Adrenal fatigue is not just a crisis that happens to high-end athletes. Instead, anyone that leads a stressful life or suffers from prolonged tiredness could be at risk of it.
People who are at high risk of suffering from it include busy new parents, caregivers such as doctors, nurses, and relatives taking care of their invalids. College and post-graduate are not exempted.
In this article, we will be looking at what adrenal fatigue means, the causes, and the symptoms of it. We will also examine the home remedies for treating it that works effectively.
Please note that in some rare cases, your fatigue may be caused by a tumor in your adrenal gland. So, if fatigue persists, there is a need to talk to a medical practitioner.
Additionally, adrenal fatigue can cause the storage of excess fat and reduced energy levels. All of the remedies for it can be categorized into three main steps: dieting, taking supplements, and reducing stress. Keep reading for more on Adrenal fatigue and how to get rid of it.
What Is Adrenal Fatigue?
Adrenal fatigue occurs when there is a disruption of the creation of cortisol in the right amount and at the right time in response to stress by your adrenal glands.
The adrenals, which are two small glands on top of the kidneys, are the body’s seat of hormones. They coordinate almost every hormone in the body and act as a feedback loop.
They are also called the suprarenal glands as they aid in the production of more than 50 body hormones. These hormones are responsible for almost every bodily function, making them vital for life.
Usually, adrenal fatigue comes in three stages. Each of them is known for different levels of cortisol imbalance, and the progression from one to another is often sequential. These stages are:
Stage 1: Wired and Tired
Here, a high level of cortisol is produced, especially at night. This causes insomnia, insulin resistance, and excess weight in the abdominal region. At this stage, you are likely to feel energized in an edgy way.
Stage 2: Stressed and Tired
At this stage, many people wake up very early in the morning; usually, around 3 am, and find going back to sleep a hard feat. Then, as the day progresses, some stressors kick in, and they feel more active. At this point, their cortisol level peaks early, flattens out, and then peaks again by midday or early evening.
Stage 3: Burnout
Here, you are flat out exhausted. That is, regardless of how long you sleep, you still feel tired. Also, your body experiences a low cortisol level. Some people at this stage have low DHEA and thyroid hormone level. This is dangerous as this stage has been connected to an increase in the risk of autoimmune disease.
Causes Of Adrenal Fatigue
Wellness doctors believe that adrenal glands can become overloaded and ineffective when there is acute stress or a case of prolonged chronic stress. This causes an improper release of cortisol in the body. Keep reading for more causes of adrenal fatigue.
1. Stress: Increased stress level is a significant cause of adrenal fatigue.
A study showed that students that are under chronic and long-term pressure when preparing for medical eams experienced unstable cortisol awakening responses.
Since stress limits the increase in cortisol that usually happens in the morning when you wake up to help you feel sharp, it disrupts your ability to stay awake irrespective of your sleep hours. This also affects the response of your cortisol to stress.
2. Depression: Another cause of adrenal fatigue is depression. It is often hard for the body to readjust to normal cortisol level after going through a significant bout of depression. This then causes a recurrence of depressive episodes.
3. Diabetes: Diabetic patients may be at an increased risk of getting fatigued.
A study from the University of Delhi shows that diabetic patients often display a significant increase in chronic stress level and stress response when compared to subjects that have standard glucose tolerance.
This indicates that a disturbed glucose intolerance might be connected with stressing the adrenal gland.
Symptoms of Adrenal Fatigue
When the adrenal glands stop the efficient production of hormones, every body function is affected. Also, as hormone levels reduce and the flow becomes abnormal, your healthy active lifestyle disappears. The symptoms of adrenal fatigue include:
- Chronic Fatigue, which is a state of always being tired
- Autoimmune conditions
- Hormonal imbalance
- Loss of Hair
- Weak stress response
- Brain fog
- Reduced libido and sex drive
- Irregular sleep
- Moodiness and irritability
- Increased desire for sweet and salty food
- Lightheadedness, you are prone to fainting spells
- Insulin resistance
- Loss of bone and muscle mass
- Allergic reactions
- Circulation illness, you may experience frequent numbness in the fingers or circulation problems
- Skin diseases
- Rapid weight gain
You will observe that some of the above-listed symptoms can also be linked to other underlying ailments. However, it happens that the remedies for them are similar and advantageous to your overall health.
If you have experienced or you are currently experiencing the symptoms of adrenal side effects, here are natural remedies to treat your adrenal system and boost its operation.
6 Effective Home Remedies For Adrenal Fatigue
The treatment of adrenal fatigue requires reducing stress in your body or mind, removing toxins from your body, and avoiding negative thoughts. You also need to keep loading your body with healthy foods and supplements while having positive thoughts.
The answer to improving the functioning of your adrenal glands is simple. These remedies and treatments also help to improve general body functioning and treat several underlying conditions.
1. Avoid Sugary Foods
To recover from adrenal fatigue, your diet plays a huge role. This essentially means that there are some foods you must start eating to boost adrenal functioning and help regain your adrenal energy.
It also implies that there are several hard to digest foods that you must get rid of, including harmful chemicals and toxins in the environment. This is to remove anything that strains your adrenals.
Sugary foods to remove from your diet include:
- Caffeine: This is necessary because it messes up your sleep cycle, making it hard for adrenals to recover. If you have to drink coffee or any caffeinated food, have a small amount before noon.
- Carbohydrates: Although not all carbohydrate is terrible for you, they cause inflammation that is problematic when experiencing adrenal fatigue. While feeling fatigued, many people crave carbohydrate foods as it offers momentary satisfaction. However, it only puts more strain on the adrenal gland. So, if you feel fatigued often, stop eating gluten or starchy foods a while to allow your cortisol level to regulate itself.
