Wednesday, October 24, 2012

The Buzz on Rhodiola Rosea [from Issue 2012-10]

Little-Known Herb is a Major Player!

Saturday, September 22nd marked the Autumnal Equinox - the beginning of autumn. From now on we can expect shorter days and dropping temperatures, which for many of us can cause changes in our sleeping patterns, our energy levels and our mood. Sounds gloomy right? It doesn't have to be. Fortunately, there are some herbs out there that can help, and one that is particularly useful at this time of the year is Rhodiola Rosea. Please read on, as we share what we have learned about this "Golden Root," as many generations for thousands of years have prized it as a natural plant remedy for stamina, robust health and longevity.

*When you cut the root of the Rhodiola Rosea it gives off the aroma of a rose - that is why it is called Rhodiola ROSEA!

What is Rhodiola?

Rhodiola Rosea can be found growing in frigid temperatures above 10,000 feet in the high rock altitudes of Altai Mountains of Siberia. This plant has yellow flowers, but it is the root of the Rhodiola Rosea that is prized for its health benefits.

History of Rhodiola

The use of Rhodiola as a medicinal plant can be traced back to 77 A.D. where it was first written about by a Greek doctor. The Vikings used Rhodiola Rosea to increase their endurance and stamina during their journeys. Chinese Emperors would conduct expeditions to bring back the Golden Root from the Siberian Mountains for use in their traditional remedies. The people of Central Asia considered tea brewed from Rhodiola essential to promote health during the cold weather season. Rhodiola Rosea was a prized medicinal herb used throughout parts of Europe and Asia. Since Rhodiola Rosea grew primarily in Siberia, it was so highly valued that it was illegal to trade outside of the borders of the former Soviet Union. The Russians used Rhodiola to survive the harsh Siberian winters.

The Soviet Union began extensive research on how Rhodiola worked after World War II. It was considered TOP SECRET!

The Rhodiola Secret

During the 1950's, researchers outside of the U.S. conducted top secret studies in an attempt to minimize anxiety and stress to obtain a competitive edge in the world. They knew the secret was to find a way to control and balance mood, concentration and focus. They also knew that the greatest competitors in the world had one thing in common: they remain calm, balanced and even-keeled ... even in the most stressful situations. Soldiers, astronauts and Olympians were able to stay strangely cool, calm, and collected even in the most difficult of situations. Uncovered de-classified secret documents reveal that these international researchers were studying a Siberian herb called Rhodiola Rosea. Those studied were more focused, sharp as a tack, with long-lasting stamina and improved performance. Those who knew this secret believed they had a competitive edge on many fronts, so they were reluctant to release it to the world.

We have two events to thank for our knowledge on Rhodiola Rosea-The fall of the Soviet Union and the studies done by Dr. Zakir Ramazanov.

In 1990, when the Soviet Union collapsed suddenly, many classified documents regarding Rhodiola Rosea became available to the Western World. After seeing the results himself and realizing that this discovery could benefit and change the lives of people around the world, who are affected by stress, Doctor Zakir Ramazanov, PhD, left his homeland Russia and is credited for introducing Rhodiola Rosea to the United States. He, himself, had first learned of Rhodiola Rosea from a fellow soldier, whose mother sent him packets of the powdered herb to improve his stamina in war. In his research, Dr. Ramazanov discovered that Rhodiola was used during the Cold War by the Soviet Olympic athletes, the cosmonauts and elite Soviet Military forces. In the late 1990's, Dr. Ramazanov visited BeeAlive at our Valley Cottage offices and shared with us his knowledge and passion for Rhodiola Rosea.

Here are just some of the secrets revealed about Rhodiola Rosea ...

  • Helps increase endurance and stamina
  • Supports the body's response to stress
  • Helps balance mood
  • Promotes mental clarity
  • Promotes healthy sleep
  • Functions as an important adaptogen, increasing the body's resistance to physical, biological, emotional and environmental stress*

What are adaptogens?

Adaptogenic herbs must conform to these standards:

  • They must be non-toxic and cause very few, if any, side effects
  • Produce nonspecific resistance in the body to all types of stressors (physical, chemical and biological)
  • Produce a normalizing influence on the body
An adaptogenic herb, such as Rhodiola Rosea, is able to normalize the body and place the body in proper balance, meaning that they can increase energy if your body is fatigued and also decrease energy if your body is over stimulated. The idea is that a body in balance, on every level, will always perform better than a body out of balance.

Rhodiola for the Inside ...

BeeAlive's Rhodiola Plus was originally introduced as "Bee Happy Plus." We've changed its name and improved upon the original formula to provide our customers with the highest quality Rhodiola Rosea product available in the marketplace. In addition to Rhodiola Rosea Root Extract, we've included Eleuthero and Schisandra fruit and seed extracts, which are also used for their invigoration, stamina and adaptogenic benefits, making this a powerhouse herbal combination.

... and the Outside!

We have recently introduced our BeeAlive Spa Essentials line of all-natural skin care products -- delicate formulas that are hand-crafted in small batches, gently infusing the intense nourishing properties of Royal Jelly, Honey, Propolis and Bee Pollen together with the soothing qualities of natural herbs and essential oils. Along with the intensely hydrating benefits of Shea Oil, our Enriching Royal Jelly Creme features Rhodiola, which when topically applied, helps to de-stress the skin for a vibrant appearance.

