Your Adrenals are endocrine glands that sit right above your kidneys and are responsible for releasing hormones, mainly in response to stress.
Adrenal Fatigue is simply tired adrenals. And when your adrenals are tired well so are you! The hormones that the adrenal produces pretty much regulate all the functions of your body, for example your thyroid and sex hormones. But what stands out is they produce hormones that influence your ability to metabolize fat, regulate blood sugar and deal with stress.
In today’s world our daily lives put a demand on your adrenal system far beyond what they can produce. So the symptoms you are feeling are exactly what’s happening to your adrenals. If you feel great, you know your adrenals are working properly!
We all experience normal “stress factors” in our lives. It’s called living and they don’t have to necessarily be negative. But they are the continual little things that are a wakeup call that we need to take care of our adrenals and give them a little tender loving care before they give up on us.
Our adrenals are always responding to what’s going on on the outside, so they can figure out what kind of physical response that you need from them.
Do you need an adrenaline surge for an emergency situation?
Do you need more cortisol which tells your body to hang on to fat because you starved yourself all day and you might need it later on to live off of?
Does your glucose need to be regulated to give you the insulin surge you need because you just ate a piece of Red Velvet Cake?
What causes Adrenal Fatigue?
There are numerous reasons your adrenal glands go into overdrive and get tired, but the common denominator is stress. Taking steps to reduce stress in your life is the Golden Ticket to Healthy living and adrenal restoration.
What are the symptoms of Adrenal Fatigue?
Remember Adrenal Fatigue does just what it says. Makes you fatigued. But there are other symptoms as well.
- The inability to cope with stress
- Anxiety attacks
- Feeling tired all the time or very frequently
- Low Blood Sugar
- Low Blood Pressure
- Feeling dizzy upon rising from a horizontal position
- Startle easily
- An increase or severity of allergic reactions
- Weight gain specifically around the belly
- Sensitivity to light or night blindness
- Erratic Sleep patterns – up all night, sleep all day, 2nd winds when you should be sleeping.
- Tough time getting or staying asleep
- Low Sex Drive
- Frequently getting sick or the inability to recover quickly.
- Exercise makes you feel worse not better
- Erratic food cravings.
What can be done about Adrenal Fatigue?
Taking the right supplements is the first step to adrenal repair and very important. Your body needs all the minerals, nutrients, and enzymes that unfortunately are not in our nutritionally bankrupt foods. The right nutrients are important for adrenal support and improving poor adrenal function. There are so many supplements on the market, so be careful and make sure you choose a brand that are high in quality and come from clean superior sources.
This is what I suggest:
Vitamin C is essential to the production of adrenal glands and its hormones, and is used up very quickly by the body when it is under stress. Adequate vitamin C supplementation is vital to improving not only adrenal function but needed to saturate body tissues such as the brain, heart and liver. It also plays an important role in the body’s ability to burn fat for fuel; it helps the biosynthesis of carnitine. Also decreased carnitine levels lead to increased fatigue during exercise which leads to exercise intolerance.
Magnesium is another essential supplement for producing adrenal hormones. There is almost always a deficiency when you have adrenal fatigue. Magnesium at bedtime will help you relax and sleep better, alleviate heart palpitations, and relieve the cramping during your menstrual cycle .
GABA while not directly affecting your adrenal glands, can be a valuable part of your adrenal fatigue recovery. This amino acid helps to reduce anxiety and relax mentally and is actually beneficial in assisting weight loss.
Healthy Lifestyle tips for improved adrenal function
One of your adrenal glands stress response hormone is cortisol. Any time your body detects stress, it releases more cortisol.
Sleep depreivation causes your body to release MORE cortisol. In a perfect world your level of cortisol is highest in the morning and then decreases by night. But with additional emotional or physical stress it will release more throughout the day.
Too much cortisol in your system at night causes you to wake up frequently during the night and feel tired in the morning. This can lead to a vicious cycle causing more stress because of the lack of sleep. More stress means more cortisol!
Forcing oursleves to carry on while we are tired increases adrenal fatigue. As difficult as it may be, try to sleep when you are tired, listen to your bodys rhythms. It’s trying to tell you something.
Should I Eat or Avoid certain foods?
Eating high quality nutritious foods are important to maintaining adrenal function and keeping blood sugar levels stable.
A few simple strategies are:
Do not eat processed foods or imitation anything. For example “I can’t believe it’s not butter” Ask yourself this; What can you believe it is then? Stay away from artificial sweeteners. These things are nothing but chemicals and do not feed our body.
Stay away from caffeine. If you are a big coffee drinker gradually wean yourself off instead of going cold turkey. Caffeine withdrawals can add stress to your adrenals. In addition caffeine puts your body in an acidic state which is where disease loves to thrive. It also dehydrates you.
Stay away from white sugar and flour. They are simple carbohydrates and require a greater release of insulin, which actually stresses your adrenals by making them work hard to stabilize your blood sugar levels. Always chose whole or multi-grain.
Stay away from Alcohol. Alcohol is a sugar.
Snack frequently and avoids going for long hour not eating. A good rule of thumb is always put a healthy low calorie snack in your mouth every two hours.
Most breakfast foods are fruits and cereals/breads/grains. Most are simple sugars that will spike your blood sugar and cause your adrenals to work harder. A complex carb mixed with a little protein and fat is perfect. This takes longer to metabolize and doesn’t cause that spike. A quick and easy breakfast option is a whey protein meal shake.
Use Sea Salt instead of table salt and do not limit your salt intake. Sodium is absolutely critical for adrenal function, and in adrenal fatigue sufferers it is usually low. Sea Salt has an abundance of trace minerals that table salt is void of.
Increase your intake of water. I can’t stress this enough. Water is the elixir of life. It is essential for every single function of your body even the ones that make hormones like your adrenal glands. Most of the population walk around in a dehydrated state and do not even know it. This leads to malfunctions of our bodily systems which are then mistakenly treated with medication, which further adds stress to the body. And all you needed was water!
Fats are good in your diet, and much needed especially the right kinds of fat. We need fats and cholesterols to make hormones. Good fats are olive oil, real butter, grape seed and coconut oil.
Life is about balance. Take the time to honor your body, remember if you do not take care of yourself how can you take care of the ones you love.
The first Wealth is Health – Ralph Waldo Emerson