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I am often asked what does rhodiola do...

LK3

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I get lots of questions about what some of the lesser know products I carry do, I am going to help answer that by providing some general information about some of my favorite products.

in reality you can get many of these supplements anywhere, and by all means feel free to explore that. I carry only products that I use, not whats cheapest and what I can make money on.

as most are starting to learn what we see on labels is not always what is in the pills and powders we buy on supplement store shelves. In many cases I have tried various brands or used products for long enough to have gone through several suppliers, what I offer is always the best of what I have found and what I personally use.

rhodiola is one of my favorite supplements and something I live on, for years i have.

all of the supplements I use work on similar things or with a similar idea behind them.

for my needs I have put together combinations that provide serious drug like effects, and when part of my program changes I see a major difference, not one questions weather or not something is "working".

you will see in most cases that the doses I use are substantially higher then what you see recommended, rho for example I often take more then 2000mg ed. I do not suggest anyone do what I do, I do it for my reasons, I will say what I do works.

enjoy!

Rhodiola

I am gona do a lot of copy and paste and make my own notes where appropriate, feel free to join in and share.

4 Ways Rhodiola Could Change Your Life

I was just popping my morning regimen of pre-breakfast vitamins and realized that although these herbs and nutrients are (and have been) such a big part of my healing process, I haven't made them a big enough part of my contributions here. Kinda skipped past the 'body' part of healing and went right into the mind and emotions, which just won't work.



So, without further delay, let's talk about my very most favorite plant of the moment, Rhodiola.



Rhodiola rosea, also called Arctic or Golden Root, is generally placed in a class of plants and fungi affectionately named 'adaptogens'. These are the great healers; the gifts to mankind that the plant community and earth have provided which are incredibly essential to surviving well during times of stress and pressure.



Times like... now.



These plants tend to grow in the most inhospitable areas of the earth: high deserts, cold mountains, dry and barren land. And in order to survive there, they develop particular compounds in their physical form which convey a resistance to the environmental stressors. And it just so happens that, lucky for us, when we consume these compounds, we are also gifted with the same experience.



These plant chemicals help to regulate our immune, physiological and neurological responses to stress, allowing us to survive not only rough environmental/weather challenges, but also to adapt and adjust our often neurotic mental habits and crazy social/political climates as well.



Rhodiola is the supreme queen of this class of plants, in my humble opinion. Indigenous to the mountainous regions of Siberia and Northern Europe, it has been used for thousands of years to help people survive cold winters and high altitudes. Some think that it has been kept a little bit secret from the rest of the world for the last 50 years, utilized by the Russian population to improve their physical stamina in both the Olympic games and their cosmonaut program (I can't really blame them if they did - this plant is incredible), but awareness of this incredible healer is now spreading, and research done around the world is confirming what their culture has known for centuries.



Here are four reasons why I think you would benefit from taking Rhodiola; just a brief sampling of the many wonderful effects it can have in your body:



1. Amps up your energy:



Rhodiola increases the oxygen-carrying capacity of our red blood cells, making it particularly effective at increasing energy, vitality and stamina during times of stress. As most of us don't breathe fully when we're in a panicked state or exercising hard, Rhodiola can offset this inevitable increase in carbon dioxide and lactic acid/decrease in oxygen, to make us feel stronger and calmer even when life is crazy. I’ve found this to be particularly good in women who are consistently battling low-grade anemia, as well as for older people who are lagging in energy.



2. Reduces the amount of stress your body (and mind) experience when SHTF:



Rhodiola has a calming effect on our body and mental state because of an ability to reduce cortisol, one of our major stress hormones. While some cortisol is absolutely necessary to live -- this is the hormone that is released from your adrenal glands in a cyclic manner during the day or during times of stress -- most of us exist in a state of nearly constant exposure to this compound, resulting in lowered blood sugar response, abdominal weight gain, decreased memory, reduced cellular energy production, and diminished immunity. Through reducing cortisol and balancing the endocrine system (your hypothalamus, who talks to the rest of the body to let it know when to release what, your pituitary, who is the translator for the hypothalamus, and your adrenals, specifically), rhodiola helps to not only reduce this constant release of cortisol, but also to balance and heal the whole communication network more long term. This results in, predictably, improved memory and focus, better energy levels, increased resistance to sickness, and significantly better insulin response. Also helps with binge eating (which often happens because of excess cortisol)!



3. Helps you burn belly fat (oh yes… we all love that one!)



So, not only does Rhodiola reduce the cortisol and blood sugar aspect of the belly fat equation, but it also turns on an enzyme called 'hormone-sensitive lipase', a substance which allows your body to access and utilize the fat stored in abdominal cells. This aids your body in losing weight, not because it's deprived or over-exercising, but because it is balanced and feels loved. Like Grover on Sesame Street says: “ehverybahdee wants to feel loved, right?” Your body is no exception, friends. In the absence of love towards our physical form, plants like Rhodiola can temporarily substitute and give us a sense of gratitude for all our bodies do.



4. Makes you smart. Like really, really smart.



From the mental side of things, Rhodiola also increases the sensitivity of your neurons (them thinkin’cells in your brain) to the presence of dopamine and serotonin, two neurotransmitters involved in focus, memory, pleasure, mood, and a whole bunch of other nice feelings. This plant has been used as an extremely effective alternative to antidepressants, and can be a welcome mental boost for just about anyone (unless you're experiencing symptoms of bipolar mania. Not a good idea). As an added bonus, the increase in dopamine sensitivity increases your enjoyment of food, sex, and other good things, as well as reducing carbohydrate cravings and addictions. Rhodiola as an alternative to ADHD pharmaceutical drugs makes complete sense, as they're both working on the same neurological pathways. And thankfully, unlike prescription medication, Rhodiola won't blow out your kidneys and liver, stagnate your growth, or give your heart palpitations.



If you're going to give this lovely herb a try, just make sure to get a supplement that is guaranteed Siberian-grown. Because the plants need exposure to stress in order to develop these compounds (called Rosavins, if you're interested), the ones that are grown in more temperate or hospitable places won't have any effect on our bodies. I'm particularly fond of the New Chapter brand, and tend to recommend people to take the 300 mg capsule once a day in the morning to start.



There's no potential for addiction or dependency, and eventually, hopefully, you won't need to take the Rhodiola because it will have, not only balanced your physical state, but given you the opportunity to work on your mental and emotional responses to the world around you, creating new, healthy, neurological pathways. As I mentioned before, if you've got any kind of mania going on or are on an MAOI, don't take this. People with high blood pressure don't benefit from it either.



The plant world is incredible, and is forever supplying us with what we need in order to, not only survive, but thrive on this planet. Taken as an opportunity to both heal yourself and to cultivate appreciation for the world around you, supplementing with Rhodiola can change big things.



Lack of effect of Rhodiola or oxygenated water supplementation on hypoxemia and oxidative stress. - PubMed - NCBI
Lack of effect of Rhodiola or oxygenated water supplementation on hypoxemia and oxidative stress.

Wing SL1, Askew EW, Luetkemeier MJ, Ryujin DT, Kamimori GH, Grissom CK.



Author information



Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

This study investigated the effects of 2 potentially "oxygen promoting" dietary supplements on hypoxia and oxidative stress at a simulated altitude of 4600 m.

METHODS:

Fifteen volunteers (ages 20-33) received 3 separate 60-minute hypoxic exposures by breathing 13.6% oxygen at an ambient barometric pressure of 633 mm Hg (simulating the partial pressure of oxygen at 4600 m elevation). Each subject received, in random order, treatments of a 7-day supply of placebo, Rhodiola rosea, and an acute dose of stabilized oxygen dissolved in water. Arterialized capillary blood oxygen samples (PcO2) were measured at baseline and at 30 and 60 minutes of exposure. Pulse oximeter oxyhemoglobin saturation (SaO2) was measured at baseline and at every 10 minutes of hypoxic exposure. Oxidative stress markers measured included baseline and 60-minute exposure serum lipid peroxides (LPO) and urine malondialdehyde (MDA).

RESULTS:

For each treatment group, PcO2 decreased by approximately 38% from baseline to 60-minute hypoxic exposure. Similarly, SaO2 also decreased among groups from approximately 97 to 81%. Serum lipid peroxides increased significantly in the placebo group and decreased significantly from baseline in response to the stabilized oxygen treatment (P = .02); there was a trend for decreased LPO with the Rhodiola treatment (P = .10). There were no significant changes for MDA among groups.

CONCLUSIONS:

The 2 dietary supplements investigated did not have a significant effect on blood oxygenation after 60 minutes of sedentary hypoxic exposure. Hypoxia-induced oxidative stress was observed in the control group only. Both supplements appeared not to increase oxidative stress and may decrease free radical formation after hypoxic exposure compared with the control.

NOTE
While the study suggest there was little effect and no impact on oxygen carrying ability the key here that it does show is the neuroprotective aspect, and at minimal time and dosing.

Rhodiola rosea root (golden root) in Russian herbal medicine
Rhodiola rosea
Rhodiola rosea is an adaptogen (as defined by Israel Brekhman, PhD) that has been shown to raise oxygen partition in arteries and blood saturation level and to lower blood viscosity while enhancing peripheral circulation. It improved total circulation, oxygen uptake, and nutrient transport to the tissues while preventing hypoxy-related free radical generation. It has improved performance of athletes and those in high altitudes. Clinical research with healthy subjects showed improvement in hearing, recovery from exercise, fat loss, liver detoxification, tumor resistance, and improved sexual function with normalization of prostate in males, with no toxicity reported. It helps normalize mood by maintaining optimal levels of serotonin and other neurotransmitters in the brain. Rhodiola Rosea also known as Arctic root or golden root, is a member of the family Crassulaceae, a family of plants native to the arctic regions of eastern Siberia. It grows at altitudes of 11,000 to 18,000 feet above sea level. As an herb, it grows approximately 2 ? feet high and has yellow flowers whose smell is similar to attar of roses, thus imparting its name. Rhodiola is classified as an adaptogen meaning that it has a nonspecific ability to assist the body to withstand stress and maintain normalcy even when threatened with pathological conditions. As such it is similar to a number of other herbs classified as adaptogenic including Elutherococcus, Aralia, chaga fungus sclerotia , Schisandra, ginseng, codonopsis and Leuzea. In Siberia it is said that "those who drink Rhodiola tea regularly will live more than 100 years." Chinese emperors always looking for the secret to long life and immortality sent expeditions into Siberia to collect and bring back the plant. Being one of the most popular medicinal herbs of middle Asia, for many years Rhodiola has been illegally traffiked across the Russian border to China. In Siberia it was taken regularly especially during the cold and wet winters to prevent sickness. In Mongolia it was used for the treatment of tuberculosis and cancer. In the ancient world both Rhodiola and its ginseng cousin were known to bring the spirit of jolliness or hilarity to those people who used them regularly. The great health attributes that the ancients recognised in these remarkable herbs have how now been abundantly confirmed by numerous modern research studies. (Reference: Arctic Root (Rhodiola Rosea): The Powerful New Ginseng Alternative by Carl Germano, R.D., C.N.S. L.D.N. published by Kensington Health Books) More References
Rhodiola Rosea Summary
•Rhodiola rosea counteracts the effects of stress and reduces the cortisol stress hormone that ultimately causes many age related diseases.
•Rhodiola helps cardiac problems related to stress by decreasing the levels of catecholamines and corticosteroids released by the adrenal glands under stress conditions.
•Rhodiola, extracts rosavin and salidroside, in animal studies have improved the transport of serotonin precursors, tryptophan, and 5-hydroxytryptophan in the brain.
•Rhodiola normalizes hormones by modulating the release of glucocorticoid into the body.
•Rhodiola decreases harmful blood lipids and decreases the risk of heart disease.
•Rhodiola helps to properly regulate the heart beat thereby counteracting heart arrhythmias.
•Rhodiola stimulates and protects the immune system by promoting metabolic homeostasis.
•Rhodiola has potent antioxidant brain protecting properties.
•Russian researchers have found that Rhodiola inhibited tumor growth in rats by 39 percent and Rhodiola rosea resulted in significant increased survival rate.
•Rhodiola has significantly increased survival in cases of cancers of glandular tissue such as the breast and the lung.
•Rhodiola improves the ratio of lean body mass to fat and increases hemoglobin and erythrocytes levels.
•Rhodiola improves hearing and mental concentration.
•Rhodiola helps with burns to inhibit the progression of pyorrhea.
•Rhodiola helps regulate blood sugar levels for diabetics.
•Rhodiola protects the liver from toxins.
Reducing the Risks of High Cortisol - 2 - Life Extension



