Cravings For Salty Foods
A part of the adrenal glands named the cortex is responsible for producing aldosterone, a mineralocorticoid which works with the kidney to regulate our fluid and mineral excretion. When the adrenals become fatigued, we produce less aldosterone and tend to excrete large amounts of important minerals in our urine. Individuals with depleted endocrine systems often report frequent urination, which is often attributed to age but may actually be caused by depleted adrenals.
This means that Adrenal Fatigue sufferers effectively lose the ability to balance the levels of minerals like sodium, potassium, and magnesium in their blood. In turn, this leads to cravings for foods which will replace the sodium that we have lost. If you find yourself suddenly craving salty snacks, you could be suffering from Adrenal Fatigue.
What Are Mental And Emotional Stressors
Research tells us what causes a stress response. The stress response happens when peoples lives are disrupted. It does not matter if it is physical, like a car accident or emotional, like the death of a loved one. Stress is stress no matter what the cause. Constant stress that is has bad health effects. Your healthy stress responses become unregulated and exhausted. And, sometimes, they fail altogether.
Do You Want To Heal Your Adrenal Fatigue For Good
Are you tired of the guesswork involved in treating your adrenal fatigue?
Are you frustrated that your doctor doesnt understand your condition?
Are you ready to stop feeling tired all the time and take control of your health?
The Adrenal Fatigue Solution contains everything you need to start treating your Adrenal Fatigue.
Karin B. saysBefore I read The Adrenal Fatigue Solution, I was pretty depressedI was still sluggish and still struggling with this weight gain and still needing my supplements. Now Im hopefulI see how Ive been exercising wrong for my energy level, and how my diet has been fighting against my supplements. Not all of these changes are going to be easy, but now I know how I can start to improve my own health. Its so encouraging to know that I have more control than I realized!
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Difficulty Getting Up Each Morning Even After A Long Sleep
As we discuss in The Adrenal Fatigue Solution, one of the major causes of Adrenal Fatigue is getting insufficient sleep. Getting more rest is, therefore, one of the best ways to recover. However, when suffering from Adrenal Fatigue many patients wake up extremely tired and foggy, even after getting a long sleep. This can be caused by one of two factors.
Adrenal Fatigue sufferers in the early stages of their condition tend to be under significant stress, and therefore their adrenaline and cortisol levels are high. This interrupts the natural 24-hour cycle of cortisol levels, leading to a state of alertness in the evening that prevents restful sleep.
Those Adrenal Fatigue sufferers who are at a later stage of the condition will have consistently lower levels of cortisol. However, their blood sugar will tend to be much lower during the early morning . Your body realizes its hungry and forces you to wake up. Many Adrenal Fatigue sufferers are chronic late-night snackers for exactly this reason. You can get a better nights sleep by improving your sleep hygiene.
Reduce Caffeine And Sugar
Cutting down on caffeine and refined sugar will help your body reconnect with your natural energy cycles and reduce inflammatory responses in the body. While you dont need to avoid these substances completely, it may be a good idea to reduce your coffee intake to just one cup in the mornings, and aim for fruit instead of baked goods in the afternoon.
Caffeine and sugar are stimulants that increase your energy in the short-term, making it seem like a good fix when youve hit an afternoon slump. These substances cause blood glucose levels to soar, and when they come back down, it can create a cycle of addiction and cravings that rob you of rest and sustainable nutrients.
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Take The Right Supplements
While itd be great if we could get all of our daily nutritional requirements from food alone, its rarely possible. The way in which food is grown, stored, processed and cooked destroys much of its nutritional value. Although most whole foods still harbor plenty of health benefits, they may not have enough of the vitamins and minerals you need to recover from adrenal fatigue.
Adrenal fatigue also wreaks havoc on the ability of your gut to absorb nutrients from food, as chronic stress hinders normal digestive function. Thats why supplements are a great way to top up your bodys nutritional needs, especially when your stores of a certain nutrient have been depleted for a while.
Here are some of the best supplements to help you recover from adrenal fatigue:
This group of vitamins is the first step in getting your mind and body back into gear. B vitamins work together in helping the body create energy from the food you eat, while also supporting brain function and healthy skin, hair and muscles. Although the role of each B vitamin differs slightly, theyre all vital for a healthy metabolism and energy production.
B12 is particularly important in fact, its commonly referred to as the energy vitamin. Its needed for nerve function, mood regulation and the production of red blood cells. Red blood cells carry oxygen throughout the body, which aids energy production in the cells. Vitamins B12 and B6 are also linked to positivity and mental alertness.
Treatment Of Adrenal Fatigue
“Optimal adrenal health is one of the major keys to the enjoyment of life,” according to Dr. Wilson. If you have adrenal fatigue, you can fully live life again by making the necessary lifestyle and dietary changes to treat your disorder.
