Do you often find yourself in a situation when you are halfway through your day, and your energy plummets? You turn to coffee, chocolate or energy drinks that may give you a lift in energy, but sadly only temporarily. Stress plus these foods create a massive surge in cortisol, our stress hormone produced in adrenal glands, which, in the long run, may reduce your ability to manage stress.
So, let’s talk about our adrenals. Your adrenal glands are two almond shaped glands that sit on top of your kidneys. Their job is to excrete adrenaline and cortisol, your stress hormones. They get you out of bed in the morning, help to regulate your energy levels and help us get out of danger.
The problem is that they can be over-used and not nourished enough. Some of us are better equipped to handle stress but the rest of us have adrenal glands that are overworked and tired.
To make sure they work properly, check your diet first.
Eliminate caffeine as it’s a stimulant and it can interfere with your natural circadian rhythm. Regulating your blood sugar levels is also key. If we go without food for a long period of time, then this creates a stress reaction, draining adrenals.
You may simply not be getting enough nutrients from your diet, or you may not be absorbing or utilising them correctly, especially from the B vitamin group. If this is the case, then the issues need to be addressed.
When I have ruled out any health conditions such as low thyroid or diabetes, I always recommend good quality multivitamin with a broad range of food state nutrients that are well absorbed by the body
Adrenal fatique leaves a person feeling not just tired but also susceptible to illness. When the adrenals are exhausted, they are no longer able to maintain appropriate levels of cortisol which is secreted by adrenal glands in response to any stressful event. Ongoing state of stress, poor diet, lack of exercise, irregular sleep, and long work hours — this is a recipe for adrenal burnout!
But before the adrenals get completely exhausted, first you will have some warning signs which include:
- Changes in mood
- Feeling tired in a morning when you wake up
- Various gut disorders
- Low sex drive or irregularity in menstrual cycle
- Weight gain
- Achy joints, stiff neck, low back pain
- Frequent illnesses such as colds and flu
- Trouble falling asleep or staying asleep
If not treated in time, adrenal exhaustion may lead to the following diseases:
- Heart disease
- Autoimmune disorders, hypothyroidism, and rheumatoid arthritis
- Gut disorders, like irritable bowel syndrome
- Hormonal imbalance, such as PCOS, irregular periods or possibly infertility
Getting these conditions typically means that stress has been severe or chronic enough to lead to the breakdown of many systems within the body. Sometimes there may be other signs of inflammation and irregular levels of cortisol, including hormone-related problems in women, often diseases such as PCOS.
Adrenal burnout typically involves more than one lifestyle factor. Because diet is something that we can control, it is the first step that we can take in managing stress. A programme to energise and detoxify the body can help you to move from adrenal exhaustion into a healthy state of being.
Here is 5 essential parts of my full adrenal fatique support programme for restoring adrenal health:
- The adrenals need vitamins and minerals to thrive. We will be concentrating on eating plenty of fresh organic food. Nutrient-dense foods will help you to support daily energy levels and reduce inflammation.
- Supplementing with the highest quality blend of micro and macro nutrients to support the adrenals, the liver and other organs.
- Cleansing the liver of toxic buildup, while repairing liver tissue at the same time.
- Mild exercising – sadly you can not work too hard in the gym if you have this condition, I am afraid, so I will explain you what you can actually do.
- Learning the ways to control your stress is a very important part of a programme.