Reducing the Risks of High Cortisol

By Jan Whiticomb

By Jan Whiticomb




Enhanced Longevity

Scientists have found that rhodiola possesses the power to restore malfunctioning biological systems, a key factor in reducing the detrimental effects of aging. In testing multiple organisms, rhodiola was found to enhance healthy responses to negative environmental stressors that include oxidative stress, acute and chronic heat shocks, and toxic chemical exposure.15

In the laboratory, rhodiola was found to protect human cells from premature aging when they were exposed to oxidative stress. Again, scientists used the compound derived from rhodiola called salidroside.16 Salidroside further preserves aging skin cells’ ability to reproduce, thereby creating healthier, more vital skin. One group of scientists found that the salidroside in rhodiola dramatically diminishes pathologic symptoms of aging in laboratory mice by preventing accumulation of inflammatory advanced glycation end products (AGEs).17

Further bolstering rhodiola’s anti-aging credentials is a recent study showing that rhodiola extract helps slow the aging process while extending life span.18 During this study, scientists administered rhodiola extract in the diet to a group of fruit flies. A control group did not receive the dietary rhodiola. The rhodiola-supplemented fruit flies demonstrated a 10% longer life span, compared with control subjects. When examined more closely, it was clear that the rhodiola-supplemented animals displayed decelerated aging, compared with subjects that did not receive the herb.19

Of important note, rhodiola’s anti-aging and longevity-promoting effects appeared to be independent of any special diet.19 This is of vital importance because it suggests that rhodiola provides longevity benefits through a mechanism separate from caloric restriction, which, as Life Extension readers know, is the best-documented method to increase life span to date.20

The possibility that rhodiola could act through a novel mechanism to forestall aging and lengthen life span is remarkable news for the anti-aging community.

Bolstering Heart Health

Heart disease remains the number one killer, and doctors report that many cardiac events are stress induced.21,22

Stress, whether physical or emotional, puts extra strain on the heart and other muscles. Numerous studies suggest that rhodiola exerts several protective benefits for the heart.23

A probable link between the administration of Rhodiola rosea extract and prevention of arrhythmia (potentially dangerous abnormal heart rhythms) was discovered in a recent study.24 The study involved test animals receiving Rhodiola rosea each day for 8 straight days. They were then subjected to an agent known to disrupt heart rhythm. Pre-treatment with rhodiola protected the animals against experimentally induced arrhythmia and electrical instability of the heart. The animals who received rhodiola were less vulnerable to heart damage caused by experimentally induced myocardial infarction (heart attack).

Bolstering Heart Health

Another animal study highlights further potential cardioprotective benefits of rhodiola. In an animal model of coronary artery disease, rhodiola helped decrease the heart muscle’s oxygen consumption while increasing oxygen supply to the myocardium, helping to ensure that the heart muscle has enough oxygen required for optimal function.25

This evidence, combined with earlier animal studies suggesting rhodiola’s ability to reduce cardiac stress-related damage,23 supports the need for further in-depth studies of rhodiola’s cardiovascular benefits in humans.


System-Wide Age Reversal



Reduces Stress

Lowers levels of cortisol7
Restores normal physiological response to stress64
Fights stress-induced despair64
Restores brain cells in areas damaged by stress-induced depression45,46


Protects the Heart

Prevents stress- and ischemia-induced heart muscle damage65-67
Increases heart muscle cell tolerance to ischemia68
Prevents stress- and heart attack-induced arrhythmias26,69-72
Reduces size of heart muscle infarction (tissue death)62-64,68
Promotes new cardiac blood vessel growth after heart attack66,73-75


Protects the Liver

Prevents toxin- and oxidative stress-induced liver cell damage26-29
Reduces serum markers of liver dysfunction76
Restores depleted liver stores of natural antioxidants26


Prevents Cancer

Inhibits proliferation of human leukemia cells77
Inhibits growth, induces death of human cancer cells78-81
Reduces new blood vessel formation (angiogenesis) in tumors82


Protects Against Radiation

Increases survival following otherwise lethal total-body irradiation83
Reduces radiation-induced lipid oxidation83
Scavenges radiation-induced free radicals83
Prevents anemia from red blood cell membrane damage83


Modulates the Immune System

Anti-inflammatory effects in settings of excessive inflammation30,41
Stimulates appropriate immune responses84,85
Boosts immune response to vaccines33
Antiviral effects against hepatitis C, influenza, and Coxsackie virus (cause of viral myocarditis)34-36
Antibacterial effects against Staph aureus and tuberculosis37,38
Combines with other adaptogens to boost suppressed immune function following chemotherapy86



Vital Organ Function and Enhanced Immunity

As the major detoxifier for the body, the liver processes countless amounts of toxins and removes them from our body. Rhodiola species support natural antioxidant systems in the liver and protect liver cells from damage by toxins and oxidative stress.26-29 As adaptogens, rhodiola species also carefully modulate the immune system, increasing its response to real threats of infection or malignancy, while preventing excessive inflammation.30-32 A species of rhodiola was found to modulate the immune system to promote a healthy response to certain vaccinations.33 Rhodiola potently inhibits tissue inflammatory responses to irritating drugs, preventing skin redness, swelling, and pain following exposure to the antifungal drug nystatin.30

Rhodiola species possess direct antiviral and antibacterial activities, which may reduce the risk of serious infections.34-38 For example, Rhodiola rosea inhibits the enzymes that flu viruses use to attach to and invade the cells of the respiratory tract, reducing your chances of catching the flu following an exposure.35

Combating Brain Aging

Combating Brain Aging

The neurodegeneration in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases occurs as a result of inflammation in the nervous system coupled with the accumulation of harmful, pro-oxidant proteins that trigger even more inflammation and ultimately brain cell destruction. Constituents from rhodiola species such as salidroside display powerful antioxidant properties that prevent oxidative, pro-inflammatory effects as well as the formation of these proteins and the subsequent inflammatory cascade.39-43 Fewer brain cells die from oxidative stress.40,44

Nerve cells in the memory centers of the brain resist age-related damage and produce more beneficial neurotransmitters after treatment with rhodiola.45,46

Both short- and long-term memory enhancements have been demonstrated with rhodiola.47-49 Mental performance and acuity under experimentally induced adverse conditions, such as test-taking or sleep deprivation, are also significantly improved.7-9,11

Rhodiola species help aging humans fall asleep faster, longer, and with improved quality of rest.50,51 In one study of men with sleep disturbances, rhodiola increased the amount of time spent in healthful REM sleep, reduced total wakeful time during the night, and markedly increased the “efficiency” of sleep sessions.51 Greater blood oxygenation during sleep was also observed—a key longevity factor.


What Is An “Adaptogen?


The concept of “adaptogens” is thousands of years old and is an important feature of ancient medical systems in the mountains of Asia and in northern Europe.87 The modern term was coined in 1947 by a Russian scientist who defined an “adaptogen” as an agent that allows an organism to counteract and resist a variety of stressors.88 In 2001, noted nutrition scientist Gregory S. Kelly updated and strengthened criteria for defining an adaptogen, requiring that any one adaptogen:88
•Produce an increase in power of resistance against multiple stressors, including physical, chemical, or biological agents
•Normalize physiology, helping the body maintain youthful function, regardless of the cause of stress
•Normalize bodily functions beyond what is required to gain resistance to stress naturally.

Adaptogens exert a normalizing effect,87 allowing organisms to increase healthy functions that are impaired by stress, and to decrease unhealthy responses that are triggered by stress, without any risk of “overshooting” and creating an unbalanced response. Scientists use the term “homeostasis” to describe your body’s ability to maintain physiological function within certain parameters, including temperature, respiratory rate, and blood chemistry within tightly controlled limits. In mainstream language, then, adaptogens simply enhance the body’s ability to maintain homeostasis and fight age-inducing stress.5


Physical Performance

Physical activity and moderate exercise have multiple health benefits, but they also induce injury from oxidative stress, muscle cell damage, and inflammation. There is an important role, therefore, for adaptogens such as rhodiola in mitigating exercise-induced stress. Russian athletes have been known to use adaptogens to promote endurance and improve performance.

Physical Performance

Rhodiola increased antioxidant blood levels and minimized oxidative stress-induced muscle damage in trained athletes for up to 24 hours after strenuous activity.52,53 One study showed an increase in the time to exhaustion during exercise, with significant increases in oxygen delivery to muscle tissues during the workout as well.54

Rhodiola species have been used for centuries by villagers living high in the Himalayas to enhance their resistance to the effects of oxygen deprivation and to boost their endurance for strenuous tasks.55 Those effects prove equally beneficial at more moderate altitudes. During exercise, rhodiola helps people work out longer, increasing their oxygen uptake and decreasing muscle damage.53,54 Long-term supplementation boosts energy storage capacity and blood oxygen level prior to exercise, further enhancing exercise capacity and endurance.55

Rhodiola species protect internal organs from the low oxygen levels found at higher altitudes and that also occur during heart attacks and strokes.56,57 A 2011 study revealed something of even greater significance: rhodiola prevents a phenomenon known as vascular remodeling in lung tissue at high altitudes.58


Not All Rhodiola Is the Same


The authentic Rhodiola rosea species validated in clinical research is wildcrafted from the forests of the Altai Mountains of Siberia. The raw materials are harvested after a minimum of four years of growth, according to the World Health Organization Guidelines of Good Agricultural Practices. This practice of sustainable stewardship preserves the natural resources of rhodiola’s native habitat.

