Particular emphasis is given to chronic stress, and its long-term, cyclical effect on fatigue. Oxygen, free radical damage to cells, and cortisol’s importance are also examined. And all of that is before the serious discussion about adrenal fatigue begins! That discussion involves a close look at adrenal fatigue, its causes, symptoms, and diagnosis.
The book includes a number of questionnaires – self-evaluations that can help you determine the nature of your exhaustion – as well as treatment protocols and other sound advice that can help you to nurse yourself back to health. Many have compared Simpson’s approach to this ailment to that advocated by Dr. James Wilson in his seminal work on adrenal fatigue, Adrenal Fatigue: the 21st Century Stress Syndrome. For many patients, however, her work may be even more accessible, as it is 200 pages shorter than that important treatise. That fact - along with its clear and understandable approach to the subject - makes it a nice addition to any reader’s collection of fatigue recovery books.
This books needs a good editor! I read it cover to cover, but I recommend scanning the table of contents and index and jumping around based on interest. I'm grateful to my copy's previous owner, as the best bits are already highlighted. A lot of the material is over my head and I still can't precisely describe adrenal fatigue, but I understand that we all experience adrenal fatigue at some point. What's important is how we recover from stressful situations, be it from predator attacks (ancestral ...more
We did not start her on any kind of hormone replacement. In some cases hormone therapy can be helpful, and if someone has an autoimmune disease called Addison's, it can be necessary. But for most people who live their way into stage 1, 2 or 3 adrenal fatigue, it's just a matter of living their way right back out of it and into balance with their bodies.
Any excessive stress can deplete the adrenals, especially when weakened by poor nutrition. Working too much or emotional stress are two common causes. Excessive stimulation, especially for children, is another cause. Fast-paced, high-stress, fear-based lifestyles are a sure prescription for adrenal burnout. Other stressors in cities are noise and electromagnetic pollution. Cell phones, microwave towers and appliances like televisions, microwave ovens and computers give off strong electrical fields.
The ACTH has the effect of stimulating your adrenal hormone output, just like it would if you were placed in a stressful situation. This test allows you to see the response of your adrenals to stress. If your cortisol exhibits a healthy spike higher (at least double in a blood test), your adrenals are probably in reasonably good shape. If the spike in cortisol is not so large, this suggests adrenal insufficiency.
Hello, at Age 51, 5’6″, Nothing has changed, i am still 165 to 170 depending on the Decision of GOD knows what, i went down to 163 last June after climbing to 170 and was ecstatic, no change in diet, i cannot exercise due to the Fibromyalgia (long story) but i am the busiest person i know, i hardly EVER sit down. My period was 2 months late in June of 2015, then it started, and my weight dropped 7 pounds in 5 days ! (from 170 to 163 in June 2015) i did nothing diff, then it climbed back up , doing nothing different, only my period was late again, for another 2 months.
Adrenal fatigue is a prototype fake disease. Defining a cluster of symptoms in general terms is the first mistake. Symptoms need to be collated in a rational way to understand the parameters of the disorder. With adrenal fatigue, there’s no objective operational description, nor is there a validated symptom score, as the systematic review notes. Using a vague list of symptoms to identify patients is the second mistake. While laboratory tests are advertised for identifying adrenal fatigue, there’s no persuasive data to suggest that any testing used by naturopaths is valid in any way.
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.
For example, if an individual suffering from Adrenal Fatigue continues to eat junk food, declines to exercise properly (or over-exercises) and does not take the appropriate supplements, his treatment will inevitably require more time. On the other hand, an individual who follows all the recommendations of his healthcare professional can expect a much faster and better outcome.
Unlike other endocrine disorders that are caused by physical damage to parts of the adrenal glands, hypoadrenia is seen by many in the natural health world as a “middle ground” syndrome with simple and easy-to-implement solutions. Currently, no official diagnosis exists for adrenal fatigue and people are either considered to have normal endocrine function or total endocrine failure, like that seen in Cushing’s syndrome or adrenal insufficiency/Addison’s disease. Some postulate that this occurred in the 1950s when doctors over-prescribed adrenal steroids and saw dire consequences, leading to an overcorrection and generalization of endocrine issues. (2)
Methylation labs: Methylation is a collection of biochemical actions in the body that happen 1 billion times every second. Healthy methylation helps to maintain a healthy brain, gut, hormones, and detox pathways, and also protects your DNA. However, some of us have genetic mutations that impair the methylation process. I have multiple methylation gene mutations, one of which is the MTHFR gene mutation, making me less able to absorb certain essential vitamins. This was useful information because I was then better able to supplement to make up for my nutritional deficiencies.
