Adrenal burnout means that the adrenal glands are overwhelmed, which results in unbalanced hormones and low cortisol levels. If your doctor suspects adrenal fatigue, you will be sent to an endocrinologist and get tested for Addison’s or Cushing’s diseases.
Is Adrenal Fatigue a Hoax?
Adrenal fatigue is not recognized by the conventional medicine since it is not a disease for which drugs can be prescribed. It should be referred to as called hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis dysfunction, which is a way of saying that the loop between the adrenals and the brain is fried.
The adrenals are tiny glands situated atop the kidneys which produce sex hormones and cortisol. In many different ways, the HPA axis along with the adrenals control the center of the body and manage hormone levels, stress levels, metabolism, sleep, sex drive, and thyroid function. When everything is under control and functions optimally, you have stable energy during the day, sleep well, and have a good sex drive.
On the other hand, when you are chronically stressed, the cortisol levels stay high and you become depleted of the hormones needed to combat the stressor. The most common symptoms of adrenal fatigue include anxiety, brain fog, insomnia, and fatigue, all of which disrupt day-to-day activities.
When your adrenals begin to falter, you may notice:
- insomnia or waking around 4 am, unable to get to sleep
- weight gain
- digestive issues such as bloating, constipation, diarrhea
- sugar and/or salt cravings
- increased susceptibility to illness
- decreased ability to handle stress, feeling frazzled
- the “3 pm crash”
- brain fog
- PMS/hot flashes associated with menopause
- inability to focus
- low sex drive
Causes of Adrenal Fatigue
- Autoimmune diseases
- Diet (too much caffeine, refined sugars, and processed foods)
- Emotional stress
- Digestive infections and microbiome imbalance
- Lack of sleep
- Pain, chronic inflammation
How to Reverse Adrenal Burn Out
- saliva testing to determine cortisol levels
- restore circadian rhythm
- address stress
- SLEEP, at least 8 hours nightly. In bed by 10 pm.
- B vitamins
- Vitamin C and minerals
- eat in regular intervals to keep blood sugar levels stable
- eat enough calories for healing
- adaptogenic herbs
- eat hormone-building, nutrient dense foods, and good fats
- stop chugging coffee
- support digestion with probiotic foods
4 Steps to Reversing Adrenal Burn Out
The first step is saliva testing in order to determine the cortisol levels. The test itself requires four samples, allowing you to get a better picture of your cortisol rhythm. If your cortisol levels are too low in the morning, you will be tired. If they are low in the evening, you will be unable to sleep. Given that the body is synchronized with the natural rhythm of light and dark, the better you establish the rhythm, the more you will heal.
The second step includes a combination of a healing protocol with a nutrient-packed diet. Eat plenty of veggies; protein like grass fed beef, lamb, and eggs; and lots of sea salt. Eating more good fats, such as butter and olive oil is also a good idea, as well as introducing more superfoods in your diet, like organ meats, probiotic foods, and bone broth.
Add supplements to your daily regimens, such as minerals, vitamin C, adaptogenic herbs, nettles, B vitamins, nutrients like phosphatidylserine, and blood sugar support.
The last step includes restoring the natural circadian rhythm by waking up at the same time every day, eating every four hours, and going to bed by 10 pm.