The use of rhodolia as a traditional medicine spans millennia, and has a strong documented history in Russia, Sweden, and Greece among other countries. The plant grows in higher elevations, and goes by numerous names, but is known scientifically as Rhodiola rosea. Western medical research in human subjects has been limited to date, but preliminary investigations show a strong potential for Rhodiola as a medicine to fight depression, general anxiety disorders, and fatigue. The plant is also believed to have cancer-fighting properties, and to enhance mental and physical performance – how’s that for a miracle plant?
Rhodiola is an adaptogenic herb whose characteristics are still being examined. In 2008, a study on fruit flies demonstrated Rhodiola’s potential as an anti-aging drug – flies that ate a diet rich in Rhodiola lived an average of 10% longer! A study on rabbits and mice in China in 1992 reported that Rhodiola increased animal life span and vitality, as well. Their findings also demonstrated an immune-boosting capacity for the plant extract. As if that wasn’t enough, Rhodiola is also an effective fat-fighter, can improve memory and concentration, battles fatigue, and can strengthen immune function. Rhodiola even helps protect you from cardiovascular disease! Recently, a wave of books have been published that detail the benefits and ethnopharmocological history of Rhodiola’s use, and even its appearance in Greek mythology as a miracle plant!
While the potential benefits of Rhodiola are numerous, it should be taken with care. Due to the nature of some of its components, it may produce potentially life-threatening complications if consumed with prescription antidepressants – Rhodiola is considered an MAO inhibitor, so if you are currently taking an MAO inhibitor, it may be dangerous to take Rhodiola. Additionally, the potential for negative drug interactions exists with other medicines. Dizziness and dry mouth are commonly reported side effects.
The amazing benefits of Rhodiola, as described in this section, are as follows:
- Stress reliever
- Improves mental performance
- Improves memory
- Improves physical performance
- Boosts the immune system
- Protects against cardiovascular disease
- Fights fat build-up
- Cancer fighter
- Treats fatigue
- Treats generalized anxiety disorders
- May extend lifespan
If you are thinking about taking a Rhodiola supplement,
discuss the potential for negative drug interactions with your doctor(s) first. This supplement is powerful as an anti-oxidant, stress-reliever, and potential cancer-fighter, and results appear within the first week of use! Its strength is the reason for its danger, however. Take Rhodiola with caution. Since this herbal medicine is still being studied, exact dosage recommendations are unavailable.