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.)

I started taking Cortex (not Cortrex) an hour before each of my low cortisol times and it has really helped. I have had many of your same symptoms. I take two at 6:00 am and then three other times during the day. I am not a doctor so you may want to check with someone first. The Cortrex can make your heart race as it has adrenaline in it. Hope this helps!

Adrenal Fatigue: the 21st Century Stress Syndrome is a treasure trove of information and help for everyone who regularly experiences any of the above, or the many other signs of stress described in the book. Dr. Wilson explains that healthy functioning of your adrenal glands is essential to virtually all aspects of your health as well as to your ability to handle stress. For this reason, stress and adrenal function often also play a role in many health conditions, such as frequent infections, chemical sensitivities, allergies, autoimmune diseases like fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis, menopause and PMS, thyroid function imbalances, chronic fatigue syndrome, low libido, chronic anxiety, and mild depression. All of these problems and more may be aggravated by the effects stress can have on your adrenal glands.
I have a question. I experienced quite severe adrenal weakness symptoms after gradually increasing DHEA until I was taking 30 mg. a day. I couldn’t even exercise like I always have . I know now that I should have not taken it as I have a history of low blood sugar. I stopped the DHEA entirely and started takiing licorice root caps, 3 caps 3x a day with meals. I feel so much better! My blood pressure was not too low when I started, 120 over 72, but yesterday, it was 137 over 92 with a resting pulse of 66. I am afraid to cut out the licorice, because every time I cut it out entirely in the past, I don’t feel well. Even though I also take a good Adrenal glandular too. Maybe if I cut it down to 2 caps 2 times a day? i wonder if that would lower my blood pressure enough. Btw, I am a 62 year old female in good health otherwise and on no meds.
What differentiates adrenal insufficiency from adrenal fatigue? More often than not, adrenal fatigue is modeled by an overabundance of cortisol, often at the “wrong” times, while adrenal insufficiency is a consistent inability to produce cortisol. They are related, though — many natural medicine practitioners, such as myself, see adrenal fatigue as a precursor to adrenal insufficiency. In fact, a description of adrenal insufficiency from the Cleveland Clinic states that “its early clinical presentation is most commonly vague and undefined, requiring a high index of suspicion.” (41)
Thank you for the wealth of knowledge you share in your blogs and follow-up comments. What stage of adrenal/HPA-axis dysregulation would you consider a patient with the following results? Symptoms are consistent with abnormal cortisol levels and hypothyroidism; current treatment protocol from primary includes Armour thyroid 30mg. Could Hashimoto’s (or autoimmunity) be a possible cause? Or are lifestyle factors (sleep, glucose regulation and diet, stress, etc.) more likely for the following patterns?
In The Adrenal Fatigue Solution, we have included everything you need to know about diet, stress management, exercise, supplementation, hormone replacement and much more. It gives you all the tools you need to get the right tests, identify what might be causing your fatigue, and begin restoring your energy levels one step at a time. You will also learn how to prevent your Adrenal Fatigue from reoccuring. Full recovery may take some time, but once you start on the right path you should begin to see your energy levels improving within weeks.
I have been suffering since two years, due to I guess too much exercise and less carbs. I have the following symptoms, bad sleep, dehydrated and no thirst feeling, thinning hair, cold feet, dandruff, low libido, very bad digestive system almost always bloated, but the most important thing is, there is liquid coming out of my anus. In short, I feel extremely bad during the day.
