Thank you for your article! I just received saliva test results showing that I have low cortisol throughout the day. I’m on a supplement plan, but I’m wondering about some of your other recommendations. What is the benefit of going to bed at 10 PM For the adrenals? If I am awake between 7 AM and 9 AM, what do you recommend for being restful for the adrenals? Thank you!!
Congenital Weak adrenals. Many children today are born with weak adrenals due to their parents’ nutritional deficiencies. This is not a genetic problem. Instead, it is due to the nutritional imbalances of the mother, in particular. These are passed through the placenta to the unborn child. For example, if the mother is zinc-deficient, as most are, the baby is born low in zinc and often high in copper, cadmium or other minerals that substitute for zinc to a degree. Fortunately, this means the problem can be corrected, though it is better to prevent it, of course. By age three or four, these children are in burnout. They are often sick, depressed and have difficulty in school. Some of these children react to the situation by becoming hyperactive, compulsive, obsessive or by developing various other behavior problems. On their hair mineral analyses, these children are often in a state of burnout at this early age, a relatively new phenomenon, in my experience. By gently rebuilding their body chemistry, however, their behavioral and other disorders generally vanish in a few months to a few years.

While adrenal fatigue may not exist, the same can’t be said for the treatments. When you’re treating a fake disease, anything goes. Everything from homeopathy to herbal remedies to hydrotherapy, to traditional Chinese medicine and vitamin supplements are advocated for treatment. The endpoints of treatment are as nonspecific as the criteria for diagnosis. Wilson, conveniently, has his own supplement programs, and there’s no shortage of solutions out there.

The nervous system is also a delicate balance- where we need to keep the sympathetic “fight or flight” nervous system in check with our parasympathetic “rest and digest” nervous system. If we live life as a constant race filled speeding through daily activities, functions and appointments then we are putting our entire health and body systems at risk. Stress can create damage to our internal health- not just a headache! We can improve our response to stressful situations as well as reduce the stress triggers in our life. Often we need more time spent in the “rest and digest” nervous systems and less time in the “fight or flight” nervous system. More is not better!


