You may have seen this word popping up lately - showing up in health news, ingredient lists or being discussed on blogs. You may have wondered, what the heck is it, how do you even pronounce it and why are people talking about it?
We pronounce it shi'zan'dra, but we've heard ski'zan'dra too. Schizandra is a red berry that grows on a climbing vine native to China and parts of Russia. It has been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine for over 2000 years and is known for its distinct flavour profile ("Wu-Wei-Zei" or Five Flavoured Berry) of sweet, salty, bitter, sour and pungent (spicy) and has just recently started piquing interest of people in North America. Schizandra is worthy of the hype.
Schizandra has been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine to boost the immune system, combat insomnia and beautify the skin. What’s better than that? Well, here's our list of the top 5 reasons to incorporate Schizandra into your diet.
1. Schizandra is an adaptogen. Adaptogens are botanical ingredients considered to help the mind and body adapt to stress. This amazing little berry helps balance hormones, naturally providing our body with an increased ability to resist stress, anxiety and emotional trauma. Schizandra normalizes the imbalances caused by stress and adapts to the specific needs of the body, thereby reducing damage.
2. Schizandra can improve physical performance. This potent berry can increase the body’s work capacity by increasing energy, enhancing endurance, and improving the body's ability to fight fatigue. What’s also very important is that Schizandra is an amazing aid to a quicker recovery time. It can improve your blood flow and increase the nitric oxide in the blood as well as fight inflammation by promoting the body’s ability to increase antioxidant levels.
3. Schizandra can enhance cognitive function. Several human clinical studies have shown that Schizandra naturally improves concentration, memory, coordination and accuracy and helps prevent mental fatigue. Stay sharp by adding Schizandra to your diet.
4. Schizandra is known traditionally to protect the liver. Schizandra contains lignin, an integral part of the cell walls of plants. Lignins are anti-inflammatory and help protect the liver. Lignins activate enzymes in your liver cells that produce antioxidants and also improve the liver's ability to remove waste and harmful toxins from the body.
5. Schizandra promotes a strong libido. Research shows that schizandra is beneficial for fertility and hormonal health, helping promote a strong libido, preventing sexual dysfunction and positively affecting the reproductive organs, including the uterus.
What a berry! Are you convinced? Remember, schizandra is a medicinal berry with multiple healing properties and anyone who wants to improve or maintain their health and well-being should be looking at this powerful adaptogen (stress-buster) and antioxidant booster to add to their daily routine.
Now you might be asking why we're talking about Schizandra when it's not a tea! We've been researching and experiencing the health benefits of matcha tea for several years and through this experience, our eyes have really opened to the world of superfoods. We started mixing superfood powders that we knew to have specific benefits, with our matcha. Not too long after, we started thinking that people might be interested in starting out with superfood powders, but might not have time to research how much, which kinds, for what functions and in what proportions. So, we did the math and weighing and already have five matcha-based superfood blends! Schizandra is in our Matcha Spirit blend, which is a powerful adaptogenic blend that fights stress and gives a sustained clean energy boost. More on that later..
We'll never stop drinking matcha straight, it just tastes way too good. What about you? Do you have superfoods in your diet right now? Let us know in the comments below.