As you know, one of the main areas of focus at my wellness clinic is non-invasive, natural therapies for anti-aging.
That’s why when patients come to me with what they call the “symptoms of old age,” I feel compelled to set them on the right course.
And I can tell you that the literally thousands of patients I’ve seen with these “symptoms” over the years have left my clinic – some even as skeptics – and returned renewed and rejuvenated.
But, I confess, the cure was easy. Because usually their problems were not “symptoms” at all.
They were the side-effects of our pill-pushing mainstream medical establishment!
If the goal in prescribing this mountain of high-priced medication is to make sure you don’t miss any of the great experiences your golden years have in store – mainstream medicine has failed you.
You want to live life to the fullest for as long as you can. Cruise around the world. Dance at family gatherings. Go to the head of the class at adult-ed lectures. Write the Great American Novel – or at least a fun blog – to name just a few.
That’s why when patients come to my clinic, one of the first things I ask about is their stress levels. Stress, anxiety and depression can significantly shorten your lifespan.
Mainstream doctors will push Big Pharma’s relaxants, benzodiazepines and antidepressants at you – but there is a price, and I’m not just talking about the financial cost.
None of these drugs will cure the problem – they merely mask it. And all come with horrible side-effects and interfere with body’s natural chemicals.
Ironically, the very drugs that are supposed to calm you also cause headaches, nausea, aches, pains, weight-gain, sexual dysfunction and suicidal thoughts.
But with the natural remedies I recommend, you will stop losing precious moments to stress, anxiety and depression, and even add years to your life.
And you certainly won’t be turned into a groggy, confused zombie, shambling through your day.
The natural remedies I recommend not only ease pain, but they boost your physical and mental stamina. They will also lift your spirits and soothe your nerves. They can even make your mind sharper, improving your ability to concentrate, learn and remember.
One of the most powerful natural remedies I recommend at my anti-aging clinic is rhodiola rosea1 – also known as rose root, golden root, Aaron’s rod, king’s crown, lignum rhodium and orpin rose.
Rhodiola is an adaptogen. These are plants, roots and herbs that have been co-opted from ancient shamans.
I’ve been studying adaptogens for a long time at my clinic, and my own observation of my patients’ experience is supported by scientific research.2,3,4,5,6, And my observation of rhodiola is that it works.
In Asia and Europe, healers have used rhodiola for thousands of years to relieve nausea and depression, sharpen concentration and reduce fatigue. Oriental healers use it to treat altitude sickness.
I’ve also observed how rhodiola naturally energized my patients and gave their immune systems a real kick-start.
In just a few months, they are visibly younger and stronger. And they tell me they feel that way, too. They also say they get fewer infections and catch fewer colds and flues.
In one study, researchers found that one of the active ingredients in rhodiola – salidroside – stimulates the creation of T-cells, vital players in our immune system.
Doses of salidroside actually rejuvenated immune systems in aging rats, making them more resistant to infection and disease.7
In another study, scientists at the University of California at Irvine fed rhodiola to fruit flies. And those flies lived 24 percent longer than the rest of their swarm.
For the flies, that was just three extra days. But if they were humans, that would be like extending the life of the average American from 85 to 105.8,9,10
Of course, humans and fruit flies are very different species. But there is an important connection – fruit flies and humans actually share 75 percent of their disease genes. Many of the biochemical chain reactions in fruit flies – biologists call them “molecular pathways” – are identical to what happens in your own cells.
Even so, if my patients live to see 105 candles on their birthday cakes, I want them to be mentally sharp, physically active and glad to be alive.
And that’s why I recommend rhodiola.
After being fed this humble plant extract, the fruit flies remained energetic and active throughout their lives.
So rhodiola didn’t just help young flies live longer, it also gave older flies more vim and vigor.
And these are exactly the results I see with my patients who take rhodiola.
This is because rhodiola also works to keep your telomeres healthy and elongated. Telomeres are the protective caps at the ends of our chromosomes and they act as a kind of biological clock that controls the age of our cells.
When our cells duplicate, their telomeres get shorter. It’s like a Xerox that degrades with each copy. The shorter the telomeres, the more prone you are chronic diseases and reduced life expectancy.
