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Thyroid UK
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Holy Basil & Rhodiola

Just wondered if anyone has had experience of taking either of these adaptogenic herbs?

I've had an awful lot of stress recently, most of which I've now removed from my life, but the after effects are lingering and I think I still have some adrenal issues. I've been taking Ashwagandha for some months now and thought I might try adding in one or two of the above. But as always I'm a little bit wary without hearing of other experiences.

4 Replies

Holy Basil is believed to reduce cortisol levels, and I think rhodiola rosea may be the same.

Do you know if you have high cortisol? A 4-part saliva test which also includes a DHEA test is the best way of testing cortisol. Blood tests are not very helpful.

If you take rhodiola it is advised that it mustn't be taken after 1pm because it can disturb sleep.

Holy Basil can be taken at any time in my experience.

I used to take rhodiola quite early in the morning and I found that it gave me a little burst of energy that I found helpful. I used it for quite a while, but eventually, after about 18 months or two years it gave me the jitters and I had to stop.

I take Holy Basil to lower my cortisol late afternoon and just before bed. I find it helps me with getting to sleep.

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Hi Humanbean, thanks for your reply. I read a few other posts related to both just after I posted today. I have had a couple of saliva tests done, the last one being in June last year. On that one all 4 samples came back as 'high' and given that I've been in a stressful job and had further stresses (long story) ever since, I can't imagine it's changed much. I've recently left the job because of the 'long story' and this is my first week with no work. I even had to take sick leave the last 3 days I was due to work this week because the situation at work became intolerable. My boss who I had always had a very good relationship with, changed his attitude towards me once I gave in my notice and I had a rather rude email from the boss above which made me very angry. Was in a kind of meltdown situation towards the end of last week, tears everyday and terrible anxiety. After talking with one of my sisters, she just told me to not go back, get a message to them to say I'm not well. So that's what I did.

No acknowledgement whatsoever from my boss or anyone else in that workplace. So now I'm concentrating on me and trying to get back on top and job hunting for a job in a different environment altogether.


Well, I am not aware of either rhodiola or Holy Basil being dangerous, so I would suggest trying them. You may find them helpful.

When I first started taking Holy Basil I had to take 2 capsules, 3 times a day, to notice any effect, then after several weeks I reduced to 2 capsules, twice a day, then finally down to 2 capsules once a day.

I take these :


Do shop around. I find the price of it fluctuates a lot.

I haven't taken rhodiola for several years now, and can't remember which brand I took.


I take Holy Basil at night, it helps with a good nights sleep.


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