This book is a good place to start in getting your life back in balance in go-go world that is pushing us to extreme levels of stress everyday. It has helpful, specific steps one can take but it needs a bit of help in the area of achieving better sleep. Poor sleep exacerbates all the problems of a 21st century life and an over-stressed life leads to poor sleep. "Catch 22". Gradual depletion is an easy thing to ignore until suddenly we are on empty. Don't ignore this information.
At LifeWorks Wellness Center, when the patient has been diagnosed with adrenal fatigue, the practitioner will describe the adrenal fatigue treatment options available. These may include identification of specific adrenal support needed for the patient, as well as the correction of other health factors which put additional demands on the adrenals. The causes, and severity, of adrenal fatigue vary from person to person. For this reason, all adrenal gland treatment programs are individualized based on what is needed.
The adrenal glands sit over the kidneys, where they play a significant role in the body, secreting more than 50 hormones necessary for life, including epinephrine (adrenaline), cortisol, dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), progesterone and testosterone. Since they produce so many essential hormones, the adrenal glands are responsible for many of the functions we need to stay alive and healthy, including:
Congenital Weak adrenals. Many children today are born with weak adrenals due to their parents’ nutritional deficiencies. This is not a genetic problem. Instead, it is due to the nutritional imbalances of the mother, in particular. These are passed through the placenta to the unborn child. For example, if the mother is zinc-deficient, as most are, the baby is born low in zinc and often high in copper, cadmium or other minerals that substitute for zinc to a degree. Fortunately, this means the problem can be corrected, though it is better to prevent it, of course. By age three or four, these children are in burnout. They are often sick, depressed and have difficulty in school. Some of these children react to the situation by becoming hyperactive, compulsive, obsessive or by developing various other behavior problems. On their hair mineral analyses, these children are often in a state of burnout at this early age, a relatively new phenomenon, in my experience. By gently rebuilding their body chemistry, however, their behavioral and other disorders generally vanish in a few months to a few years.
I found Dr. Lam's book overall more comprehensive in addressing all aspects of a person's life in recovering from adrenal fatigue syndrome. I have only been using Dr. Wilson's adrenal protocol for 36 days. Dr. Wilson's web site says it could take up to three months to see a difference, or even two years, depending on the state of the person's health. I am very encouraged in how much better I feel after 36 days.
Adrenal fatigue shouldn’t be confused with adrenal insufficiency, a legitimate medical condition that can be diagnosed with laboratory tests and has a defined symptomatology. Addison’s disease causes primary adrenal insufficiency and usually has an autoimmune cause, with symptoms appearing when most of the adrenal cortex has been destroyed. Secondary adrenal insufficiency is cause by pituitary disorder that gives insufficient hormonal stimulation to the adrenals. Some liken adrenal fatigue to a milder form of adrenal insufficiency — but there’s no underlying pathology that has been associated with adrenal fatigue.
This extends to more than just lifestyle and dietary choices. Patients also need to identify and eliminate the sources of stress in their lives. This can often be difficult, but it is a necessary part of restoring their health. Unhealthy relationships, stressful jobs, family quarrels, money worries – these all need to be eliminated somehow. Often a patient will feel as though a huge weight has been lifted off their shoulders when these issues are fixed. As you would expect, that feeling also signifies a great deal of stress being taken off their adrenal glands and HPA axis too.
If you truly have adrenal fatigue syndrome your most definitely going to suffering from some other obvious condition as well. Failure of the adrenal glands To work properly would cause serious side effects in your body that you would notice far sooner then you would notice this so called syndrome. All the symptoms mentioned above can signify multiple different illnesses that are more likely for you to have then an adrenal problem, such as depression for instance or just being tired. Adrenal fatigue syndrome is a fad illness, if you go to any doctor saying you think you have it they will laugh at you. I’ve seen it happen. Try taking a nap and taking care of yourself.
Ive been to the doctor about my depression but i feel as if the doctor doesnt listen to me why I tell her I am tired ALL the time. i feel like im running a marathon just to get through the day. ive been eating healthier and going to the gym 2 to 3 days a week. nothing is helping . Lost 1 pound 🙁 im a horriible napper (i wake up in a bad mood) so i try not to nap . What should my next step be ? im stuck in this rut for now.
The problem starts when cortisol stays high when it shouldn’t, often due to chronic stress. The result can be adrenal fatigue, which is not actually an adrenal problem but rather a brain problem. Typically, adrenal fatigue is when the brain-adrenal (HPA) axis isn’t working, so that the brain is not communicating appropriately with the adrenal glands to regulate cortisol. Symptoms include:
Dr. Wilson describes the unique progression of adrenal fatigue throughout the day as follows: you wake up and are unable to function without a significant amount of caffeine, finally feel a boost of energy during the early part of the day, then your energy levels crash around 2 p.m., rise around 6 p.m., fall again around 9 p.m. and then finally peak again at 11 in the evening. (3)
The idea underlying the condition is that constant stress puts an undue burden on the adrenal glands to produce hormones — especially cortisol — and the glands burn out. The lack of adrenal hormones leads to a host of generalized symptoms, including tiredness, trouble falling asleep or waking up, and a need for stimulants like caffeine to get through the day. With the fast-paced demands of modern life making many people feel consistently stressed out and sleep-deprived, it’s easy to understand the appeal of a diagnosis that promises an explanation — and treatment to counteract their feelings of fatigue.
This treatment plan comes in several downloadable ebooks (in PDF format), audio files, and a video course. Please note that no physical product will be shipped to you. It is fully compatible with PCs, Macs, iPads, Android tablets and many other computers and mobile devices. If you have any problems downloading the treatment plan, just contact us here and we will be happy to help you.

In all the articles I’ve read concerning adrenal fatigue and the causes, (and yours was good, by the way) I’ve never seen it addressed when one has been on high doses of prednisone for several months. This may not fall under adrenal fatigue because the adrenal has literally been completely shut down until the dosage falls under 7 or so mgs. I wonder at what point the adrenal will atrophy to the point it never starts back up. The first time I went off prednisone after having been on it for a year and a half, it took a year before I could feel back to normal and start losing the 58 pounds I had gained during that time. I had to go back on it last September and just got off again last month. Just wondering and would love to hear what someone (other than a traditional MD) has to say. (Can’t bash prednisone, don’t ‘cha know, cause it’s a “wonder drug”!)

