Schisandra to Boost Mood and Relieve Anxiety

Schisandra Berries

Many times we are faced with the dilemma of taking a supplement that can enhance our mood but may bring along anxiety and other unwanted side effects. So obviously the rational decision to make is to find a supplement that does not come burdened with such adverse effects or better a supplement that relieves anxiety as well as boosts your mood. This is where the schisandra berry comes in, a natural remedy for many common ailments throughout history, anxiety among them. So, where does this mysterious fruit that is also referred to as the five flavor berry come from, and what exactly is at work here to create such an effect?mood boosters

The schisandra berry grows on the schisandra chinensis vine which is mainly found in eastern Asia. The bioactive components can be found throughout the plant but are most concentrated in the berries; therefore they are what we will focus on in this analysis of the fruit. No, nobody expects you to fly half way around the world (depending on where you are located!) to obtain the schisandra berry just as nobody expects you to import such a delicate fruit from some foreign country. Rest assured, the extract of this berry is what we are after and can be found fairly easily in most regions of the world.

Schisandra Benefits

Research surrounding schisandra is fairly conclusive in the fact that it is a powerful anti-anxiety supplement in addition to its ability to boost ones mood through lowering stress levels and enhancing performance in many facets of life. The Institute of Traditional Chinese Medicine & Natural Products concluded through animal research that regular ingestion of the schisandra extract lead to a reversal in stress-related anxiety as well as an increase in cognitive function in subjects.  The schisandra berry is a classic example of a fruit that demonstrates adaptogenic activity, which means it is completely safe, non-toxic and specifically reduces both mental and physical stress. This is the good stuff, just what we are looking for in a natural remedy to one of life’s age old problems. It doesn’t stop there though; the schisandra berry has been shown to improve coordination, concentration, and even endurance. Sometimes when we begin to break down the science behind ancient Chinese culture and herb usage we reach the point where the benefits are just be too good to be true, but they are true and there is a reason these powerful supplements have been used for thousands of years.

The focus of this analysis has been on the anti-anxiety and mood boosting effects surrounding the schisandra berry but the benefits do not stop there. While some may be so bold as to try the schisandra berry in its raw form others should opt to explore other options when it comes to supplementing the super fruit. Extract in powder form is the most common and easily accessible form and is what I recommend for any that may be interested in adding schisandra to your stack. As always pay attention to your body’s individual response and always read the packaging information on your particular supplement for more information on dosing.

Sources:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20374974

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21757327

Schisandra Chinensis to Boost Mood

We have all experienced days that we felt irritable, angry, or sad. If these feelings are allowed to persist and build, our mental and physical health could suffer as a result. Depression, along with numerous other mood disorders, affects millions of Americans each year. If we had the ability to improve our state of mind and subsequently improve our mood, we could live more productive and fulfilling lives. While many things can contribute to our mental health, such as diet, proper exercise, and positive personal relationships, there are different supplements which can help us to achieve and retain balanced moods. One such supplement, Schisandra Chinensis, offers numerous benefits to help bring us peace of mind and body.schisandra to boost mood

What is Schisandra Chinensis?

First studied as a natural healer possessing adaptogenic properties [3], the supplement Schisandra Chinensis [1] is derived from a vine native to far east Russia and Northern China. Originally integrated into traditional Chinese culture, the berries are dried and used in various remedies including being used to create a strong tea. Traditional dictated [1,2] that Schisandra Chinensis was effective in fortifying the kidney, calm feelings of anxiety, and, when consumed as tea, could quench seemingly insatiable thirst.

How can Schisandra Chinensis help?

When we experience prolonged periods of stress, depression and mood swings can take control of our daily lives, relationships, and livelihood. With a supplement of Schisandra Chinensis, our body has an increased ability to stabilize and retain positive moods. The supplement [2,3] performs these mood enhancing functions by drastically decreasing acetylcholinesterase, the breakdown of the beneficial compound acetylcholine. When the body has adequate amounts of acetylcholine, the communication between neurotransmitters in the central nervous system is greatly improved. Schisandra Chinensis enables these communication pathways to correctly function as to enable our body and mind to perform to the best of their ability. When these synapses are not firing in a productive way, our moods and the body’s level of stress rises.

One study [2] reported that when subject received an oral dose of the supplement, Schisandra Chinensis was able to address the rises in cortisol and other various catecholamines. Additionally, the levels of adrenaline and serotonin brought on by the increase of stress were also noted to be better moderated and controlled. Stress not only contributes to our moods, but also to the overall condition of our body. In a recent study [2] rats battling anxiety displayed a higher risk of tumor growth and formation, but when the study introduced the rats to the supplement, the natural health markers found in non-cancerous rats began to reappear.

Sources:

1. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schisandra_chinensis#Uses

2. http://examine.com/supplements/Schizandra+Chinensis/

3. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18515024