The term anti-aging seems to be everywhere.
Unfortunately, it sends the message that aging is a bad thing. And, it scares the bejezus out of folks.
In ancient and indigenous cultures, growing older meant that you were accumulating life experiences and gaining wisdom. Elders were revered for their knowledge and they were expected to pass down their teachings to the younger generations.
It was also the duty of the more youthful members of the family, and the community, to care for the elders as they aged. This in turn, helped the elders feel loved, supported and valued.
That’s not necessarily the case in modern times.
It’s the exact opposite, actually. Today, youth is revered mostly for beauty and strength, but aging is regarded as distasteful or shameful (anti-aging).
This, in turn, makes the elders feel worthless, discarded and useless.
It’s no wonder that Alzheimer’s and dementia are on the rise. Why would the elders need to retain their knowledge if it’s not worth anything to anyone?
But, I digress. That is a much deeper conversation about the degeneration of our human condition.
In many cultures a wide variety of foods and herbs were given to improve the aging process, and promote vitality and longevity.
I’m going to suggest that instead of going against aging (as in anti-aging), we step into promoting longevity by using traditional restorative herbs to enhance the continued functioning our organs, bodily systems, and mind.
Below are three popular herbs that have been used for centuries to help us age more healthfully and happily.
- Ashwaganda (Withania somnifera) – this classic herb has been used in India and Africa for thousands of years to improve sleep, decrease anxiety, alleviate fatigue, improve energy, support fertility, enhance memory and promote longevity.
- Siberian Ginseng (Eleutherococus senticosus) – used in China for several thousands years, this herb is a powerful adaptogen and immune tonic. Eleuthero normalizes adrenal activity, reduces stress, heightens mental alertness, improves concentration, and boosts the transmission of nerve impulses in the brain.
- He Shou Wu – Fo ti (Polygonum multiflorum) – this herb is legendary in traditional Chinese medicine. “Scientific studies have shown He Shou Wu stimulates the body to produce longevity promoting substances including superoxide dismutase, which is the most powerful antioxidant in the human body; and it has been credited with reversing many diseases, DNA protection and repair, and extending lifespan.”
Have you tried any of the above restorative herbs? If you want to age more healthfully, I would suggest giving them a try. They’ve been around for thousands of years, and are now making a resurgence for a reason; to help us live a long healthy life so we can pass our knowledge onto future generations.
Here’s a delicious recipe to help you incorporate these herbs into your diet so you can continue sharing your wisdom with the whipper snappers: Restorative Herb Balls
If you want more delicious recipes for longevity and healthy aging, meet me in the kitchen for a fun and engaging online cooking class – Cooking for Healthy Aging.
 Alchemy of Herbs, by Rosalee De La Foret, 2017 Hay House, pgs. 299-301
 Healing Lyme, Stephen Harrod Buhner, 2005 Raven Press, pgs. 135-136
Andrea Beaman is a internationally renowned Holistic Health Coach, Natural Foods Chef, Speaker and Herbalist. Named one of the top 100 Most Influential Health and Fitness Experts, she is also a recipient of the Natural Gourmet Institute’s Award for Excellence in Health-Supportive Education and a Health Leadership award from The Institute for Integrative Nutrition. Since 1999, Andrea has been teaching individuals and health practitioners how to harness the body’s own preventative and healing powers using food, herbal remedies and alternative medicine.