Subscribe to BeeAlive's eBUZZ! and Special Offer Emails

Receive BeeAlive's special offers in your email inbox every other week, plus our new eBUZZ! monthly newsletter. Get news, cool product ideas and more in your inbox, then share your comments here on the eBUZZ Blog!

Subscribe to BeeAlive eBUZZ!

Here's a secret tip, too: If you're new to BeeAlive and wish to receive this particular archived eBUZZ! in its entirety [Issue 2012-10], email [email protected] and we'll not only send it to you right away, we'll make sure you begin receiving eBUZZ! each month.

Celebrating National Honey Bee Day (August 18th) [from Issue 2012-9]

Bee to Bee facts

Picture this - you have a wonderful barbeque set up in your backyard. You've picked out the table cloths, invited all your friends and family, made sure there is enough food, and made homemade lemonade. Ahhh, there is nothing like a Labor Day Barbeque with family and friends! Everyone is having a great time, until you start swatting at some uninvited guests ... BEES! Do you know that not every bee is the same? Most of the time we lump all bees into one stinging, unwanted category; but have you ever stopped to look at what type of bee is buzzing by your lunch? The fact is, there are many different species of bees, and some of them want nothing to do with you, except to avoid you as they're bringing back something delicious to the hive. Since there are over 25,000 different types of bees, here are some identifiers of the most common types of bees, flying around your neighborhood.


Honeybees live in large "families" and are found all over the world.
One of the most familiar insects in the world is the Honeybee, playing a key role, as pollinator, in the preservation of the human and natural world. Honeybees live in large "families" in elaborate nests, or hives, where they work together in a structured social order, and can be found all over the world. Honeybees do sting, but they only sting once. The sting can be extremely painful if the stinger is not immediately removed from the skin. Persons allergic to insect stings will have a more severe reaction.
  • Size: 1/2"
  • Shape: Oval, bee shaped
  • Color: Golden yellow with brown bands
  • Legs: 6
  • Wings: Yes
  • Antenna: Yes
  • Diet: Honeybees produce honey from pollen and nectar of the plants they pollinate. They store the honey in honeycombs in their nests, which they use to feed their young in colder months.
  • Nest: Honeybee nests vary in size. They typically build their nests in tree crevices, but will occasionally build nests in attics or chimneys.

Carpenter Bee

Carpenter bees are solitary bees. They build nests just for themselves and only feed their own young. They get their name from their ability to drill through wood. Carpenter bee stingers are not barbed, so they are able to sting over and over again. Carpenter bees do not pose a public health threat, but they can do cosmetic damage to the wood where they build their nests. Carpenter bees are beneficial because they pollinate plants that are ignored by Honeybees.
  • Size: 1"
  • Shape: Oval, bee shaped
  • Color: Blue-black
  • Legs: 6
  • Wings: Yes
  • Antenna: Yes
  • Diet: Worker bees gather both pollen and nectar from flowers to feed to the larvae and other members of the colony.
  • Nest: Carpenter bees bore through soft woods to lay eggs and protect their larvae as they develop. Female carpenter bees will chew a tunnel into a piece of wood to build a nest gallery. The bits of wood she chews and deposits outside the nest are called "frass". The tunnel openings usually look about one or two inches deep, but they can be up to 10 feet long! These tunnels usually have several rooms where the bees hold their eggs and food.


Bumblebees are considered to be beneficial insects because they pollinate crops and plants. They are very social bees and live in large "families".
Unlike honeybees, bumblebees can sting more than once because their stingers are smooth and do not get caught in the skin when they fly away. As part of the aggressive defense of their nests, bumblebees will chase nest invaders for long distances. The bumblebee sting is one of the most painful stings. Swelling and irritation can last for days after you are actually stung.
  • Size: 1"
  • Shape: Oval, bee shaped
  • Color: Black with yellow stripes
  • Legs: 6
  • Wings: Yes
  • Antenna: Yes

Yellow Jackets

They are named yellow jackets because of their distinctive yellow and black stripes. They nest in a football or teardrop shaped nest constructed by a grayish paper substance, which is actually created by the bees themselves by chewing little pieces of wood.

  • Size: 1/2"
  • Color: Alternating bands on the abdomen

Sweat Bees

Attracted to the salt in human sweat, which can make them a nuisance, as they will sting if squeezed or squashed against one's flesh. Nests that are built in rotting wood usually resemble ground nests.

  • Size: 1/4" to 1/2"
  • Color: Black, Brown, Red, or Metallic Green, and sometimes with yellow markings

So next time you are out in the yard take an extra second to try and identify which type of bee you're hanging out with and impress your friends and family at your next fall barbeque.

Information gathered from:;;

Subscribe to BeeAlive's eBUZZ! and Special Offer Emails

Receive BeeAlive's special offers in your email inbox every other week, plus our new eBUZZ! monthly newsletter. Get news, cool product ideas and more in your inbox, then share your comments here on the eBUZZ Blog!

Subscribe to BeeAlive eBUZZ!

Here's a secret tip, too: If you're new to BeeAlive and wish to receive this particular archived eBUZZ! in its entirety [Issue 2012-9], email [email protected] and we'll not only send it to you right away, we'll make sure you begin receiving eBUZZ! each month.