Some rhodiola extracts are standardized to salidroside content only. Salidroside content is not specific to the Rhodiola genus only and is not the only beneficial constituent of rhodiola. Highly beneficial Rhodiola rosea extracts contain a ratio of rosavin and salidroside phytochemicals similar to that which is found in the authentic plant itself.


Vascular remodeling describes the thickening of pulmonary blood vessels that contributes to increased blood pressure in the lungs, a condition known as pulmonary hypertension.59 Chronic exposure to high altitude is just one cause of this condition, which leads rapidly to congestive heart failure.60,61 More common causes of pulmonary hypertension include cardiovascular disease, obesity, and obstructive sleep apnea.59,62 Rhodiola’s ability to prevent vascular remodeling, then, may represent an important and sorely needed new approach to managing a major cause of death and disability in older adults.63

Rhodiola

Summary

Rhodiola is a cortisol suppressing herb that is becoming an increasingly popular dietary intervention in the United States.

It is one of a handful of known adaptogens—plant-based compounds known to support long, healthy life span in part by exerting system-wide protective and restorative effects.

Rhodiola has been shown to favorably modulate the stress response, restore vital organ function, and boost immunity. It is a low-cost nutrient that combats cognitive dysfunction, minimizing depression and anxiety, while enhancing muscle performance, endurance, and circulatory health.

If you have any questions on the scientific content of this article, please call a Life Extension® Health Advisor at
1-866-864-3027.

References

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24. Maslov LN, Lishmanov IuB. Cardioprotective and antiarrhythmic properties of Rhodiolae roseae preparations. Eksp Klin Farmakol. 2007 Sep-Oct;70(5):59-67

25. Zhang ZH, Liu JS, Chu JN, et al. The effect of Hongjingtian (Gadol) injection on cardiac hemodynamics and myocardial oxygen consumption of dogs. Zhongguo Zhong Yao Za Zhi. 2005 Jul;30(13):1001-5.

26. Wu YL, Lian LH, Jiang YZ, Nan JX. Hepatoprotective effects of salidroside on fulminant hepatic failure induced by D-galactosamine and lipopolysaccharide in mice. J Pharm Pharmacol. 2009 Oct;61(10):1375-82.

27. Nakamura S, Li X, Matsuda H, et al. Bioactive constituents from Chinese natural medicines. XXVI. Chemical structures and hepatoprotective effects of constituents from roots of Rhodiola sachalinensis. Chem Pharm Bull (Tokyo). 2007 Oct;55(10):1505-11.

28. Song EK, Kim JH, Kim JS, et al. Hepatoprotective phenolic constituents of Rhodiola sachalinensis on tacrine-induced cytotoxicity in Hep G2 cells. Phytother Res. 2003 May;17(5):563-5.

29. Udintsev SN, Krylova SG, Fomina TI. The enhancement of the efficacy of adriamycin by using hepatoprotectors of plant origin in metastases of Ehrlich’s adenocarcinoma to the liver in mice. Vopr Onkol. 1992;38(10):1217-22.

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79. Hu X, Lin S, Yu D, Qiu S, Zhang X, Mei R. A preliminary study: the anti-proliferation effect of salidroside on different human cancer cell lines. Cell Biol Toxicol. 2010 Dec;26(6):499-507.

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Adaptogenic and central nervous system effects of single doses of 3% rosavin and 1% salidroside Rhodiola rosea L. extract in mice. - PubMed - NCBI
Abstract

Rhodiola rosea L., or 'golden root', is a popular plant in traditional medicine in Eastern Europe and Asia, with a reputation for improving depression, enhancing work performance, eliminating fatigue and treating symptoms of asthenia subsequent to intense physical and psychological stress. Due to these therapeutic properties, R. rosea is considered to be one of the most active adaptogenic drugs. To confirm and extend results obtained in the few preclinical and clinical studies available in English language journals, the purpose of the present study was to re-investigate the effects produced by a single oral administration of an R. rosea hydroalcohol extract (containing 3% rosavin and 1% salidroside) on the central nervous system in mice. The extract was tested on antidepressant, adaptogenic, anxiolytic, nociceptive and locomotor activities at doses of 10, 15 and 20 mg/kg, using predictive behavioural tests and animal models. The results show that this R. rosea extract significantly, but not dose-dependently, induced antidepressant-like, adaptogenic, anxiolytic-like and stimulating effects in mice. This study thus provides evidence of the efficacy of R. rosea extracts after a single administration, and confirms many preclinical and clinical studies indicating the adaptogenic and stimulating effects of such R. rosea extracts. Moreover, antidepressant-like and anxiolytic-like activities of R. rosea were shown in mice for the first time.

Rhodiola for Depression - ProgressiveHealth.com
What is Rhodiola?

Rhodiola (Rhodiola rosea) is a perennial herb native to the arctic regions especially the cold regions of China, Russia and other parts of Asia and Europe. It is very common in the wild and grows best in the high altitude areas of these cold regions. In these regions, rhodiola is also known by some other names such as arctic root, rose root, and golden root.

The medicinal benefits of rhodiola root are well-known in Chinese and Russian traditional medicine. It has a long history (dating back to thousands of years) in these cultures as a remedy for various stress-related conditions.

Rhodiola is considered an adaptogen because of its ability to relieve and prevent stress.

An adaptogen increases the body’s resistance (in non-specific ways) to stress triggered by either physiological or psychological factors. Many studies have found that rhodiola has the ability to improve work performance, insomnia, headache, fatigue and depression.

There are six distinct groups of phytochemicals in rhodiola. These groups of phytochemicals are listed in the table below.

Major Phytochemicals of Rhodiola
•Phenylpropanoids: rosavin, rosin, rosarin;
•Phenylethanol derivatives: salidroside (rhodioloside), tyrosol;
•Flavonoids: rodiolin, rodionin, rodiosin, acetylrodalgin, tricin;
•Monoterpenes: rosiridol, rosaridin;
•Triterpenes: daucosterol, beta-sitosterol;
•Phenolic acids: chlorogenic and hydroxycinnamic, gallic acids.



It was previously thought that the phenylethanol derivative, salidroside, was the only bioactive chemical responsible for rhodiola’s therapeutic effects. Recent studies have however established that salidroside and the phenylpropanoids (rosin, rosavin, rosarin and rosaridin) are the main bioactive pharmacological components of rhodiola.

Rosavins is the general term used to refer to all the phenylpropanoids compound present in rhodiola.

Before the discovery of the rosavins, other species of Rhodiola genus were used as herbal medicines in place of Rhodiola rosea. It was later found that only the Rhodiola rosea species contains the essential therapeutic compounds, rosavins.

Due to a better understanding of rhodiola’s phytochemicals, rhodiola root extracts are now standardized to contain at least 3% rosavins and 0.8 - 1% salidroside.

Rosavins and salidroside are known to naturally occur in the ratio of 3:1 in R. rosea root.



How does Rhodiola work?

The antidepressant effects of rhodiola are attributed to the rosavins, rosiridin, and salidroside. These phytochemicals act as monoamine oxidases inhibitors.

Monoamine Neurotransmitters

When you experience changes in mood, especially during depression, the concentrations and/or activities of monoamine neurotransmitters in the brain are reduced.

Neurotransmitters are responsible for transmitting nerve impulses between neurons. Hence, any reduction in their activities interferes with the extensive neuronal communication dependent on these brain chemicals.

Serotonin (also known as 5-HT), for example, is a monoamine neurotransmitter that is involved in the regulation of mood, appetite and sleep. This brain chemical is believed to play a major role in the feelings of well-being and happiness.

In response to low concentration and activity of serotonin in the brain, there will be a dip in mood. This is often what characterizes depression.

Dopamine, on the other hand, contributes to feelings of motivation, reward and mood as well as sleep and attention. Recent studies have shown high levels of dopamine activity in individuals who are outgoing or individuals of extroverted personalities.

Monoamine oxidases are the enzymes responsible for breaking down monoamine neurotransmitters. The major examples of monoamine neurotransmitters are dopamine, serotonin and norepinephrine.

Therefore, to relieve depression and maintain a balanced mental state, the neurotransmitters in the brain need to be restored to normal levels. This can be done either by increase their syntheses or by preventing their breakdown (monoamine oxidase inhibitors).

Rhodiola and Monoamine Neurotransmitters

Rhodiola root extract improves the activities of dopamine and serotonin in the brain by blocking the enzymatic breakdown of these brain chemicals by monoamine oxidases.

In addition, Rhodiola root extract promotes the transport of dopamine and serotonin precursors into the brain by increasing the permeability of the blood brain barrier to these precursors.

Some studies have shown that serotonin levels in the brain can be boosted by as much as 30% with the use of rhodiola root extract. This increase is due to the combination of the two mechanisms stated above.

Rhodiola extract is also known to reduce stress. As an adaptogen, it helps the body adapt to environmental, chemical and physical stressors.

The body responds to stress by releasing a hormone known as cortisol. The adaptogenic effects of rhodiola extract inhibits the release of this stress hormone. This anti-stress action of rhodiola reduces the chances of stress-induced depression.

Lastly, rhodiola extract has the ability to protect human cortical neurons from destruction by hydrogen peroxide radicals and glutamates. The salidroside component of rhodiola extract is believed to be responsible for this neuroprotective action.

Rhodiola as an Adaptogen

A 2002 study published in The Journal of the American Botanical Council, examined the anti-stress activity of Rhodiola rosea extract on the embryos of freshwater snails (Lymnaea stagnalis).

In this study, the larvae of freshwater snails (Lymnaea stagnalis) were exposed to some environmental stressors for a period of 20 hours to 3 days. The environmental stressors used are:
•physical stress (heat shock: 43 degrees Celsius for 4 minutes);
•oxidative stress (reactive oxygen species released by menadione, 600 micromolar, for 2 hours);
•heavy metal-induced stress (copper 150 micromolar or cadmium 20 micromolar for 1 hour).

The results of the study showed that R. rosea extract was able to provide resistance to these environmental stressors in the snails’ larvae.

The combination of the anti-stress, antidepressant and neuroprotective effects of rhodiola extract makes the herb an effective remedy for depression.

Directions for Use

Rhodiola extracts are derived from its root. The extracts are available in form of tablets, capsules and tinctures.

The suggested daily dose of standardized rhodiola extract is between 200 mg and 600 mg. The daily intake can be divided into 2 capsules or tablets. The first dose should be taken in the morning before breakfast and then later in the afternoon just before lunch.

Due to the stimulating action of rhodiola root extract, it can cause insomnia when taken at night.

For the body to gradually develop tolerance to the side effects of rhodiola extract, patients are advised to start from a low dose of 100 mg. Then the dose can gradually be increased with time to as much as 600 mg.

The reaction and response of the body to increased doses should be noted so help determine the appropriate dosage of the herb.

