Do you feel tired, lethargic and unable to concentrate no matter how much you sleep? Has your doctor been unable to find a medical reason for these symptoms? If this describes how you feel a majority of the time you may be experiencing a stress-related condition called adrenal fatigue. The good news is that there are natural remedies for adrenal fatigue that you can easily fit into your lifestyle. I will be discussing some of them today.
What is Adrenal Fatigue?
Adrenal fatigue is also known as adrenal exhaustion. It occurs when your adrenal glands fail to keep up with the enormous amount of stress that many people experience on a daily basis I. It mainly affects 2 hormones. Cortisol is the primary stress hormone responsible for controlling the immune system, maintaining blood sugar, regulating, blood pressure, sleep, sex drive and producing an inflammatory response. Aldosterone helps to maintain the balance of fluids and electrolytes
Adrenal Fatigue is a term used to describe a cluster of symptoms caused by stress. Adrenal fatigue is not recognized as an official diagnosis by the medical community. It is commonly diagnosed by a Holistic practitioner based on symptoms. It is sometimes diagnosed by a test that measures the amount of cortisol present in saliva throughout the day.
Adrenal fatigue is not the same as Addison s disease. The symptoms are similar but the cause is not the same. Addison’s is an autoimmune disorder in which the bodies own immune system gradually destroys the outer layer of the adrenal glands. It is a rare disease but life-threatening if you have it.
- Unexplained weight loss
Weight loss can occur for many reasons. Unexplained weight loss means that several pounds have been lost in a short period without any known reason.
Fatigue refers to extreme exhaustion that could result from mental or physical exertion or sickness. Fatigue is a cause for concern when it lasts for more than 2 weeks.
- Body aches
Common Complaints include backaches and headaches.
- Feeling light headed.
An unpleasant sensation of dizziness or feeling like you may faint.
- Low blood pressure
Most doctors consider blood pressure to be to low when it causes symptoms.
- Digestive Issues
This may include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, or stomach pain.
- Mood changes
Such as irritability and depression.
- Low sex drive
- Missed or irregular menstrual periods in women.
- Chronic Stress
Stress is considered the primary cause of Adrenal exhaustion. It can be emotional, physical, mental or environmental in nature.
- Lack of sleep
- Chronic Disease
Diseases include asthma, diabetes or arthritis. They place demands on the adrenal glands. Suffering from these diseases for long periods of time overworks the organs.
- Poor dietary intake including high sugar consumption and processed foods
- Prolonged exposure to pollution and toxins.
This may come from air, excess chlorine in water, pesticides in vegetables and antibiotics in meat.
What can you do about it?
There a 3 basic things you can do to reverse the symptoms of. Adrenal Fatigue
As in all cases where health recovery is involved, diet is a huge factor. Some foods offer adrenal support by replenishing the adrenal energy enabling the system to recover. Other foods should be avoided.
- Avoid processed foods and sugar as much as possible.
- Consume healthy fats such as coconut oil and real butter. Avoid hydrogenated oils.
- Eat 40 grams of protein in the morning to support adrenal glands throughout the day.
- Eat regular meals. Fasting causes stress on the adrenal glands.
- Stay hydrated. Drink at least 8 glasses of water per day.
- Introduce more plant-based foods into your diet.
Stress is the number one cause of adrenal exhaustion. Finding ways to manage it is crucial to recovery.
Here are some things you can try:
- Avoid or reduce stimulants such as alcohol, nicotine, and caffeine.
- Get adequate sleep. Aim for at least 8 hours per night.
- Learn relaxation techniques such as meditation and self-hypnosis.
- Talk to someone. This can be a friend or a professional counselor.
- Keep a stress journal.
- Rest if you are sick.
- Don’t be afraid to say no to people.
- Take time for yourself. Make time for activities you enjoy doing.
- Use lavender and rosemary essential oils.
- Avoid negative people and self-negativity.
Take Adrenal Supporting Supplements
Nutritional deficiencies are common with stress and adrenal fatigue. The following vitamins can be helpful:
- Vitamin C
- B vitamins (B5, B6 and B12)
- Vitamin D
- Ashwagandha (you can buy it here)
This is an adaptogenic herb that has shown results for lowering cortisol and balancing thyroid hormones. Do not take ashwaganda if you are pregnant or nursing.
Adrenal recovery is achieved and prevented by making healthy lifestyle changes. A balance of sleep, exercise, fun and positivity will give you long-lasting results. It is advisable to consult with a medical doctor to rule out a serious medical condition before treating yourself.
Do you suffer from adrenal fatigue? If you have any additional tips or advice let me know in the comments below.