Studies show that stress, anxiety and depression shorten telomeres.11,12,13,14,15
That’s another reason I recommend rhodiola to my patients. The herb’s two major active ingredients – salidroside and rosavins – team up to supercharge your brain and your nervous system. With their help, you’ll become strong enough, physically, mentally and emotionally, to take on life’s challenges.16,17,18
Rhodiola capsules are available in most health food stores and online.
But make sure the pills contain enough of the plant’s active ingredients, rosavins and salidroside. You want capsules with 0.8 percent to one percent salidroside and two to three percent rosavin.
For the first week, take 100 milligrams once a day.
The second week, you can up the daily dosage to 200 milligrams.
Over the next two weeks, you can keep increasing it by 100 milligrams. But don’t go over 400 milligrams a day.
To Your Good Health,
Al Sears, MD
1. Kelly, G.S., “Rhodiola Rosea: A Possible Plant Adaptogen.” Altern Med Rev. 2001 Jun;6(3):293-302.
2. Darbinyan V, et al. “Clinical trial of Rhodiola rosea L. extract in the treatment of mild to moderate depression”. Nord J Psychiatry. 2007, 61 (5): 343–8.
3. Shevtsov VA, et al. “A Randomized Trial of Two Different Doses of Rhodiola rosea Extract Versus Placebo and Control of Capacity for Mental Work”. Phytomedicine. March 2003. 10 (2–3): 95–105.
4. Darbinyan V, et al. “Rhodiola rosea in Stress Induced Fatigue – A Double Blind Cross-Over Study of a Standardized Extract With a Repeated Low-Dose Regimen on the Mental Performance of Healthy Physicians During Night Duty.” Phytomedicine. October 2000. 7 (5): 365–71.
5. Dwyer AV, et al. “Herbal Medicines, Other Than St. John’s Wort, in the Treatment of Depression: A Systematic Review.” March 2001. Altern Med Rev 16 (1): 40–9.
6. Ha Z, et al. “The Effect of Rhodiola and Acetazolamide on the Sleep Architecture and Blood Oxygen Saturation in Men Living at High Altitude”. Zhonghua Jie He He Hu Xi Za Zhi (in Chinese) 25 (9): 527–30. PMID 12423559.
7. Lu, L., et al. “Rejuvenating activity of salidroside (SDS): Dietary intake of SDS enhances the immune response of aged rats.” Age (Dordr). 2013 Jun;35(3):637-46.
8. Jafari, M. “Rhodiola: A Promising Anti-Aging Chinese Herb.” Rejuvenation Res. 2007 Dec;10(4):587-602.
9. University of California at Irvine. Susan Samueli Center for Integrative Medicine. “Siberian Herb Could Extend Lives, UCI researchers say.” irvine.edu. Published on December 5, 2007. Downloaded Jan. 15, 2015.
10. University of California at Irvine. “Rhodiola Rosea Found To Increase Lifespan in Fruit Flies.
uci.edu. Published on December 5, 2007. Retrieved on January 15, 2015.
11. Karabatsiakis, A., et al. “Telomere Shortening in Leukocyte Subpopulations in Depression.” BMC Psychiatry. 2014 Jul 5;14:192.
12. Szebeni, A, et al. “Shortened Telomere Length in White Matter Oligodendrocytes in Major Depression: Potential Role of Oxidative Stress.” Int J Neuropsychopharmacol. 2014 Oct;17(10):1579-89.
13. Shalev I., et al. Stress and Telomere Biology: A Lifespan Perspective.” Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2013 Sep;38(9):1835-42.
14. Starkweather A.R., et al. “An integrative review of factors associated with telomere length
and implications for biobehavioral research.” Nurs Res. 2014 Jan-Feb;63(1):36-50.
15. Drury S.S., et al. “The association of telomere length with family violence and disruption.” Pediatrics. 2014 Jul;134(1):e128-37.
16. Petkov, V.D., et al. “Effects of alcohol aqueous extract from Rhodiola rosea L. roots on learning and memory.” Acta Physiol Pharmacol Bulg. 1986; 12: 3-6.
17. Linh, P.T., et al. “Quantitative determination of salidroside and tyrosol from the underground part of Rhodiola rosea by high-performance liquid-chromotography.” Arch Farm Res. 2000; 23: 349-352.
18. Stancheva, S.L., et al. “Effect of the extract of Rhodiola rosea L. on the content of the brain biogenic monomines.” Med Physiol. 1987; 40: 85-87.