Adaptogens primarily affect homeostasis. This term refers to the balance of physiological body functions such as the regulation of circulation, body temperature, the pH value of the blood, etc
Chronic stress disrupts this balance of functions. The adaptogens support and strengthen homeostasis and increase the body's resistance to stress factors. They have an “intuitive intelligence”, function in a non-specific manner and ensure increased resistance to stress

Here are some of the main mechanisms by which adaptogens may exert their effects:

Hormonal Regulation: Adaptogens can act on the endocrine system (hormone system) to modulate the release of stress hormones such as cortisol. This can help reduce symptoms of chronic stress such as fatigue, difficulty sleeping, and irritability.

Stress reaction and HPA axis: The hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenocortical axis (HPA axis), which is involved in the stress reaction, releases too many hormones and thereby throws the body out of balance. Adaptogens are designed to help regulate this axis and reduce excessive activation of the adrenal glands, rebalancing physical and mental well-being.

Cellular Energy Production: Some adaptogens are associated with an increase in cellular energy production, which increases physical and mental endurance. It looks like they can improve mitochondrial function and thus increase the energy supply to the cells.

Immune modulation: Adaptogens can influence the immune system by regulating the activity of immune cells and controlling the production of inflammatory substances. This can help strengthen the immune system while preventing an excessive immune response.

Neuroprotection: Some studies have shown that adaptogens have neuroprotective properties that protect the brain from oxidative stress and other harmful influences and have an effect on cognitive functions in fatigue as well as in asthenic and depressive states. This could help promote mental clarity and reduce the risk of neurodegenerative diseases.

Mood regulation: There is evidence that adaptogens act on neurotransmitters such as serotonin, dopamine and GABA, which play a role in mood regulation. Serotonin affects mood, sleep, appetite, social interactions and pain perception. It regulates emotional well-being and is involved in the prevention of depression and anxiety disorders. A balanced dopamine level is crucial for mental health and cognitive function. Dysregulation can lead to various disorders, including depression and Parkinson's disease. As a type of natural sedative, GABA plays a crucial role in reducing anxiety, stress and excessive arousal. A balanced GABA system promotes emotional balance, improves sleep and helps manage stress. By balancing these neurotransmitters, adaptogens could help improve emotional health.

The exact mechanisms of action of adaptogens depending on the specific plant or compound can vary. Research on this topic is still ongoing and many aspects are not yet fully understood. Anyone wishing to use adaptogens to support their health should do so in consultation with a qualified doctor or health professional.