Side Effects and Contraindications

Rhodiola extract is generally considered safe. Unlike other stimulants like caffeine and nicotine, it is non-addictive.

Although mild side effects such as nausea, jitters, anxiety, agitation, hypersalivation, restlessness, and insomnia have been reported, they are thought to be as the result of combining rhodiola extract with other herbs or medications.

For example, consuming a caffeinated beverage such as coffee after taking rhodiola extract can result in over activity and anxiety. Other sources of stimulants such as nicotine gum, cigarettes and teas can also cause these effects when combined with rhodiola.

In addition, rhodiola extract should not be taken after or before a sugary meal (candy, cakes or sweets) to avoid jitters. A spike in the blood’s sugar coupled with the stimulant effect of rhodiola extract can produce this feeling.

Since rhodiola works by promoting the activities of serotonin in the brain, combining the herb with other antidepressants such as SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) can lead to a fatal condition known as serotonin syndrome.

The safety of this herb has not been well demonstrated in pregnant and lactating women. It should therefore be avoided by these groups of patients until proper studies are available to confirm its safety.

Clinical Studies on Rhodiola and Depression

In Animal Models

A 2009 study published in the journal, Phytomedicine, investigated the effect of Rhodiola rosea extract on serotonin levels in the brains of depressed rats.

Seventy depressed rats were divided into seven groups with 10 rats in each group:
•normal control group
•untreated depressive rat model group
•negative control group
•positive control group
•low dosage Rhodiola rosea extract (1.5 g/kg) group
•medium dosage Rhodiola rosea extract (3 g/kg) group
•high dosage Rhodiola rosea extract (6 g/kg) group.

After a period of 3 weeks, the serotonin levels in the brains of the rats were examined by high performance liquid chromatography, a technique for detecting small levels of chemical compounds.

The results of the study showed that the serotonin levels of rats in the three groups given Rhodiola rosea extracts were restored to normal. This result concluded that Rhodiola rosea extract is capable of improving serotonin level in the brains of depressed rats.

A similar study published in the journal, Phytotherapy Research, in 2007 investigated the antidepressant effect of Rhodiola rosea extract in rats.

A hydroalcohol extract of Rhodiola rosea was given to rats at doses of 10, 15 and 20 mg/kg. The study made use of predictive behavioral tests and animal models to assess antidepressant activities in the rats.

The result of the study showed significant antidepressant activities in the behavioral test and animal models of depression. This suggests that hydroalcohol extract of Rhodiola rosea has significant antidepressant effects.

Human Studies

A 2002 study published in the journal, Herbalgram, examined the effectiveness of Rhodiola rosea extract in 150 depressed patients.

The participants in this study were given Rhodiola rose extracts for a period of one month.

The results of the study showed significant improvement and full remission of clinical manifestations of depression in two thirds of the patients. No adverse effects were recorded in the study.

Another 2007 study published in the Nordic Journal of Psychiatry examined the effectiveness of Rhodiola rosea extract in individuals diagnosed with mild to moderate depression. In this study, 89 volunteers between the ages of 18 and 70 participated. They were divided into three groups.

The first group of 29 participants were given 680 mg of Rhodiola rosea extract. Another group of 31 participants were given 340 mg of Rhodiola rosea extract while the remaining 29 participants were given placebo for a period of six weeks.

Severity of depression was assessed based on scores from the Beck Depression Inventory and Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HAMD) questionnaires.

After the 6-week duration of the study, significant improvements in depression, emotional instability and insomnia were demonstrated in the two groups given different doses of Rhodiola rosea extract compared to the placebo group.



Sources


Rhodiola rosea Rose Root PFAF Plant Database

Rhodiola Benefits & Information (Rhodiola Rosea)

http://cms.herbalgram.org/herbalgram/issue56/article2333.html


Rhodiola Rosea >> Side Effects

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The effects of Rhodiola rosea extract on 5-HT level, cell proliferation and quantity of neurons at cerebral hippocampus of depressive rats

www.naturaldispensary.com/downloads/A Research Review of Rhodiola Rosea.pdf

Adaptogenic and central nervous system effects of single doses of 3% rosavin and 1% salidroside Rhodiola rosea L. extract in mice - Perfumi - 2006 - Phytotherapy Research - Wiley Online Library



Rhodiola Rosea Uses, Benefits & Dosage - Drugs.com Herbal Database
Pharmacological and Clinical Studies of Salidroside.Rhodiola Rosea Extract.INCI Name Rhodiola Rosea Root Extract EINECS ELINCS No 306-819-2 CAS 97404-52-9 Salidroside 10338-51-9 Rosavin 84954 -92 -7 Siberian Rhodiola Rosea Root Extract,Rhodiola extra
 

emeric delczeg

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I get lots of questions about what some of the lesser know products I carry do, I am going to help answer that by providing some general information about some of my favorite products.

in reality you can get many of these supplements anywhere, and by all means feel free to explore that. I carry only products that I use, not whats cheapest and what I can make money on.

as most are starting to learn what we see on labels is not always what is in the pills and powders we buy on supplement store shelves. In many cases I have tried various brands or used products for long enough to have gone through several suppliers, what I offer is always the best of what I have found and what I personally use.

rhodiola is one of my favorite supplements and something I live on, for years i have.

all of the supplements I use work on similar things or with a similar idea behind them.

for my needs I have put together combinations that provide serious drug like effects, and when part of my program changes I see a major difference, not one questions weather or not something is "working".

you will see in most cases that the doses I use are substantially higher then what you see recommended, rho for example I often take more then 2000mg ed. I do not suggest anyone do what I do, I do it for my reasons, I will say what I do works.

enjoy!

Rhodiola

I am gona do a lot of copy and paste and make my own notes where appropriate, feel free to join in and share.

4 Ways Rhodiola Could Change Your Life

I was just popping my morning regimen of pre-breakfast vitamins and realized that although these herbs and nutrients are (and have been) such a big part of my healing process, I haven't made them a big enough part of my contributions here. Kinda skipped past the 'body' part of healing and went right into the mind and emotions, which just won't work.



So, without further delay, let's talk about my very most favorite plant of the moment, Rhodiola.



Rhodiola rosea, also called Arctic or Golden Root, is generally placed in a class of plants and fungi affectionately named 'adaptogens'. These are the great healers; the gifts to mankind that the plant community and earth have provided which are incredibly essential to surviving well during times of stress and pressure.



Times like... now.



These plants tend to grow in the most inhospitable areas of the earth: high deserts, cold mountains, dry and barren land. And in order to survive there, they develop particular compounds in their physical form which convey a resistance to the environmental stressors. And it just so happens that, lucky for us, when we consume these compounds, we are also gifted with the same experience.



These plant chemicals help to regulate our immune, physiological and neurological responses to stress, allowing us to survive not only rough environmental/weather challenges, but also to adapt and adjust our often neurotic mental habits and crazy social/political climates as well.



Rhodiola is the supreme queen of this class of plants, in my humble opinion. Indigenous to the mountainous regions of Siberia and Northern Europe, it has been used for thousands of years to help people survive cold winters and high altitudes. Some think that it has been kept a little bit secret from the rest of the world for the last 50 years, utilized by the Russian population to improve their physical stamina in both the Olympic games and their cosmonaut program (I can't really blame them if they did - this plant is incredible), but awareness of this incredible healer is now spreading, and research done around the world is confirming what their culture has known for centuries.



Here are four reasons why I think you would benefit from taking Rhodiola; just a brief sampling of the many wonderful effects it can have in your body:



1. Amps up your energy:



Rhodiola increases the oxygen-carrying capacity of our red blood cells, making it particularly effective at increasing energy, vitality and stamina during times of stress. As most of us don't breathe fully when we're in a panicked state or exercising hard, Rhodiola can offset this inevitable increase in carbon dioxide and lactic acid/decrease in oxygen, to make us feel stronger and calmer even when life is crazy. I’ve found this to be particularly good in women who are consistently battling low-grade anemia, as well as for older people who are lagging in energy.



2. Reduces the amount of stress your body (and mind) experience when SHTF:



Rhodiola has a calming effect on our body and mental state because of an ability to reduce cortisol, one of our major stress hormones. While some cortisol is absolutely necessary to live -- this is the hormone that is released from your adrenal glands in a cyclic manner during the day or during times of stress -- most of us exist in a state of nearly constant exposure to this compound, resulting in lowered blood sugar response, abdominal weight gain, decreased memory, reduced cellular energy production, and diminished immunity. Through reducing cortisol and balancing the endocrine system (your hypothalamus, who talks to the rest of the body to let it know when to release what, your pituitary, who is the translator for the hypothalamus, and your adrenals, specifically), rhodiola helps to not only reduce this constant release of cortisol, but also to balance and heal the whole communication network more long term. This results in, predictably, improved memory and focus, better energy levels, increased resistance to sickness, and significantly better insulin response. Also helps with binge eating (which often happens because of excess cortisol)!



3. Helps you burn belly fat (oh yes… we all love that one!)



So, not only does Rhodiola reduce the cortisol and blood sugar aspect of the belly fat equation, but it also turns on an enzyme called 'hormone-sensitive lipase', a substance which allows your body to access and utilize the fat stored in abdominal cells. This aids your body in losing weight, not because it's deprived or over-exercising, but because it is balanced and feels loved. Like Grover on Sesame Street says: “ehverybahdee wants to feel loved, right?” Your body is no exception, friends. In the absence of love towards our physical form, plants like Rhodiola can temporarily substitute and give us a sense of gratitude for all our bodies do.



4. Makes you smart. Like really, really smart.



From the mental side of things, Rhodiola also increases the sensitivity of your neurons (them thinkin’cells in your brain) to the presence of dopamine and serotonin, two neurotransmitters involved in focus, memory, pleasure, mood, and a whole bunch of other nice feelings. This plant has been used as an extremely effective alternative to antidepressants, and can be a welcome mental boost for just about anyone (unless you're experiencing symptoms of bipolar mania. Not a good idea). As an added bonus, the increase in dopamine sensitivity increases your enjoyment of food, sex, and other good things, as well as reducing carbohydrate cravings and addictions. Rhodiola as an alternative to ADHD pharmaceutical drugs makes complete sense, as they're both working on the same neurological pathways. And thankfully, unlike prescription medication, Rhodiola won't blow out your kidneys and liver, stagnate your growth, or give your heart palpitations.



If you're going to give this lovely herb a try, just make sure to get a supplement that is guaranteed Siberian-grown. Because the plants need exposure to stress in order to develop these compounds (called Rosavins, if you're interested), the ones that are grown in more temperate or hospitable places won't have any effect on our bodies. I'm particularly fond of the New Chapter brand, and tend to recommend people to take the 300 mg capsule once a day in the morning to start.



There's no potential for addiction or dependency, and eventually, hopefully, you won't need to take the Rhodiola because it will have, not only balanced your physical state, but given you the opportunity to work on your mental and emotional responses to the world around you, creating new, healthy, neurological pathways. As I mentioned before, if you've got any kind of mania going on or are on an MAOI, don't take this. People with high blood pressure don't benefit from it either.



