Wonder Woman Tonic - for Energy & Nourishment
Updated: Feb 21
I have a lot of women clients that I recommend they wean off of coffee due to its imbalancing effects, especially as they move towards menopause and it becomes even more critical to decrease stress and protect their supply of estrogen & progesterone.
Caffeine is taxing on the adrenals, disrupts reproductive hormones, and can be overstimulating to the nervous system exacerbating anxiety and a busy mind. In addition, it is a diuretic and an appetite suppressant, deranging our natural hunger cues and causing dehydration.
Below is a scrumptious little concoction that I created to buffer the blow to those trying to wean off of their daily cup or two of coffee while providing revitalizing energy and nourishment to the body and mind. FIrst, let's take a look at some of the medicinal properties of the herbs in this tonic.
Rhodiola is an adaptogen and a nervine. It revitalizes the body and mind increasing energy, stamina, and mental capacity. It is a great mood stabilizer providing support for anxiety & depression. Smaller doses are recommended for those with high Vata as it can be overstimulating for those with a heightened nervous system.
Shatavari is a powerful adaptogenic herb for the reproductive system (especially for women) due to its cooling, grounding, and moistening qualities. It is considered a Rasayana (restorative, nourishing) for the blood and the reproductive & digestive systems. It contains phytoestrogens so those with estrogen-sensitivity, use with caution. This is a heavier herb, so take it with heating herbs to support Kapha.
Rose is cooling and sweet and has anti-inflammatory & aphrodisiac qualities. Rose is especially balancing for those with high pitta, but lovely for all doshas. Its aroma has a bliss-enhancing property called somnasya jana. Need I say more!?
Raw Cacao is bitter, pungent, light, dry & heating. It is most beneficial for Kapha due to the opposing qualities of the two. It does contain caffeine, albeit a lot less than a cup of coffee, so it does stimulate the mind, but the amount of cacao in this tonic contains 6-12 mg caffeine, compared to 95 mg in a cup of coffee. We call this quality rajasic in Ayurveda. It can be overstimulating to Vata & Pitta, but taken in the right amounts and with the right combination of ingredients, it can be enjoyed medicinally on occasion.
Cacao is a great source of magnesium. Magnesium regulates muscle and nerve function and helps relax the muscles - and so many are deficient in this vital nutrient. Cacao is also one of the highest plant-based food sources of iron and it contains anandamide, which is also called the “bliss molecule,” because it helps us to feel good longer. Wow!
Wonder Women Tonic (Men please enjoy as well!)
⅛ Rhodiola root (maybe a smidge more for K)
⅛ dried Rose petals (maybe a little more for P)
1 tsp Shatavari root powder
1-2 raw Cacao wafers (1 for V, 2 for P&K)
2-3 Tbsp Coconut cream (3 for V - they need more fat)
1 tsp of sweetener (honey for V & K - maple syrup, date sugar for P)
Spices for your dosha (see add-ins below)
[V=Vata, P=Pitta, K=Kapha]
Steep Rhodiola & Rose petals in 16 oz of water for 5-10 min
Heat & stir Coconut cream & raw Cacao in a pot gently until cacao melted
Strain Rhodiola & Rose & add to the pot
Add Shatavari + sweetener & stir
Blend & froth all ingredients with a hand blender
Serve - makes 2 cups
Add-ins for doshas:
Vata - a pinch of cardamom, even a sprinkle of sea salt
Pitta - a drop or two of vanilla
Kapha - a hearty pinch of cinnamon & ginger - or both!
For a truly caffeine-free drink, omit the cacao. It’s still delicious!
The best time to drink this is in the morning and early afternoon after a meal. The burst of energy it provides will be best utilized during the day, and won't interfere with the natural waning of energy in the evening necessary to promote restful sleep.