- Sugar & Sweeteners: This includes foods like artificial sweeteners and high-fructose corn syrup. You should also avoid sugary foods, sweets, cereals, candy, etc. Bearing in mind that many bread brands, condiments, and dressings have sugar as an additive, try to avoid as much extra sugar as you can. Instead, use raw honey or stevia as a healthier alternative.
2. Reduce The Consumption of Processed and Microwaved Foods
Microwaved foods are dangerous for health. Most of them are over-processed and contain too many preservatives and fillers that are not easily digested by the body, wearing out the body’s energy and digestion cycle.
So, always ensure that you go for healthy, wholesome foods in the grocery store, or cook your food as many times as possible.
Also, avoid the following foods:
- Processed Meat: Overconsumption of protein stresses your hormones. It also contains added hormone while low in nutritional value, which tampers with your proper body functioning. Avoid over-processed meats, especially red meats like steak and beef. Instead, go for adrenal supporting meats like free-range chicken or turkey, grass-fed beef and reduce consumption of meats heavy in protein.
- Hydrogenated Oil: Vegetable oils such as canola, soybean, and corn oil are incredibly inflammatory and can cause adrenal inflammation. So, when choosing oils to use, go for the ones that contain good fat such as organic butter, olive oil, coconut oil, or ghee.
3. Eat Nutrient-Dense Foods
After removing the foods mentioned above from your diet, you need to incorporate foods that are full of nutrition, easy to digest and possess healing qualities.
Some of these foods are:
- Avocado and other healthy fats
- Bone broth
- Celtic or Himalayan sea salt
- Cordyceps medicinal mushrooms and Chaga
- Cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, etc
- Fatty fish like wild-caught salmon
- Fermented foods that are full of probiotics
- Free-range turkey and chicken
- Kelp and seaweed
- Nuts, including almond and walnut
- Nutritious seeds such as chia seed, flax, and pumpkin.
These foods are great for tackling adrenal fatigue as they are full of much-needed nutrients, low in sugar, and contain healthy fat and fiber.
Another thing to do is to drink enough water, at least 8 cups daily. This is because the body needs water to function correctly. Drinking water also provides the energy to do work.
4. Reduce Stress
Another important way to get rid of adrenal fatigue effectively is to listen to your mind and body whenever they indicate that you need to slow down. Essentially, pay attention to your body so that you know when to stop and rest.
- Sleep every day for 8-10 hours at night.
- As much as possible, rest as soon as you feel tired.
- Have a regular sleep pattern, and it is best if you are sleeping before 10 pm.
- Do something fun daily and laughs as much as possible.
- Reduce work when possible.
- Have a regular food cycle.
- Do exercises; moderate moves like walking or life-improving moves like yoga is excellent! If you feel tired afterward, walk around until your adrenals are healed.
- Take time for yourself to do something relaxing.
- Avoid negativity and people associated with such. Choose to surround yourself with positive people.
- Seek counsel and support if you are going through a traumatic experience.
- Be kind to yourself. Avoid speaking negative words over yourself and others. Stay positive. Scientific studies prove that it is positive to replace pathological worry by practicing positive self-talk; that is verbally affirming positive words amid stressful situations.
5. Take More Vitamins and Minerals
Wellness experts suggest that to combat adrenal fatigue; there is a need to supplement your diet by taking vitamin and mineral supplements to this effect.
- B-Complex Range of Vitamins: Studies have shown that a deficiency in the supply of the amount of vitamin B12 that the body needs is associated with adrenal cortex stress in some animals. Also, Vitamin B15 deficiency is common in people with adrenal fatigue. It is especially true if you are reducing or removing meat from your diet. It, therefore, means that you need to up your intake of B-Complex vitamin supplements.
- Vitamin C: Also known as “stress busters,” vitamin C has been observed to reduce the effect of stress on people. It also reduces the length of time needed to make a comeback after a stress episode.
- Vitamin D: Apart from maintaining homeostasis between phosphorus and magnesium in the body, vitamin D also supports the development of strong bones while improving other conditions like adrenal fatigue, disease, or dysfunction.
6. Use Herbal Supplements
Natural wellness practitioners prescribe certain herbs for reducing adrenal stress. Also, you can use some spices and essential oils to achieve an active and vibrant life.
These herbs include:
- Licorice Root: This spice is found in extract form; however, it is best to avoid taking DGL licorice as it has been linked to some side effects. It increases the amount of DHEA in the body. Licorice root should not be taken for more than four weeks consecutively. Also ensure that you monitor blood pressure, as levels can increase in some patients. Pregnant women and people suffering from heart, liver, or kidney problems should avoid taking it altogether.
- Adaptogenic Herbs: This includes ashwagandha, Rhodiola Rosea, Schisandra, and holy basil.
Studies show that adaptogenic herbs aid in reducing cortisol levels and reconciles stress responses in the body. Also, using them in preparing food reduces strain on your adrenal glands.
- Fish oil (EPA/DHA): Using fish oil or algal oil for vegans comes with several benefits. These include offsetting several symptoms caused by adrenal fatigue and complications. These conditions include skin issues, mental dysfunction, immune system malfunction, diabetes, rapid weight gain, depression, and anxiety.
- Lavender Oil: Several human and animal studies have shown that using lavender essential oil has a calming effect on the body, which reduces stress. It also posits that it may reduce high cortisol levels when inhaled.
If these symptoms extend for an extended period or you notice issues like darkened skin patches, make sure to visit a medical practitioner. Also, if you experience continued feeling of tiredness, weakness, or depression, visit a doctor.