The plant world is incredible, and is forever supplying us with what we need in order to, not only survive, but thrive on this planet. Taken as an opportunity to both heal yourself and to cultivate appreciation for the world around you, supplementing with Rhodiola can change big things.



Lack of effect of Rhodiola or oxygenated water supplementation on hypoxemia and oxidative stress. - PubMed - NCBI
Lack of effect of Rhodiola or oxygenated water supplementation on hypoxemia and oxidative stress.

Wing SL1, Askew EW, Luetkemeier MJ, Ryujin DT, Kamimori GH, Grissom CK.



Author information



Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

This study investigated the effects of 2 potentially "oxygen promoting" dietary supplements on hypoxia and oxidative stress at a simulated altitude of 4600 m.

METHODS:

Fifteen volunteers (ages 20-33) received 3 separate 60-minute hypoxic exposures by breathing 13.6% oxygen at an ambient barometric pressure of 633 mm Hg (simulating the partial pressure of oxygen at 4600 m elevation). Each subject received, in random order, treatments of a 7-day supply of placebo, Rhodiola rosea, and an acute dose of stabilized oxygen dissolved in water. Arterialized capillary blood oxygen samples (PcO2) were measured at baseline and at 30 and 60 minutes of exposure. Pulse oximeter oxyhemoglobin saturation (SaO2) was measured at baseline and at every 10 minutes of hypoxic exposure. Oxidative stress markers measured included baseline and 60-minute exposure serum lipid peroxides (LPO) and urine malondialdehyde (MDA).

RESULTS:

For each treatment group, PcO2 decreased by approximately 38% from baseline to 60-minute hypoxic exposure. Similarly, SaO2 also decreased among groups from approximately 97 to 81%. Serum lipid peroxides increased significantly in the placebo group and decreased significantly from baseline in response to the stabilized oxygen treatment (P = .02); there was a trend for decreased LPO with the Rhodiola treatment (P = .10). There were no significant changes for MDA among groups.

CONCLUSIONS:

The 2 dietary supplements investigated did not have a significant effect on blood oxygenation after 60 minutes of sedentary hypoxic exposure. Hypoxia-induced oxidative stress was observed in the control group only. Both supplements appeared not to increase oxidative stress and may decrease free radical formation after hypoxic exposure compared with the control.

NOTE
While the study suggest there was little effect and no impact on oxygen carrying ability the key here that it does show is the neuroprotective aspect, and at minimal time and dosing.

Rhodiola rosea root (golden root) in Russian herbal medicine
Rhodiola rosea
Rhodiola rosea is an adaptogen (as defined by Israel Brekhman, PhD) that has been shown to raise oxygen partition in arteries and blood saturation level and to lower blood viscosity while enhancing peripheral circulation. It improved total circulation, oxygen uptake, and nutrient transport to the tissues while preventing hypoxy-related free radical generation. It has improved performance of athletes and those in high altitudes. Clinical research with healthy subjects showed improvement in hearing, recovery from exercise, fat loss, liver detoxification, tumor resistance, and improved sexual function with normalization of prostate in males, with no toxicity reported. It helps normalize mood by maintaining optimal levels of serotonin and other neurotransmitters in the brain. Rhodiola Rosea also known as Arctic root or golden root, is a member of the family Crassulaceae, a family of plants native to the arctic regions of eastern Siberia. It grows at altitudes of 11,000 to 18,000 feet above sea level. As an herb, it grows approximately 2 ? feet high and has yellow flowers whose smell is similar to attar of roses, thus imparting its name. Rhodiola is classified as an adaptogen meaning that it has a nonspecific ability to assist the body to withstand stress and maintain normalcy even when threatened with pathological conditions. As such it is similar to a number of other herbs classified as adaptogenic including Elutherococcus, Aralia, chaga fungus sclerotia , Schisandra, ginseng, codonopsis and Leuzea. In Siberia it is said that "those who drink Rhodiola tea regularly will live more than 100 years." Chinese emperors always looking for the secret to long life and immortality sent expeditions into Siberia to collect and bring back the plant. Being one of the most popular medicinal herbs of middle Asia, for many years Rhodiola has been illegally traffiked across the Russian border to China. In Siberia it was taken regularly especially during the cold and wet winters to prevent sickness. In Mongolia it was used for the treatment of tuberculosis and cancer. In the ancient world both Rhodiola and its ginseng cousin were known to bring the spirit of jolliness or hilarity to those people who used them regularly. The great health attributes that the ancients recognised in these remarkable herbs have how now been abundantly confirmed by numerous modern research studies. (Reference: Arctic Root (Rhodiola Rosea): The Powerful New Ginseng Alternative by Carl Germano, R.D., C.N.S. L.D.N. published by Kensington Health Books) More References
Rhodiola Rosea Summary
•Rhodiola rosea counteracts the effects of stress and reduces the cortisol stress hormone that ultimately causes many age related diseases.
•Rhodiola helps cardiac problems related to stress by decreasing the levels of catecholamines and corticosteroids released by the adrenal glands under stress conditions.
•Rhodiola, extracts rosavin and salidroside, in animal studies have improved the transport of serotonin precursors, tryptophan, and 5-hydroxytryptophan in the brain.
•Rhodiola normalizes hormones by modulating the release of glucocorticoid into the body.
•Rhodiola decreases harmful blood lipids and decreases the risk of heart disease.
•Rhodiola helps to properly regulate the heart beat thereby counteracting heart arrhythmias.
•Rhodiola stimulates and protects the immune system by promoting metabolic homeostasis.
•Rhodiola has potent antioxidant brain protecting properties.
•Russian researchers have found that Rhodiola inhibited tumor growth in rats by 39 percent and Rhodiola rosea resulted in significant increased survival rate.
•Rhodiola has significantly increased survival in cases of cancers of glandular tissue such as the breast and the lung.
•Rhodiola improves the ratio of lean body mass to fat and increases hemoglobin and erythrocytes levels.
•Rhodiola improves hearing and mental concentration.
•Rhodiola helps with burns to inhibit the progression of pyorrhea.
•Rhodiola helps regulate blood sugar levels for diabetics.
•Rhodiola protects the liver from toxins.
Reducing the Risks of High Cortisol - 2 - Life Extension



Reducing the Risks of High Cortisol

By Jan Whiticomb

By Jan Whiticomb




Enhanced Longevity

Scientists have found that rhodiola possesses the power to restore malfunctioning biological systems, a key factor in reducing the detrimental effects of aging. In testing multiple organisms, rhodiola was found to enhance healthy responses to negative environmental stressors that include oxidative stress, acute and chronic heat shocks, and toxic chemical exposure.15

In the laboratory, rhodiola was found to protect human cells from premature aging when they were exposed to oxidative stress. Again, scientists used the compound derived from rhodiola called salidroside.16 Salidroside further preserves aging skin cells’ ability to reproduce, thereby creating healthier, more vital skin. One group of scientists found that the salidroside in rhodiola dramatically diminishes pathologic symptoms of aging in laboratory mice by preventing accumulation of inflammatory advanced glycation end products (AGEs).17

Further bolstering rhodiola’s anti-aging credentials is a recent study showing that rhodiola extract helps slow the aging process while extending life span.18 During this study, scientists administered rhodiola extract in the diet to a group of fruit flies. A control group did not receive the dietary rhodiola. The rhodiola-supplemented fruit flies demonstrated a 10% longer life span, compared with control subjects. When examined more closely, it was clear that the rhodiola-supplemented animals displayed decelerated aging, compared with subjects that did not receive the herb.19

Of important note, rhodiola’s anti-aging and longevity-promoting effects appeared to be independent of any special diet.19 This is of vital importance because it suggests that rhodiola provides longevity benefits through a mechanism separate from caloric restriction, which, as Life Extension readers know, is the best-documented method to increase life span to date.20

The possibility that rhodiola could act through a novel mechanism to forestall aging and lengthen life span is remarkable news for the anti-aging community.

Bolstering Heart Health

Heart disease remains the number one killer, and doctors report that many cardiac events are stress induced.21,22

Stress, whether physical or emotional, puts extra strain on the heart and other muscles. Numerous studies suggest that rhodiola exerts several protective benefits for the heart.23

A probable link between the administration of Rhodiola rosea extract and prevention of arrhythmia (potentially dangerous abnormal heart rhythms) was discovered in a recent study.24 The study involved test animals receiving Rhodiola rosea each day for 8 straight days. They were then subjected to an agent known to disrupt heart rhythm. Pre-treatment with rhodiola protected the animals against experimentally induced arrhythmia and electrical instability of the heart. The animals who received rhodiola were less vulnerable to heart damage caused by experimentally induced myocardial infarction (heart attack).

Bolstering Heart Health

Another animal study highlights further potential cardioprotective benefits of rhodiola. In an animal model of coronary artery disease, rhodiola helped decrease the heart muscle’s oxygen consumption while increasing oxygen supply to the myocardium, helping to ensure that the heart muscle has enough oxygen required for optimal function.25

This evidence, combined with earlier animal studies suggesting rhodiola’s ability to reduce cardiac stress-related damage,23 supports the need for further in-depth studies of rhodiola’s cardiovascular benefits in humans.


System-Wide Age Reversal



Reduces Stress

Lowers levels of cortisol7
Restores normal physiological response to stress64
Fights stress-induced despair64
Restores brain cells in areas damaged by stress-induced depression45,46


Protects the Heart

Prevents stress- and ischemia-induced heart muscle damage65-67
Increases heart muscle cell tolerance to ischemia68
Prevents stress- and heart attack-induced arrhythmias26,69-72
Reduces size of heart muscle infarction (tissue death)62-64,68
Promotes new cardiac blood vessel growth after heart attack66,73-75


Protects the Liver

Prevents toxin- and oxidative stress-induced liver cell damage26-29
Reduces serum markers of liver dysfunction76
Restores depleted liver stores of natural antioxidants26


Prevents Cancer

Inhibits proliferation of human leukemia cells77
Inhibits growth, induces death of human cancer cells78-81
Reduces new blood vessel formation (angiogenesis) in tumors82


Protects Against Radiation

Increases survival following otherwise lethal total-body irradiation83
Reduces radiation-induced lipid oxidation83
Scavenges radiation-induced free radicals83
Prevents anemia from red blood cell membrane damage83


Modulates the Immune System

Anti-inflammatory effects in settings of excessive inflammation30,41
Stimulates appropriate immune responses84,85
Boosts immune response to vaccines33
Antiviral effects against hepatitis C, influenza, and Coxsackie virus (cause of viral myocarditis)34-36
Antibacterial effects against Staph aureus and tuberculosis37,38
Combines with other adaptogens to boost suppressed immune function following chemotherapy86



