Adrenal insufficiency is a chronic disease and many people are affected by adrenal fatigue. To receive a diagnosis like this, you must have lost 90% of your adrenal gland function, but you may have adrenal problems without this diagnosis.
Between optimal health and chronic disease is mentioned adrenal fatigue, a mild form of adrenal insufficiency that occurs when the adrenal glands are overworked.
The main role of the adrenal glands is to produce and regulate the stress hormone – cortisol. The adrenal glands also produce the hormones estrogen and progesterone and produce neurotransmitters such as adrenaline (epinephrine), norepinephrine and dopamine.
These hormones with neurotransmitters regulate together metabolism and communicate with other organs, such as the brain, kidneys and reproductive system. However, chronic stress can suppress the adrenal glands, causing them to release insufficient amounts of these necessary hormones.
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- lack of sleep
- diet low in nutrients (processed, junk food)
- stimulants (caffeine, sugar)
- overloaded work schedule
- emotional trauma (unhealthy relationships, death of a loved one)
- lack of fun and emotion
We live in a very stressful world. We have 80 hours of work, we sacrifice our hours of sleep, we drink two cups of coffee to stay awake during the day, we consume sugary products for more energy, and these habits affect us emotionally, mentally, physically, and spiritually.
When we engage in stressful activities, the body enters a “fight” or “run” mode, and we believe we need a surge of energy to survive. The stress hormone cortisol is released in our body. Because its function is to give you a burst of energy, cortisol raises blood sugar, suppresses the immune system to save energy and begins to store protein and carbohydrates. Over time, high levels of cortisol can lead to insulin resistance and weaken the immune system.
How to treat adrenal fatigue:
It is important to remember that the adrenal glands are not the cause. The best way to treat adrenal fatigue is to treat the cause: stress. If you suffer from adrenal fatigue, the most important thing you can do is establish a routine. Below you can find some of my suggestions for establishing the routine.
- Go to bed at the same time every night (preferably before 10 pm) and sleep 8 hours.
- Learn to say no when you reach the limit.
- Do something relaxing every day (hot bath, walk in the park, yoga, meditation, acupuncture, etc.).
- Don’t over-demand yourself. If you are tired after training, relax.
- Eat a high-protein breakfast before 10 am.
- Eat fruits with a source of protein (nuts or nut butter).
- Avoid alcohol, sugar, gluten and dairy products (toxic and inflammatory foods).
- Also consider supplements (adaptogenic plants, B vitamins).
Systemic enzymes are key to a healthy lifestyle. Processed foods, exposure to environmental pollution and overall illness that occur during one’s lifespan can cause the body to use up these enzymes, forcing it to work harder.
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