While this may be discouraging to some, one issue I have with this assessment is that the main issue seemed to be study design, rather than hard results. The failure of scientists to conduct adequate tests does not immediately equate to the falsity of adrenal fatigue as a whole. In addition, a diagnosis for this condition is difficult because these cortisol levels fall in what conventional medicine would call “inside the normal range,” although the symptoms are clear to those suffering from the condition. Lastly, treatment for adrenal fatigue consists mainly of diet and lifestyle adjustments, which traditional doctors do not see as legitimate medicine. (That’s okay; we know that food is medicine, no matter how often the medical community fails to recognize this fact.)
Until the adrenal fatigue controversy is teased out, focus on engaging in healthy habits like seeing your doctor for regular checkups, getting enough sleep, avoiding or moderating caffeine intake, and eating a nutritious diet. Some people opt for a low-glycemic diet (for its anti-inflammatory effect), but talk with your doctor first before embarking on this.
Not included in the above piece by Dr Northrup about adrenal exhaustion is information about the affects of sustained stress on the adrenals leading to elevated aldosterone production. With work/life stress, extreme exercise and chronic dehydration (many people don’t get enough fluids) the adrenals will produce elevated levels of the hormone aldosterone in order to try to maintain a type of homeostasis. Aldosterone will push potassium, zinc and magnesium out of the body resulting in impaired immune function, poor digestion, compromised liver function, poorer iron absorption, and increased risks for oxidative stress.
Now, when your cortisol gets too high, your pituitary and hypothalamus slow down and so they don’t let go of any stress hormones and your thyroid begins to slow down. Now your thyroid stops producing as much thyroid hormone, which causes your metabolism to slow down and you all of a sudden start gaining weight, even though you haven’t changed anything about what you eat or workout. You start to feel fatigued, foggy and unmotivated. Also, when your stress is high, you convert more T3 into Part III (read Part III to learn more about Reverse T3), which slows things down and halts your metabolism even more.
The adrenal glands sit over the kidneys, where they play a significant role in the body, secreting more than 50 hormones necessary for life, including epinephrine (adrenaline), cortisol, dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), progesterone and testosterone. Since they produce so many essential hormones, the adrenal glands are responsible for many of the functions we need to stay alive and healthy, including:
If the individual has reached Stage 3 Adrenal Fatigue, treatment will likely take much longer. At these stages both the adrenal glands and the rest of the endocrine system are beginning to get severely fatigued, and production of at least a few of our hormones has started to flag. The diurnal cortisol cycle has begun to be disrupted. To rebuild adrenal strength requires lifestyle changes, a nutritious diet and proper supplementation. This takes some time, and you can anticipate the process taking at least 6 months.
Adrenal Fatigue Syndrome - Reclaim Your Energy and Vitality with Clinically Proven Natural Programs, by Dr. Michael Lam, is a reference guide that packs virtually every bit of information you ever wanted to know about adrenal fatigue into its massive 500-page frame. Dr. Lam has been a pioneer in the study of adrenal-related issues, and personally provides help for millions on his own website, drlam.com.
The adrenal glands, which sit on top of your kidneys like little kidney baseball caps, release several important hormones, one of which is cortisol. You've probably heard about cortisol before since it's your major stress hormone. Cortisol is supposed to be higher in the morning when you wake up and slowly go down throughout the day so that you can sleep well. It's not necessarily a bad guy—it actually helps regulate your blood sugar and pressure—but you want cortisol to be in balance. Not too high and not too low.
Addisonian crisis: Causes, symptoms, and treatment An Addisonian crisis can cause weakness, nausea, fever, and even death. It is caused by a dramatic drop in cortisol levels. Cortisol helps regulate blood sugar levels and blood pressure, so a shortage can be dangerous. Read on to learn more about this condition caused by an adrenal gland failure. Read now
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