Magazine article Vegetarian Times

Supplement Smarts

Magazine article Vegetarian Times

Supplement Smarts

Article excerpt

RHODIOLA

Grown in northern climates, the herb Rhodiola rosea has long been touted by Scandinavians for enhancing endurance, brainpower, and mood; the former Soviet Union, seeking to improve the performance of its athletes and soldiers, kept rhodiola research under high security. Still, enough studies have been translated-and declassified-to indicate the herb's potential, notes Patricia Gerbarg, MD, co-author of The Rhodiola Revolution. "I've now seen extensive clinical use of rhodiola," she says. "It's good for age-associated memory decline, and for improving energy in patients with any number of ailments, and mood in those with mild to moderate depression."

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"Rhodiola protects cell components from free radicals and toxins and enhances the ability of cells to repair and recover," says Gerbarg. "I recommend starting it by age 40 to slow oxidative damage." The herb likely works via two key constituents, rosavins and salidroside; supplements are standardized to an optimal 3 percent and 1 percent, respectively. …

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