what are adaptogens?

What Are Adaptogens?

curious about adaptogens? here's what you need to know about our favorites.

Even if you’re not yet familiar with adaptogens or their powerful benefits, it’s likely you’ve at least spotted the word on a coffee shop menu or drink label. Adaptogens are naturally occurring, non-toxic plants and fungi from all over the world. Their claim to fame? Adaptogens, well, adapt to counteract the effects of stress and fatigue on the body by specifically supporting your adrenals, the glands that manage your hormonal response to anxiety. (Whoever named adaptogens did a great job.) Many of these plants and fungi are so adept at protecting against stress because they themselves have adapted to survive in extreme conditions, from mountaintops to arid deserts. While adaptogens have been utilized for thousands of years, only recently has the Western world begun to acknowledge their powerful benefits. From coffee shops to juice bars to lifestyle blogs, people are recognizing how these amazing plants can help the body energize, balance the mind, and increase focus. 

Here at Picnik, we’ve used these power-plants ever since the first days of our coffee trailer in Austin, Texas. We love that adaptogens are finally getting their time in the spotlight! Especially when ingested with coffee or tea, they can improve focus, minimize fatigue, and support overall wellness of the brain and body. Our founder, Naomi Seifter, spent years developing a proprietary blend of adaptogenic mushrooms, herbs, and amino acids that work together to help bring your body and mind to blissful homeostasis. We use this exclusive 1500 mg blend of adaptogens and amino acids in our Vanilla Oatmilk Adaptogen Creamer, specially formulated to calm jitters and invigorate the mind in order to help you focus and excel. Here are some of the functional ingredients that make up the Picnik Adaptogen Blend:

Eleuthero adaptogen


Feeling a mid-day slump after lunch? Us too. We reach for eleuthero root, an incredible adaptogenic plant with similar stimulating properties as ginseng. The first plant ever to be officially named an "adaptogen" in 1962, eleuthero is traditionally used to support stamina, fight fatigue, and support endurance-related athletic performance. In traditional Chinese medicine, eleuthero root has been used for thousands of years to invigorate chi and balances vital energy. 

Ashwagandha adaptogen


Say that 10 times fast! Ashwagandha is one of the most powerful and oft-utilized herbs in the Ayurvedic healing lineup– an ancient plant powerhouse with a wide range of medicinal benefits. Ashwagandha is an evergreen shrub found in India, Africa and parts of the Middle East, the roots of which are harvested and ground for calming and nourishing stress support. This plant can help normalize cortisol levels, thus reducing stress response and the inflammation that often comes with it.

Lion's Mane Mushroom

lion's mane

Lion’s mane mushrooms are both delicious and functional our favorite combination! This shaggy fungi grows across the northern hemisphere, and is widely regarded as a fantastic immune supplement. Lion's mane is also used by Buddhist monks to enhance meditation, as this powerful little mushroom may contain compounds that promote brain function. Anti-inflammatory and immunostimulating, we love lion's mane mushroom both on our dinner plates and in our coffee, tea, and smoothies as a nutritious and brain-boosting supplement.
Cordyceps mushrooms


Cordyceps (or "Himalayan Gold", as it's fondly nicknamed) grows wild in the Himalayan foothills of Tibet and Bhutan and has been used for thousands of years in traditional Chinese medicine. While wild cordyceps grow on caterpillars and other insects, modern cultivation methods are bug-free and 100% vegan! We love these beautiful fungi for its energy support. It's the perfect pair for a cup of coffee or tea, as it can help increase stamina and blood oxygen intake for a gentle lift of energy. A superfood in every sense of the word, some studies suggest antioxidants in cordyceps can slow the effects of aging (lets just say its a regular around the Picnik office). 

Green tea field

amino acids

Let us put our lab coats on real quick– we're leaving the world of adaptogenic herbs and plants and entering the realm of atoms and neurons. Amino acids are simply building blocks of protein, used by your body in various processes such as building muscle and regulating immune function. We add two important amino acids to our Vanilla Oatmilk Adaptogen Creamer: L-tyrosine and L-theanine. Like Frodo and Sam, mac and cheese, or Mulder and Scully, this dynamic duo is practically made to be together. L-tyrosine is a calming, mood-lifting amino acid which may help your body produce serotonin and dopamine. This creates a buffer for your mind to combat stress, jitters, and nerves while helping to improve cognition levels. Enter L-theanine: an amino acid found in green and black teas, it can increase your focus while reducing anxiety. Togther (and especially when combined with caffeine) this powerful combination works synergistically to help support stamina, energy levels, and focus.

adaptogens + you

In a society more plugged in than ever before, it's crucial that we manage our stress and anxiety levels to lead a healthy and happy life. A nutritious diet, exercise, and a sprinkle of adaptogens can help you stay focused, energized, and if not stress-free, then stress-less! Adaptogens are most powerful when used everyday for long periods of time, and Picnik Vanilla Oatmilk Adaptogen Creamer makes it easier than ever before. Simply pour it in and stir, shake, or blend your way to bliss. Our Picnik Adaptogen Blend contains 1500 mg of adaptogenic herbs, plants, and mushrooms combined with mood-boosting amino acids to help you have your best morning ever. We like to call it your sunrise side-kick.

Vanilla Oatmilk Adaptogen Creamer makes it easy + delicious to get your dose of daily adaptogens!

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