Two of the most common concerns people report to their doctors are lacking energy and gaining weight.
This Nutrition coach hears a lot of that too.
But the problem is that trying to pinpoint the underlying cause of low energy and packing on pounds is like trying to find a needle in a haystack.
Could it be your thyroid? Menopause? Nutrient deficiencies? Depression? Medication side effects? Not exercising enough?
All good possibilities.
But one frequently overlooked cause is adrenal fatigue.
Here’s the scoop on this not-often-discussed condition and how you can start to feel a whole lot better if it’s affecting you.
Hypoadrenia (aka Adrenal fatigue)
Hypoadrenia (Adrenal fatigue) is just as the name sounds—it occurs when your adrenal glands are fatigued from secreting more of the stress hormone cortisol than they are meant to handle…and this is most commonly the result of chronic stress.
Under normal healthy circumstances, we are not supposed to feel stressed ALL THE TIME—stress is intended to be an occasional, temporary thing.
Our bodies were designed to handle stresses with the adrenal glands secreting the hormones adrenaline and cortisol, which work to increase respiration, raise your heart rate, and put more glucose into your bloodstream—all of which help you function at a higher, sharper level to effectively handle the stressful event. Then once the situation passes, cortisol stays around for a while longer to tell your body to refuel itself.
But when your stress level is constantly in OVERDRIVE, so are your adrenals, and eventually they become exhausted.
What happens then is you end up with wildly inconsistent levels of cortisol in your bloodstream—sometimes way too much and other times way too little. And this can cause a whole slew of unwelcome symptoms.
The many faces of adrenal fatigue
Here is a list of symptoms that suggest that you may be dealing with adrenal fatigue—see how many apply to you:
- Weight gain
- Pain in upper back or neck
- Skin problems
- Extreme fatigue
- Insulin resistance
- Brain fog
- Hair loss
- Decreased sex drive/libido
- High blood pressure
- High blood cortisol levels
- Hormone imbalances
- Reduced immune function
- Autoimmune conditions
- Sleep disturbances
- Muscle or bone loss
- Moodiness or irritability
- Sweet and/or salty food cravings
As you would expect, the more of these issues you are facing, the more likely you may be dealing with a degree of adrenal fatigue.
What makes adrenal fatigue especially challenging is that there isn’t one specific test your doctor can run to diagnose it.
He or she may suggest a 24-hour salivary test to examine cortisol levels throughout the day, thyroid testing (since the thyroid and adrenals are closely linked), or neurotransmitter tests…but many times these tests are not definitive.
Pamper those adrenals—and start feeling better!
The good news is you can take some very effective measures to give your adrenal glands the rest, support and pampering they need, and feel a whole lot better as a result!
Here are some of the best ways to enhance the health of your precious little adrenals:
This is numero uno—stress is the most common underlying cause of adrenal fatigue, so it’s vital to reduce stress in your life.
Do whatever works for you—even some deep breathing 3-4 times a day can help.
Also, there is counseling, prayer, taking up a hobby, adopting a pet, massage, infrared sauna and acupuncture.
Dietary do’s and don’ts
Avoid using processed vegetable oils and margarine, as they are highly inflammatory, and your body is likely inflamed enough from the effects of stress. Instead strive to use only good fats such as real butter, olive oil, avocado oil, coconut oil and lard.
Also, avoid coffee as much as possible. Caffeine makes your problems worse by impairing your body’s ability to heal and interfering with your sleep cycle.
And most importantly, eliminate processed foods and soda from your diet. They are nothing but chemicals, sugar and empty calories, and your body is struggling enough without having excess sugar in your bloodstream and throwing off your gut microbiome, as well as chemicals that your liver has to detox out of you.
Concentrate on fresh, wholesome real foods, especially vegetables (other than potatoes and corn), meats, poultry and wild-caught fish, eggs and healthy fats. Also, nuts, seeds, olives and fermented foods are helpful as well.
Drink enough water
Dehydration is common with adrenal fatigue, so make sure you’re drinking at least eight 8 oz. glasses of filtered water each day.
Add a splash of fresh lemon juice to give your body a nice alkaline boost and cleanse your liver.
Get support from helpful supplements
With adrenal fatigue, it’s crucial to make sure your body has health-supporting levels of B vitamins, vitamins A, D and C, as well as zinc, magnesium and selenium. The best way to ensure that you consistently have proper levels of these crucial nutrients is to take a complete multi-vitamin and mineral formula like Super Core.
Super Core’s outstanding formula provides a helpful dose of all essential vitamins and minerals, plus extra support from natural anti-inflammatories and antioxidants!
In addition, ashwagandha is an adaptogen herb that has been shown to significantly help the body in combatting the effects of stress. To embrace the power of this impressive herb and all of its potential health benefits, try our Ashwa Blend Gummies!
Also, a full-spectrum probiotic formula like Super Shield PLUS can help achieve and maintain support strong gut health, which is essential if you are dealing with reduced immune function from adrenal fatigue.
Super Shield PLUS’s effective blend of 15 well-studied probiotic strains is up to this important task, as well as helping to enhance nutrient absorption (which is also common during adrenal fatigue) and pave the way for more regular BMs.
Get daily exercise
Try to work in some form of exercise daily, even if it’s just a brief walk or taking the stairs instead of the elevator. Just be sure to get your doctor’s OK first, especially if you haven’t exercised in a while (or ever).
Establish a set sleep routine
Try to go to sleep at the same time every night, preferably before 10 pm, and strive to get at least 8-9 hours of sleep per night.
Avoid taking in caffeine, sugar or alcohol in the evening, as they all can disrupt your sleep cycle.
Try to make your bedroom as dark as possible. Invest in room darkening shades and dim the display on your alarm clock.
In addition, ashwagandha has been shown to help support better sleep too! Yet another reason to give Ashwa Blend Gummies a try!
Do all you can to support the health of your precious adrenals, and they will return the favor by helping YOU feel a whole lot better!
To your health,