Vital Organ Function and Enhanced Immunity

As the major detoxifier for the body, the liver processes countless amounts of toxins and removes them from our body. Rhodiola species support natural antioxidant systems in the liver and protect liver cells from damage by toxins and oxidative stress.26-29 As adaptogens, rhodiola species also carefully modulate the immune system, increasing its response to real threats of infection or malignancy, while preventing excessive inflammation.30-32 A species of rhodiola was found to modulate the immune system to promote a healthy response to certain vaccinations.33 Rhodiola potently inhibits tissue inflammatory responses to irritating drugs, preventing skin redness, swelling, and pain following exposure to the antifungal drug nystatin.30

Rhodiola species possess direct antiviral and antibacterial activities, which may reduce the risk of serious infections.34-38 For example, Rhodiola rosea inhibits the enzymes that flu viruses use to attach to and invade the cells of the respiratory tract, reducing your chances of catching the flu following an exposure.35

Combating Brain Aging

Combating Brain Aging

The neurodegeneration in Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s diseases occurs as a result of inflammation in the nervous system coupled with the accumulation of harmful, pro-oxidant proteins that trigger even more inflammation and ultimately brain cell destruction. Constituents from rhodiola species such as salidroside display powerful antioxidant properties that prevent oxidative, pro-inflammatory effects as well as the formation of these proteins and the subsequent inflammatory cascade.39-43 Fewer brain cells die from oxidative stress.40,44

Nerve cells in the memory centers of the brain resist age-related damage and produce more beneficial neurotransmitters after treatment with rhodiola.45,46

Both short- and long-term memory enhancements have been demonstrated with rhodiola.47-49 Mental performance and acuity under experimentally induced adverse conditions, such as test-taking or sleep deprivation, are also significantly improved.7-9,11

Rhodiola species help aging humans fall asleep faster, longer, and with improved quality of rest.50,51 In one study of men with sleep disturbances, rhodiola increased the amount of time spent in healthful REM sleep, reduced total wakeful time during the night, and markedly increased the “efficiency” of sleep sessions.51 Greater blood oxygenation during sleep was also observed—a key longevity factor.


What Is An “Adaptogen?


The concept of “adaptogens” is thousands of years old and is an important feature of ancient medical systems in the mountains of Asia and in northern Europe.87 The modern term was coined in 1947 by a Russian scientist who defined an “adaptogen” as an agent that allows an organism to counteract and resist a variety of stressors.88 In 2001, noted nutrition scientist Gregory S. Kelly updated and strengthened criteria for defining an adaptogen, requiring that any one adaptogen:88
•Produce an increase in power of resistance against multiple stressors, including physical, chemical, or biological agents
•Normalize physiology, helping the body maintain youthful function, regardless of the cause of stress
•Normalize bodily functions beyond what is required to gain resistance to stress naturally.

Adaptogens exert a normalizing effect,87 allowing organisms to increase healthy functions that are impaired by stress, and to decrease unhealthy responses that are triggered by stress, without any risk of “overshooting” and creating an unbalanced response. Scientists use the term “homeostasis” to describe your body’s ability to maintain physiological function within certain parameters, including temperature, respiratory rate, and blood chemistry within tightly controlled limits. In mainstream language, then, adaptogens simply enhance the body’s ability to maintain homeostasis and fight age-inducing stress.5


Physical Performance

Physical activity and moderate exercise have multiple health benefits, but they also induce injury from oxidative stress, muscle cell damage, and inflammation. There is an important role, therefore, for adaptogens such as rhodiola in mitigating exercise-induced stress. Russian athletes have been known to use adaptogens to promote endurance and improve performance.

Physical Performance

Rhodiola increased antioxidant blood levels and minimized oxidative stress-induced muscle damage in trained athletes for up to 24 hours after strenuous activity.52,53 One study showed an increase in the time to exhaustion during exercise, with significant increases in oxygen delivery to muscle tissues during the workout as well.54

Rhodiola species have been used for centuries by villagers living high in the Himalayas to enhance their resistance to the effects of oxygen deprivation and to boost their endurance for strenuous tasks.55 Those effects prove equally beneficial at more moderate altitudes. During exercise, rhodiola helps people work out longer, increasing their oxygen uptake and decreasing muscle damage.53,54 Long-term supplementation boosts energy storage capacity and blood oxygen level prior to exercise, further enhancing exercise capacity and endurance.55

Rhodiola species protect internal organs from the low oxygen levels found at higher altitudes and that also occur during heart attacks and strokes.56,57 A 2011 study revealed something of even greater significance: rhodiola prevents a phenomenon known as vascular remodeling in lung tissue at high altitudes.58


Not All Rhodiola Is the Same


The authentic Rhodiola rosea species validated in clinical research is wildcrafted from the forests of the Altai Mountains of Siberia. The raw materials are harvested after a minimum of four years of growth, according to the World Health Organization Guidelines of Good Agricultural Practices. This practice of sustainable stewardship preserves the natural resources of rhodiola’s native habitat.

Some rhodiola extracts are standardized to salidroside content only. Salidroside content is not specific to the Rhodiola genus only and is not the only beneficial constituent of rhodiola. Highly beneficial Rhodiola rosea extracts contain a ratio of rosavin and salidroside phytochemicals similar to that which is found in the authentic plant itself.


Vascular remodeling describes the thickening of pulmonary blood vessels that contributes to increased blood pressure in the lungs, a condition known as pulmonary hypertension.59 Chronic exposure to high altitude is just one cause of this condition, which leads rapidly to congestive heart failure.60,61 More common causes of pulmonary hypertension include cardiovascular disease, obesity, and obstructive sleep apnea.59,62 Rhodiola’s ability to prevent vascular remodeling, then, may represent an important and sorely needed new approach to managing a major cause of death and disability in older adults.63

Rhodiola

Summary

Rhodiola is a cortisol suppressing herb that is becoming an increasingly popular dietary intervention in the United States.

It is one of a handful of known adaptogens—plant-based compounds known to support long, healthy life span in part by exerting system-wide protective and restorative effects.

Rhodiola has been shown to favorably modulate the stress response, restore vital organ function, and boost immunity. It is a low-cost nutrient that combats cognitive dysfunction, minimizing depression and anxiety, while enhancing muscle performance, endurance, and circulatory health.

If you have any questions on the scientific content of this article, please call a Life Extension® Health Advisor at
1-866-864-3027.

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53. Parisi A, Tranchita E, Duranti G, et al. Effects of chronic Rhodiola Rosea supplementation on sport performance and antioxidant capacity in trained male: preliminary results. J Sports Med Phys Fitness. 2010 Mar;50(1):57-63.

54. De Bock K, Eijnde BO, Ramaekers M, Hespel P. Acute Rhodiola rosea intake can improve endurance exercise performance. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab. 2004 Jun;14(3):298-307.

55. Zhang ZH, Feng SH, Hu GD, Cao ZK, Wang LY. Effect of Rhodiola kirilowii (Regel.) Maxim on preventing high altitude reactions. A comparison of cardiopulmonary function in villagers at various altitudes. Zhongguo Zhong Yao Za Zhi. 1989 Nov;14(11):687-90, 704.

56. Lee FT, Kuo TY, Liou SY, Chien CT. Chronic Rhodiola rosea extract supplementation enforces exhaustive swimming tolerance. Am J Chin Med. 2009;37(3):557-72.

57. Zhang Z, Wang L, Chen Q, et al. Electron microscopic observation of the effects of Rhodiola kirilowii (Regel.) Maxim. in preventing damage of the rat viscera by a hypoxic high altitude environment. Zhongguo Zhong Yao Za Zhi. 1990 Mar;15(3):177-81, 92.

58. Bai MK, Guo Y, Bian BD, et al. Integripetal rhodiola herb attenuates high altitude-induced pulmonary arterial remodeling and expression of vascular endothelial growth factor in rats. Sheng Li Xue Bao. 2011 Apr 25;63(2):143-48.

59. Kayikcioglu M. The etiopathogenesis of pulmonary hypertension: inflammation, vascular remodeling. Anadolu Kardiyol Derg. 2010 Aug;10 Suppl 1:5-8.

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62. Arbuzov AG, Krylatov AV, Maslov LN, Burkova VN, Naryzhnaya NV. Antihypoxic, cardioprotective, and antifibrillation effects of a combined adaptogenic plant preparation. Bull Exp Biol Med. 2006 Aug;142(2):212-5.

63. Stenmark KR, Rabinovitch M. Emerging therapies for the treatment of pulmonary hypertension. Pediatr Crit Care Med. 2010 Mar;11(2 Suppl):S85-90.

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65. Maslov LN, Lishmanov Iu B. Cardioprotective and antiarrhythmic properties of Rhodiolae roseae preparations. Eksp Klin Farmakol. 2007 Sep-Oct;70(5):59-67.

66. Zhang J, Liu A, Hou R, Jia X, Jiang W, Chen J. Salidroside protects cardiomyocyte against hypoxia-induced death: a HIF-1alpha-activated and VEGF-mediated pathway. Eur J Pharmacol. 2009 Apr 1;607(1-3):6-14.

67. Zhong H, Xin H, Wu LX, Zhu YZ. Salidroside attenuates apoptosis in ischemic cardiomyocytes: a mechanism through a mitochondria-dependent pathway. J Pharmacol Sci. 2010;114(4):399-408.

68. Wu T, Zhou H, Jin Z, et al. Cardioprotection of salidroside from ischemia/reperfusion injury by increasing N-acetylglucosamine linkage to cellular proteins. Eur J Pharmacol. 2009 Jun 24;613(1-3):93-9.

69. Lishmanov Iu B, Maslova LV, Maslov LN, Dan’shina EN. The anti-arrhythmia effect of Rhodiola rosea and its possible mechanism. Biull Eksp Biol Med. 1993 Aug;116(8):175-6.

70. Maimeskulova LA, Maslov LN, Lishmanov Iu B, Krasnov EA. The participation of the mu-, delta- and kappa-opioid receptors in the realization of the anti-arrhythmia effect of Rhodiola rosea. Eksp Klin Farmakol. 1997 Jan-Feb;60(1):38-9.

71. Maimeskulova LA, Maslov LN. The anti-arrhythmia action of an extract of Rhodiola rosea and of n-tyrosol in models of experimental arrhythmias. Eksp Klin Farmakol. 1998 Mar-Apr;61(2):37-40.

72. Maslov LN, Lishmanov YB, Arbuzov AG, et al. Antiarrhythmic activity of phytoadaptogens in short-term ischemia-reperfusion of the heart and postinfarction cardiosclerosis. Bull Exp Biol Med. 2009 Mar;147(3):331-4.

73. Arbuzov AG, Maslov LN, Burkova VN, Krylatov AV, Konkovskaia Iu N, Safronov SM. Phytoadaptogens-induced phenomenon similar to ischemic preconditioning. Ross Fiziol Zh Im I M Sechenova. 2009 Apr;95(4):398-404.

74. Li J, Fan WH, Ao H. Effect of rhodiola on expressions of Flt-1, KDR and Tie-2 in rats with ischemic myocardium. Zhongguo Zhong Xi Yi Jie He Za Zhi. 2005 May;25(5):445-8.