Treating adrenal fatigue is as easy as:
- Adopting a natural whole-foods diet
- Avoiding junk food
- Drinking high quality water, not from the tap. Distilled or spring waters are best
- Eating five to six servings of vegetables each day through juicing or adding them to meals
- Avoiding white flour and other processed grains
- Adding sea salt to your diet, replacing your table salt
- Taking 2,000 to 5,000 milligrams of vitamin C each day
- Taking a high strength B-complex supplement
- Taking high quality fish oils
- Adding licorice root extract and kelp to your diet
- Doing a detox and using an infra red sauna
- Replacing toxic chemical products used around the house with non-toxic alternatives
- Spending some time in the sun each day
- Doing something fun each day
- Getting lots of rest
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What Causes Adrenal Fatigue
Adrenal fatigue is directly related to your adrenal glands. These are two small organs located on the top of your kidneys.
Theyre responsible for the production of the stress hormones like cortisol, adrenaline, and norepinephrine.
The levels of your stress hormones spike up when youre in very stressful situations. This is also called the fight-or-flight mode. So, these hormones are pretty good at handling acute stress. They help your body function at its optimal levels while youre going through a stressful situation.
But if stress is part of your everyday routine, then you suffer from chronic stress. Your adrenal glands have to keep producing high levels of cortisol all the time.
However, this constant production of cortisol cant last for too long and at some point, your adrenal glands will not be able to produce adequate levels of stress hormones.
This leaves you with the feeling of tiredness, weakness, and a bunch of other symptoms related to the hormone imbalance in your body.
What Should You Eat If You Have Adrenal Fatigue
I strongly recommend the paleo or keto diet to all of my patients. However, if you dont have the energy to change your diet, do this one thing:
Eat real food.
If your food comes in a bag or box, dont eat it. If your food doesnt rot, dont eat it. Follow this rule and youll be 80% of the way towards a diet that helps you beat adrenal fatigue.
Now, if youre eating real food and it doesnt seem to help your energy levels, check out my digital course Stop Feeding Fatigue. In this course, I help you identify exactly which foods give you energy and which foods take it away. By the end of the course, youll have identified your very own adrenal fatigue fighting nutrition plan.
Next, well discuss the most important vitamins and minerals needed to overcome adrenal fatigue!
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So Whats A Person To Do
Navigating this ocean of uncertainty is not an easy task. Symptoms associated with adrenal fatigue probably have multiple causes. Frequent follow-up visits and a strong patient-clinician partnership are critical elements for success. Alternative and complementary clinicians often have better results, because the appointments tend to last longer and they view patients through a more holistic lens. An important word of caution: some medical professionals prescribe cortisol analogs to treat adrenal fatigue. Cortisol replacement can be dangerous even in small doses. Unintended consequences can include osteoporosis, diabetes, weight gain, and heart disease.
Regardless of what we call it, there are millions of people suffering from similar symptoms, and a personalized plan that involves counseling, medications, supplements, lifestyle change, among others could work for many. Improvement following these programs is slow, and the evidence is weak, but I hope advances in big data, genomics, and its relationship with the environment and the microbiome, may shine a light on how to better help people who suffer from these ailments.
The adrenal fatigue theory may fit like a glove to explain your symptoms, which are very real. But before buying expensive protocols over the Internet to treat something were not even sure exists, take a deep dive and reexamine your lifestyle. The path to feeling better may be closer than you think.
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Risks And Side Effects Of Herbs
These adaptogenic herbs are mostly safe to consume but side effects may occur in a dose-dependent manner ..
Side effects include:
- stomach ache, indigestion, or heartburn
- nausea, vomiting
- Rhodiola Rosea can cause dry mouth and dizziness
- Holy Basil, Cordyceps, and Reishi mushrooms delay clotting mechanisms in the blood
When consuming adaptogenic herbs, it is necessary to know that some of these herbs can interact with your prescribed medication. So thoroughly research these herbs to find the one that is best suited for you.
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Move Your Body Gently
When it comes to adrenal fatigue, its often helpful to stick to moderate exercise in place of strenuous activity. Sometimes its best to just take a breather, and give your body the rest it needs!
Try focusing on mild movements that get the blood and lymph nodes moving gently. This could range from walking, hiking, yoga, dancing, or simply stretching. Pay attention to how you feel and make sure not to overdo it when your muscles feel weak and tired.
Foods For Adrenal Fatigue You Should Avoid Eating
Now that you know the best foods to add to your diet, what foods should you avoid?
First, try to limit highly processed foods with lots of refined sugar or unhealthy fats.
Then, try to steer clear of these foods on a regular basis. Occasionally, theyll be fine, but in moderation! They dont help you like the other foods for adrenal fatigue on our list will, and can even worsen your symptoms.
Avoid these foods and drinks whenever possible:
- White flour
Make sure to pay attention to how frequently you eat! Start the day with a balanced, nutrient-rich breakfast.
Then, continue to eat regularly throughout the day to give your body the nutrients and energy it needs to produce cortisol, respond appropriately to stress, and prevent adrenal fatigue.
Are you ready to start healing your adrenal fatigue? Knowing which foods to enjoy and which to avoid is the first step to an adrenal fatigue-free lifestyle. Eating better is the first step to feeling better and balancing your body.
