Adrenal Fatigue

What are the Adrenal Glands & What do They Do?

The adrenal glands are 2 triangular shaped glands that sit on top of your kidneys. Roughly the size of your thumb, these glands are some of the most overused glands in our over-worked society. Their primary function is producing cortisol, aldosterone, adrenaline and androgens. Cortisol, also known as the stress hormone, is a vital hormone that our bodies need. However, when our adrenal glands are overworked and fatigued, production and transportation of cortisol to the body is de-regulated. They begin producing cortisol at inappropriate times and the body’s ability to manufacture this hormone, begins to decline. In modern society, our stress response is on high alert so many times per day that our that the body has no time to recover. Our body is so engaged in managing cortisol, that it interferes with the ability to produce aldosterone, epinephrine, testosterone and androgens. These hormones are fundamental for keeping our stress levels under control. Our body’s are designed for survival, therefore, adrenaline/epinephrine continues to be produced in times of stress and crisis. High levels of this fight or flight hormone, further depletes the body’s ability to cope with the production of positive hormones necessary for stress management. Your body knows, that in the morning we need to get up and get moving. Around 8am each day, our levels of cortisol levels will naturally spike. With healthy functioning adrenal glands these levels will taper off in the evening. Sadly, the truth is we are living such overwhelmingly busy lives, that our adrenal glands can’t recover and they become chronically fatigued. What we are seeing here is a pattern, a vicious cycle. Chronic stress is a primary contributor to this syndrome and it’s symptoms are indistinguishable. Below is a list of symptoms related with adrenal fatigue syndrome. Do at least 10 of these symptoms afflict you? If so, you are suffering the effects of adrenal fatigue. Many of these symptoms may seem individually vague, but if you are plagued chronically by at least 10 of these symptoms then it can definitively indicate Adrenal Fatigue Syndrome.

Symptoms of Adrenal Fatigue Syndrome

  • Lack of energy and chronic fatigue
  • Needing coffee or caffeinated tea to get going in the morning
  • Decreasted ability to handle stress
  • Lightheaded when rising from a horizontal position
  • Cravings for salty  and high protein foods
  • High incidence of getting colds and flus, infections that take linger longer than normal
  • Forgetfulness
  • Decreased sex drive
  • Mild Depression
  • Insomnia
  • Hightened symptoms of PMS. Period that are on the heavy side and then almost stop around the 4th day only to start again for another 2 days
  • Prone to trembling when under pressure
  • Increased effort to perform daily tasks
  • Lack of morning energy; afternoon fatigue around 3-5pm
  • Feeling better for a brief period after eating a meal
  • Often feeling tired between 9-10pm, but resisting bedtime
  • Dry and thin skin
  • Hair loss
  • Hypoglycemia (low blood sugar)
  • Low body temperature
  • Palpitations
  • Diarrhea and alternating constipation
  • Food and/or inhalant sensitivities or allergies
  • Pain in the back with no clear reason

These symptoms can start off slow and go unnoticed. Living under chronically busy and stressed circumstances can lead to us going through the motions of life, yet not truly living it. We become comfortably numb to our environment. Eventually we will burn out and start feeling the heavy weight that our lifestyle is putting on our bodies. These symptoms become harder to ignore and eventually will even become the underlying definition of our lives. Instead of identifying yourself by your passions and character, you will reduce yourself to; the guy who can’t sleep at night, the woman who can’t remember anything, the one who generally feels unwell, dizzy, sick and sad. There is hope in healing from this syndrome. With some lifestyle changes, clean eating regimen and some supportive supplements; I can help give you the tools you need to take your health back. Vitality can be restored, inflammation can be reduced and our response to stress can become healthier. In the midst of this exhausted life we are living, I would love to be a resource in helping you identify what causes Adrenal Fatigue Syndrome and what you can do about it. Be Well, Be Aware, Be Happy! I hope to see you soon!

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