75. Gao XF, Shi HM, Sun T, Ao H. Effects of Radix et Rhizoma Rhodiolae Kirilowii on expressions of von Willebrand factor, hypoxia-inducible factor 1 and vascular endothelial growth factor in myocardium of rats with acute myocardial infarction. Zhong Xi Yi Jie He Xue Bao. 2009 May;7(5):434-40.

76. Iaremii IN, Grigor’eva NF. Hepatoprotective properties of liquid extract of Rhodiola rosea. Eksp Klin Farmakol. 2002 Nov-Dec;65(6):57-9.

77. Mishra KP, Padwad YS, Dutta A, et al. Aqueous extract of Rhodiola imbricata rhizome inhibits proliferation of an erythroleukemic cell line K-562 by inducing apoptosis and cell cycle arrest at G2/M phase. Immunobiology. 2008;213(2):125-31.

78. Tu Y, Roberts L, Shetty K, Schneider SS. Rhodiola crenulata induces death and inhibits growth of breast cancer cell lines. J Med Food. 2008 Sep;11(3):413-23.

79. Hu X, Lin S, Yu D, Qiu S, Zhang X, Mei R. A preliminary study: the anti-proliferation effect of salidroside on different human cancer cell lines. Cell Biol Toxicol. 2010 Dec;26(6):499-507.

80. Hu X, Zhang X, Qiu S, Yu D, Lin S. Salidroside induces cell-cycle arrest and apoptosis in human breast cancer cells. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2010 Jul 16;398(1):62-7.

81. Liu Z, Li X, Simoneau AR, Jafari M, Zi X. Rhodiola rosea and salidroside decrease the growth of bladder cancer cell lines via inhibition of the mTOR pathway and induction of autophagy. Mol Carcinog. 2011 Apr 22.

82. Skopinska-Rozewska E, Malinowski M, Wasiutynski A, et al. The influence of Rhodiola quadrifida 50% hydro-alcoholic extract and salidroside on tumor-induced angiogenesis in mice. Pol J Vet Sci. 2008;11(2):97-104.

83. Arora R, Chawla R, Sagar R, et al. Evaluation of radioprotective activities Rhodiola imbricata Edgew--a high altitude plant. Mol Cell Biochem. 2005 May;273(1-2):209-23.

84. Mishra KP, Ganju L, Chanda S, Karan D, Sawhney RC. Aqueous extract of Rhodiola imbricata rhizome stimulates Toll-like receptor 4, granzyme-B and Th1 cytokines in vitro. Immunobiology. 2009;214(1):27-31.

85. Li HX, Sze SC, Tong Y, Ng TB. Production of Th1- and Th2-dependent cytokines induced by the Chinese medicine herb, Rhodiola algida, on human peripheral blood monocytes. J Ethnopharmacol. 2009 Jun 22;123(2):257-66.

86. Kormosh N, Laktionov K, Antoshechkina M. Effect of a combination of extract from several plants on cell-mediated and humoral immunity of patients with advanced ovarian cancer. Phytother Res. 2006 May;20(5):424-5.

87. Rege NN, Thatte UM, Dahanukar SA. Adaptogenic properties of six rasayana herbs used in Ayurvedic medicine. Phytother Res. 1999 Jun;13(4):275-91.

88. Kelly GS. Rhodiola rosea: a possible plant adaptogen. Altern Med Rev. 2001 Jun;6(3):293-302.
Adaptogenic and central nervous system effects of single doses of 3% rosavin and 1% salidroside Rhodiola rosea L. extract in mice. - PubMed - NCBI
Abstract

Rhodiola rosea L., or 'golden root', is a popular plant in traditional medicine in Eastern Europe and Asia, with a reputation for improving depression, enhancing work performance, eliminating fatigue and treating symptoms of asthenia subsequent to intense physical and psychological stress. Due to these therapeutic properties, R. rosea is considered to be one of the most active adaptogenic drugs. To confirm and extend results obtained in the few preclinical and clinical studies available in English language journals, the purpose of the present study was to re-investigate the effects produced by a single oral administration of an R. rosea hydroalcohol extract (containing 3% rosavin and 1% salidroside) on the central nervous system in mice. The extract was tested on antidepressant, adaptogenic, anxiolytic, nociceptive and locomotor activities at doses of 10, 15 and 20 mg/kg, using predictive behavioural tests and animal models. The results show that this R. rosea extract significantly, but not dose-dependently, induced antidepressant-like, adaptogenic, anxiolytic-like and stimulating effects in mice. This study thus provides evidence of the efficacy of R. rosea extracts after a single administration, and confirms many preclinical and clinical studies indicating the adaptogenic and stimulating effects of such R. rosea extracts. Moreover, antidepressant-like and anxiolytic-like activities of R. rosea were shown in mice for the first time.

Rhodiola for Depression - ProgressiveHealth.com
What is Rhodiola?

Rhodiola (Rhodiola rosea) is a perennial herb native to the arctic regions especially the cold regions of China, Russia and other parts of Asia and Europe. It is very common in the wild and grows best in the high altitude areas of these cold regions. In these regions, rhodiola is also known by some other names such as arctic root, rose root, and golden root.

The medicinal benefits of rhodiola root are well-known in Chinese and Russian traditional medicine. It has a long history (dating back to thousands of years) in these cultures as a remedy for various stress-related conditions.

Rhodiola is considered an adaptogen because of its ability to relieve and prevent stress.

An adaptogen increases the body’s resistance (in non-specific ways) to stress triggered by either physiological or psychological factors. Many studies have found that rhodiola has the ability to improve work performance, insomnia, headache, fatigue and depression.

There are six distinct groups of phytochemicals in rhodiola. These groups of phytochemicals are listed in the table below.

Major Phytochemicals of Rhodiola
•Phenylpropanoids: rosavin, rosin, rosarin;
•Phenylethanol derivatives: salidroside (rhodioloside), tyrosol;
•Flavonoids: rodiolin, rodionin, rodiosin, acetylrodalgin, tricin;
•Monoterpenes: rosiridol, rosaridin;
•Triterpenes: daucosterol, beta-sitosterol;
•Phenolic acids: chlorogenic and hydroxycinnamic, gallic acids.



It was previously thought that the phenylethanol derivative, salidroside, was the only bioactive chemical responsible for rhodiola’s therapeutic effects. Recent studies have however established that salidroside and the phenylpropanoids (rosin, rosavin, rosarin and rosaridin) are the main bioactive pharmacological components of rhodiola.

Rosavins is the general term used to refer to all the phenylpropanoids compound present in rhodiola.

Before the discovery of the rosavins, other species of Rhodiola genus were used as herbal medicines in place of Rhodiola rosea. It was later found that only the Rhodiola rosea species contains the essential therapeutic compounds, rosavins.

Due to a better understanding of rhodiola’s phytochemicals, rhodiola root extracts are now standardized to contain at least 3% rosavins and 0.8 - 1% salidroside.

Rosavins and salidroside are known to naturally occur in the ratio of 3:1 in R. rosea root.



How does Rhodiola work?

The antidepressant effects of rhodiola are attributed to the rosavins, rosiridin, and salidroside. These phytochemicals act as monoamine oxidases inhibitors.

Monoamine Neurotransmitters

When you experience changes in mood, especially during depression, the concentrations and/or activities of monoamine neurotransmitters in the brain are reduced.

Neurotransmitters are responsible for transmitting nerve impulses between neurons. Hence, any reduction in their activities interferes with the extensive neuronal communication dependent on these brain chemicals.

Serotonin (also known as 5-HT), for example, is a monoamine neurotransmitter that is involved in the regulation of mood, appetite and sleep. This brain chemical is believed to play a major role in the feelings of well-being and happiness.

In response to low concentration and activity of serotonin in the brain, there will be a dip in mood. This is often what characterizes depression.

Dopamine, on the other hand, contributes to feelings of motivation, reward and mood as well as sleep and attention. Recent studies have shown high levels of dopamine activity in individuals who are outgoing or individuals of extroverted personalities.

Monoamine oxidases are the enzymes responsible for breaking down monoamine neurotransmitters. The major examples of monoamine neurotransmitters are dopamine, serotonin and norepinephrine.

Therefore, to relieve depression and maintain a balanced mental state, the neurotransmitters in the brain need to be restored to normal levels. This can be done either by increase their syntheses or by preventing their breakdown (monoamine oxidase inhibitors).

Rhodiola and Monoamine Neurotransmitters

Rhodiola root extract improves the activities of dopamine and serotonin in the brain by blocking the enzymatic breakdown of these brain chemicals by monoamine oxidases.

In addition, Rhodiola root extract promotes the transport of dopamine and serotonin precursors into the brain by increasing the permeability of the blood brain barrier to these precursors.

Some studies have shown that serotonin levels in the brain can be boosted by as much as 30% with the use of rhodiola root extract. This increase is due to the combination of the two mechanisms stated above.

Rhodiola extract is also known to reduce stress. As an adaptogen, it helps the body adapt to environmental, chemical and physical stressors.

The body responds to stress by releasing a hormone known as cortisol. The adaptogenic effects of rhodiola extract inhibits the release of this stress hormone. This anti-stress action of rhodiola reduces the chances of stress-induced depression.

Lastly, rhodiola extract has the ability to protect human cortical neurons from destruction by hydrogen peroxide radicals and glutamates. The salidroside component of rhodiola extract is believed to be responsible for this neuroprotective action.

Rhodiola as an Adaptogen

A 2002 study published in The Journal of the American Botanical Council, examined the anti-stress activity of Rhodiola rosea extract on the embryos of freshwater snails (Lymnaea stagnalis).

In this study, the larvae of freshwater snails (Lymnaea stagnalis) were exposed to some environmental stressors for a period of 20 hours to 3 days. The environmental stressors used are:
•physical stress (heat shock: 43 degrees Celsius for 4 minutes);
•oxidative stress (reactive oxygen species released by menadione, 600 micromolar, for 2 hours);
•heavy metal-induced stress (copper 150 micromolar or cadmium 20 micromolar for 1 hour).

The results of the study showed that R. rosea extract was able to provide resistance to these environmental stressors in the snails’ larvae.

The combination of the anti-stress, antidepressant and neuroprotective effects of rhodiola extract makes the herb an effective remedy for depression.

Directions for Use

Rhodiola extracts are derived from its root. The extracts are available in form of tablets, capsules and tinctures.

The suggested daily dose of standardized rhodiola extract is between 200 mg and 600 mg. The daily intake can be divided into 2 capsules or tablets. The first dose should be taken in the morning before breakfast and then later in the afternoon just before lunch.

Due to the stimulating action of rhodiola root extract, it can cause insomnia when taken at night.

For the body to gradually develop tolerance to the side effects of rhodiola extract, patients are advised to start from a low dose of 100 mg. Then the dose can gradually be increased with time to as much as 600 mg.