Adding the right foods for adrenal fatigue to your diet is a good way to prevent and heal your symptoms.
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Telltale Signs Of Adrenal Exhaustion Include:
No matter how much sleep you get, adrenal fatigue causes a persistent plummet in daily energy levels. With the depletion of the adrenal glands, levels of important hormones like cortisol and other neurotransmitters drop, leading to constant feeling of fatigue and tiredness.
Salty Food Cravings
If you find yourself reaching for the chips, popcorn, and salty snacks constantly, it could be a sign that your adrenal glands arent working the way theyre supposed to. This is because the adrenal glands are responsible for producing aldosterone, a hormone that controls our excretion of fluids and minerals.
With a reduction in the amount of aldosterone produced, it causes us to urinate more and excrete more minerals in the urine, which can cause a craving for salty foods.
Weak Immune System
Adrenal fatigue has a big impact on cortisol levels, which can cause a serious decline in the function of the immune system.
This is because cortisol has an anti-inflammatory effect and is responsible for regulating the function of the immune system. With less cortisol in the body, our immune system isnt able to work the way it should, opening the door for infections and illness.
Difficulty Handling Stress
When stress starts to build up, we depend on hormones like cortisol, norepinephrine, and adrenaline to help our body deal with it. So when your adrenal glands arent producing enough of these hormones, it can make even the smallest stressors seem overwhelming.
Is Adrenal Fatigue A Real Condition
The term adrenal fatigue was coined in 1998 by the naturopath and alternative medicine expert James Wilson.
However, the condition was never recognized officially by the medical society.
So, if you go to your GP with adrenal fatigue symptoms, you will not get diagnosed with the condition.
Even if you take a cortisol test that shows that the stress hormone levels are in the lower boundary range, youll be told youre healthy despite feeling tired and weak all the time.
Thats because this range is very wide, from 7-28 ug/dL in the morning to 2-18 ug/dL in the afternoon.
So, you can feel very different depending on whether your cortisol levels are in the low, medium, or high range of the normal boundaries.
Also, traditional doctors only recognize the more severe condition called adrenal insufficiency, which happens when your cortisol levels are even more depleted.
So what can you do if you suspect you suffer from adrenal fatigue but your GP wont diagnose you?
Read our tips to find out!
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What Are The Symptoms Of Adrenal Fatigue
Weve already established that adrenal fatigue can make you feel exhausted all the time. But theres a bunch of other symptoms you might experience along the way.
Some of them are:
- Weaker immune system
- Difficulty falling asleep in the night and waking up in the morning
Keep in mind that these symptoms might be an indicator of a more serious underlying medical condition. In that case, you should consider consulting a doctor.
Use Natural Herbs Called Adaptogens
Adaptogenic herbs are known to help the body adapt to situations of stress, balancing your hormones and calming an overactive adrenal system. Be sure to speak with your healthcare provider about possible interactions between adaptogens and medications before consuming these foods. Some helpful options include:
Typically used in Ayurvedic medicine, this herb can help stabilize thyroid hormones, reduce anxiety, and fight inflammation. It may also support immune cells that help the body fight off infection.
Licorice root is known for its restorative qualities that can help calm you down in stressful situations. It does this by blocking the conversion of cortisol into cortisone, a process that leads to higher amounts of circulating cortisol . It also contains glycyrrhizic acid, an active compound that can repair the stomach lining and soothe gastrointestinal issues.
This herb can help reduce anxiety, irritability, and improve concentration. It works by stabilizing the secretion of cortisol in high-stress situations.
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This Is How To Recover From Adrenal Fatigue
Recovering from adrenal fatigue depends upon you. It means changing your lifestyle, changing your relationships with other people, and taking good care of yourself. I tell my patients to treat yourself just like you would a newborn babywith a lot of loving care and attention. When you are tired, go to sleep. When you are hungry be sure you have plenty of healthful, nourishing food. When you are stressed by someones demands, learn to say no, at least temporarily. In this way, you will slowly learn to take the stress off your adrenal glands and allow them to heal.
The Myth Of Adrenal Fatigue
When patients present claiming that stress has worn out their adrenal glands, it can be easy to discount their belief in adrenal fatigue but they often have real symptoms that require treatment.
If more proof is needed that the Internet provides a wealth of information and misinformation, endocrinologists need to look no further than the increasing number of patients who claim a diagnosis of adrenal fatigue.
Although current medical science recognizes no such condition, physicians need to take the complaints and symptoms of these patients seriously, according to Endocrine Society President Lynnette Nieman, MD, who is a senior investigator at the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases: Our role is to be good active listeners to determine if there is a true medical disorder lurking among the complaints. It is very important to take the person seriously, not to brush them off and say there is no adrenal fatigue. These people are suffering from something, so we need to take the suffering seriously.
The patient may have already been to see a naturopath who promotes the condition, so may be taking supplements of unknown formulations to treat it.
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