishi also has some proven adaptogenic effects in relation to memory function. Research has shown that reishi supplements can improve mental focus, clear the head, and make it easier to recall important pieces of information.

Cordyceps

The cordyceps may be a relatively rare parasitic fungus from the Himalayas, but it is also one of the most potent adaptogens in the world! Used since antiquity for its ability to increase energy levels, cordyceps is very popular as an athletic supplement.

But far beyond its main use, cordyceps can also promote strong, healthy growth of neurons in the brain. This can improve reflexes, body-mind coordination, and also help you stay on top during difficult, multi-tasking situations. 

Rhodiola Rosea

This pretty little flower is more than just nice to smell and look at – it’s also a great adaptogenic pick-me-up that can calm the nerves like little else!

By encouraging healthy blood flow, including within the brain, rhodiola rosea can prevent fatigue, making us feel more awake during the day. It can also make it easier for us to process new information and hold onto it when we need to.

Lion's Mane

The lion’s mane mushroom doesn’t just look unique with its white, fur-like teeth – it’s also incredibly powerful. Sometimes referred to as “The Mushroom of Wisdom” or “the Brain Mushroom”, very few adaptogens can match its strengths in promoting neural health.

Lion’s mane has been linked to a lower risk for degenerative disorders such as Alzheimer’s, while its cardiovascular and circulatory benefits mean that you will feel more refreshed, energized, and focused on your daily tasks.

Ashwagandha

Probably one of the most famous and well-studied adaptogens worldwide, Ashwagandha has been used for its medicinal properties for hundreds, if not thousands of years. 

Packed with antioxidant compounds, it is primarily known for its ability to mitigate stress and anxiety. Ashwagandha relaxes the body and mind, allowing you to concentrate and retain pieces of new information more easily.

It is also thought to encourage a healthy lifestyle in many other ways, such as by reducing oxidative stress across the body and lowering levels of cortisol and cholesterol in the blood.

Ginseng

Ginseng has been a popular dietary supplement choice for a long time, and for good reason: it can appreciably improve mental acuity and free up valuable headspace for where you need it.

Because it also interacts with the cardiovascular system and encourages healthy blood flow, ginseng can make you feel physically more energetic and active as well.

Turmeric

You might be familiar with turmeric thanks to its widespread use as a spice in the traditional cuisines of many nations, but did you know that this condiment is an excellent adaptogen as well?

Curcumin, one of the active ingredients unique to turmeric, has been shown to lower depression, decrease inflammation, detox the liver, and improve brain function in many ways at once.

This makes turmeric one of the most effective adaptogenic supplements of them all.

Best Supplements for Brain Function

If you’re looking for the best adaptogenic supplements to support your brain, starting off with those based on some of the ingredients we covered above would be a good idea.

These are some of the most potent, widely available, and reliable adaptogens currently on the market, and you really can’t go wrong with them. Particularly at moderate doses, they’re incredibly safe, too! 

You will note that many brain health supplements will often blend these adaptogens with a few additional ingredients, like B vitamins, L-theanine (an amino acid), healthy fats, or other vitamins. 


Of course, none of these can hurt, though unless you have a particular deficiency, they are unlikely to improve the quality of the adaptogen’s effectiveness and might not be worth the money.


We recommend going for brain function supplements that are mostly made from raw, organic adaptogenic herbs, with as few additives as possible!