The reaction and response of the body to increased doses should be noted so help determine the appropriate dosage of the herb.

Side Effects and Contraindications

Rhodiola extract is generally considered safe. Unlike other stimulants like caffeine and nicotine, it is non-addictive.

Although mild side effects such as nausea, jitters, anxiety, agitation, hypersalivation, restlessness, and insomnia have been reported, they are thought to be as the result of combining rhodiola extract with other herbs or medications.

For example, consuming a caffeinated beverage such as coffee after taking rhodiola extract can result in over activity and anxiety. Other sources of stimulants such as nicotine gum, cigarettes and teas can also cause these effects when combined with rhodiola.

In addition, rhodiola extract should not be taken after or before a sugary meal (candy, cakes or sweets) to avoid jitters. A spike in the blood’s sugar coupled with the stimulant effect of rhodiola extract can produce this feeling.

Since rhodiola works by promoting the activities of serotonin in the brain, combining the herb with other antidepressants such as SSRIs (selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors) can lead to a fatal condition known as serotonin syndrome.

The safety of this herb has not been well demonstrated in pregnant and lactating women. It should therefore be avoided by these groups of patients until proper studies are available to confirm its safety.

Clinical Studies on Rhodiola and Depression

In Animal Models

A 2009 study published in the journal, Phytomedicine, investigated the effect of Rhodiola rosea extract on serotonin levels in the brains of depressed rats.

Seventy depressed rats were divided into seven groups with 10 rats in each group:
•normal control group
•untreated depressive rat model group
•negative control group
•positive control group
•low dosage Rhodiola rosea extract (1.5 g/kg) group
•medium dosage Rhodiola rosea extract (3 g/kg) group
•high dosage Rhodiola rosea extract (6 g/kg) group.

After a period of 3 weeks, the serotonin levels in the brains of the rats were examined by high performance liquid chromatography, a technique for detecting small levels of chemical compounds.

The results of the study showed that the serotonin levels of rats in the three groups given Rhodiola rosea extracts were restored to normal. This result concluded that Rhodiola rosea extract is capable of improving serotonin level in the brains of depressed rats.

A similar study published in the journal, Phytotherapy Research, in 2007 investigated the antidepressant effect of Rhodiola rosea extract in rats.

A hydroalcohol extract of Rhodiola rosea was given to rats at doses of 10, 15 and 20 mg/kg. The study made use of predictive behavioral tests and animal models to assess antidepressant activities in the rats.

The result of the study showed significant antidepressant activities in the behavioral test and animal models of depression. This suggests that hydroalcohol extract of Rhodiola rosea has significant antidepressant effects.

Human Studies

A 2002 study published in the journal, Herbalgram, examined the effectiveness of Rhodiola rosea extract in 150 depressed patients.

The participants in this study were given Rhodiola rose extracts for a period of one month.

The results of the study showed significant improvement and full remission of clinical manifestations of depression in two thirds of the patients. No adverse effects were recorded in the study.

Another 2007 study published in the Nordic Journal of Psychiatry examined the effectiveness of Rhodiola rosea extract in individuals diagnosed with mild to moderate depression. In this study, 89 volunteers between the ages of 18 and 70 participated. They were divided into three groups.

The first group of 29 participants were given 680 mg of Rhodiola rosea extract. Another group of 31 participants were given 340 mg of Rhodiola rosea extract while the remaining 29 participants were given placebo for a period of six weeks.

Severity of depression was assessed based on scores from the Beck Depression Inventory and Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HAMD) questionnaires.

After the 6-week duration of the study, significant improvements in depression, emotional instability and insomnia were demonstrated in the two groups given different doses of Rhodiola rosea extract compared to the placebo group.



Sources


Rhodiola rosea Rose Root PFAF Plant Database

Rhodiola Benefits & Information (Rhodiola Rosea)

http://cms.herbalgram.org/herbalgram/issue56/article2333.html


Rhodiola Rosea >> Side Effects

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The effects of Rhodiola rosea extract on 5-HT level, cell proliferation and quantity of neurons at cerebral hippocampus of depressive rats

www.naturaldispensary.com/downloads/A Research Review of Rhodiola Rosea.pdf

Adaptogenic and central nervous system effects of single doses of 3% rosavin and 1% salidroside Rhodiola rosea L. extract in mice - Perfumi - 2006 - Phytotherapy Research - Wiley Online Library



Rhodiola Rosea Uses, Benefits & Dosage - Drugs.com Herbal Database
Pharmacological and Clinical Studies of Salidroside.Rhodiola Rosea Extract.INCI Name Rhodiola Rosea Root Extract EINECS ELINCS No 306-819-2 CAS 97404-52-9 Salidroside 10338-51-9 Rosavin 84954 -92 -7 Siberian Rhodiola Rosea Root Extract,Rhodiola extra

I was introduce to benefits of the Rhodiola in 1998 by Zakir Ramazanov, Ph.D he was a professor of plant biochemistry and he was authored more than 130 scientific articles and patents in the field of biotechnology, plant biochemistry and molecular biology. He served as a Senior Scientist at the Russian Academy of Science. His achievements included his position as Scientific Coordinator of Algal Biotechnology and his work in space biology and cultivation of photosynthetic organisms in space station. He helped me to reformulate the original Bulgarian Energix. Unfortunately he died from a asthma attack in 2006, I was talking with him on the phone a few hours before he died. He was also involved in the in the Humanolife project with Dr.Jim Wright , Dr.Serrano and Dr. Karlis Ullis. Any way he told me some new information on the Rhodiola which he was planing to publish it in 2007, unfortunately the publication never happened.
 

ironceltic12

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I will say since incorporating this into my daily regimen, I certainly noticed a major difference in terms of feeling good, dealing with stress, and energy. I noticed this most when I decided to stop using it and realized how much it helped
 

mkchll

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Awesome post! Reading now. have to say this stuff helps improve mood greatly. I just started Rhodiola this week in the form of the rigs tabs along with theanine and after two days On them i was driving home from work and realized how good I felt, like a weight lifted off my shoulders or something, almost a drug like effect but more subtle or natural.

Looking forward to more discussion on this stuff. I'm at the beginning stages of learning and experimenting with these products.
 

emeric delczeg

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Awesome post! Reading now. have to say this stuff helps improve mood greatly. I just started Rhodiola this week in the form of the rigs tabs along with theanine and after two days On them i was driving home from work and realized how good I felt, like a weight lifted off my shoulders or something, almost a drug like effect but more subtle or natural.

Looking forward to more discussion on this stuff. I'm at the beginning stages of learning and experimenting with these products.

Dr. Zakir was on something big before he died, I still have some notes from him.
 

warlock

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LK3,

Which of the 2 rhodiolas on your list do you think is best?

Rhodiola salidroside 3%

Rhodiola rosavin 3%
 

warlock

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Dr. Zakir was on something big before he died, I still have some notes from him.


Emeric,

I have tried your product "energix" and I really like it. I know you have been talking about rhodiola for quite some time. What version do you recommend and at what dose?

Thank you
 

Knight9

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I will say since incorporating this into my daily regimen, I certainly noticed a major difference in terms of feeling good, dealing with stress, and energy. I noticed this most when I decided to stop using it and realized how much it helped
Dosing?
Awesome post! Reading now. have to say this stuff helps improve mood greatly. I just started Rhodiola this week in the form of the rigs tabs along with theanine and after two days On them i was driving home from work and realized how good I felt, like a weight lifted off my shoulders or something, almost a drug like effect but more subtle or natural.

Looking forward to more discussion on this stuff. I'm at the beginning stages of learning and experimenting with these products.
Guys, share your dosing.
Dr. Zakir was on something big before he died, I still have some notes from him.
Can you post the notes?
 

crunchy

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Defiantly interested . I have to ask will this show a false positive on drug tests?
 

Knight9

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My plan was going to be to take 1 x 500mg capsule daily of Jarrow Rhodiola Rosea which is sitting right in front of me. it's 5% rosavins from Russian Root.

I don't think I have read it in this thread yet...but Rhodiola should likely be cycled.
 

mkchll

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Are the dosagess below supposed to be in mg ? 6 grams per kg seems like a huge dose.






A 2009 study published in the journal, Phytomedicine, investigated the effect of Rhodiola rosea extract on serotonin levels in the brains of depressed rats.

Seventy depressed rats were divided into seven groups with 10 rats in each group:
•normal control group
•untreated depressive rat model group
•negative control group
•positive control group
•low dosage Rhodiola rosea extract (1.5 g/kg) group
•medium dosage Rhodiola rosea extract (3 g/kg) group
•high dosage Rhodiola rosea extract (6 g/kg) group.

After a period of 3 weeks, the serotonin levels in the brains of the rats were examined by high performance liquid chromatography, a technique for detecting small levels of chemical compounds.
 

emeric delczeg

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LK3,

Which of the 2 rhodiolas on your list do you think is best?

Rhodiola salidroside 3%

Rhodiola rosavin 3%

The most active chemical in the plant is the rosavin, and only Rhodiola rosea contains rosavin. The Russian scientists have indemnified nearly 200 specie.
 

warlock

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The most active chemical in the plant is the rosavin, and only Rhodiola rosea contains rosavin. The Russian scientists have indemnified nearly 200 specie.

Thank you Emeric. This means we should buy the Rhodiola rosavin 3% over the Rhodiola salidroside 3%, correct?
 

emeric delczeg

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My plan was going to be to take 1 x 500mg capsule daily of Jarrow Rhodiola Rosea which is sitting right in front of me. it's 5% rosavins from Russian Root.

I don't think I have read it in this thread yet...but Rhodiola should likely be cycled.

No, you don`t need to cycle. Don`t take 500mg, large doses are used in psychiatric treatment 200mg twice daily. It can increasing arterial pressure and is contraindicated if the person is experiencing nervous excitability or hypertensive crisis. Take 100mg to 150mg only once or twice per day.
 

emeric delczeg

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Thank you Emeric. This means we should buy the Rhodiola rosavin 3% over the Rhodiola salidroside 3%, correct?

Look for a supplement to contain a 3 to 1 ratio of rosavins to salidrosides because this is very close to the natural ratio. It is also the ratio most used in rhodiola rosea research. Thus, the most common standardized concentration of rosavins and salidroside is 3% rosavins and around 1% salidrosides. I have seen some over-hyped supplements promoting a higher concentration of rosavins, but no research or evidence supports higher dosage concentrations.
 

LK3

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LK3,

Which of the 2 rhodiolas on your list do you think is best?

Rhodiola salidroside 3%

Rhodiola rosavin 3%

I have used both and can not say with 100% certainty that I can tell a difference in them.

I forget which one im using now... lol

both have both compounds but as you see the focus is on one or the other in standardized extract, which if you go by much of the information available is relevant.

I think ideally one wants to use both, as you can see in the information a certain ration seems to be the "ideal" I have yet to figure that out.

generally I have a bag of both and take one one time, one another and or mix.

both are rhodiola rosea.
 

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