Deficiencies in hormones like cortisol, DHEA, aldosterone, pregnenolone, estradiol, progesterone, testosterone and growth hormone are often missed or poorly treated because doctors have come to rely on standard blood tests that require an intact pituitary and hypothalamus for diagnosis and dosing of hormone levels. There is, however, severe hypothalamic and pituitary dysfunction with CFS, making the standard blood tests inadequate. Evaluating hormone function, not just hormone levels, can help diagnose CFS and adrenal fatigue; and when properly treated and balanced, tremendous results can be achieved.

Spending more time outside in the sun also helps boost levels of vitamin D, because your body manufactures this important vitamin/hormone when it senses sun on your skin. Vitamin D, is responsible for regulating over 200 genetic pathways, so make sure your levels are high enough. I recommend an optimal range of around 60 to 80 ng/ml. Ask your doctor about a simple blood test to help you keep track.
We tested her cortisol levels using a saliva test, and found that not only did she have the symptoms of stage 3 adrenal fatigue, the test confirmed it. Instead of following a curve that starts high on waking in the morning and trends down to its lowest point at night, her cortisol curve was a flat line. Her DHEA, another adrenal hormone, was also low, as were her free T3 — the active thyroid hormone — and her levels of B12, vitamin D, zinc, magnesium and selenium.
Lately I’ve noticed that I’m dragging in the afternoon and have less patience with the potami. Though in the past I would have beat myself up for my “bad attitude” or tried to give myself a pep talk to snap out of it, this time I’m taking a different approach. I’m acknowledging that my adrenals are tired, and I’m taking steps to give them the rest they need.
This book was a huge step in the right direction for me. I'm so glad I found it. For me, one of the best parts of the book was that I walked away more in-tune with my body and feelings ... giving myself permission to slow-down and avoid anything and everyone who unnecessarily drained my energy. As of today, I would suggest Nutritional Balancing with Dr. Larry Wilson to correct Adrenal Fatigue. I discovered I actually had something called 4-lows through the use of Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis. .. ...more
We did not start her on any kind of hormone replacement. In some cases hormone therapy can be helpful, and if someone has an autoimmune disease called Addison's, it can be necessary. But for most people who live their way into stage 1, 2 or 3 adrenal fatigue, it's just a matter of living their way right back out of it and into balance with their bodies.
To assess adrenal function, we conduct a one-hour ACTH stimulation test, which is very safe and reliable. We also look for thyroid issues and diabetes. After checking for a variety of endocrine disorders using testing and symptom assessment, we start working with a multidisciplinary team of doctors to figure out the root cause of the patient’s problem.
Here’s another important thing to know about cortisol testing. Taking a single measurement, or even a 24-hour average, is not enough. The best cortisol tests take 4 individual samples at various points of the day and then map your cortisol levels over the course of a 24 hour cycle. Our cortisol levels vary dramatically, starting high when we wake up and then tapering off until they reach their lowest point late at night. This usually represents something like an 80% drop, which is perfectly normal. Your health care professional needs to see not just your average cortisol level, but also the size of the morning spike and how sharply it drops off afterwards.
I don’t know someone out there, I’m on the east coast. However have you heard of a company called Inspired Nutrition. I’ve used the Ultimate Monolaurin, Skin defense, Silver Skin and C-A-Y defence and they worked great for my needs. The Ultimate Monolaurin is great product that benefits so many disorders and illnesses. Research Monolaurin on the Internet to see all that it can help. It works really well. It might be a great additive to what your taking. Also email me privately, my sister inlaw is in Seattle and I have a friend who is a chiropractor in CA, they might know of someone your way. Lcole0712@gmail.com. send me exactly where you are, what your looking for and what’s going on and I will run it by both of them. I wish you the best in you journey to Great Health! Lorena
Conventional medicine will detect only the extremes of these conditions, when damage to the adrenals has already occurred (Cushing’s disease and Addison’s disease). Within those extremes, you can feel miserable and still be told your cortisol levels are normal. But by responding to early-stage symptoms of adrenal fatigue, we can reverse the developing dysfunction.
Standard doctors often dismiss cortisol test results because they fall “within the normal range” of cortisol. But feeling like crap isn’t normal, and you shouldn’t accept it. It’s similar with testosterone: 300 ng/dL is “within the normal range,” and so is 900 ng/dL. But if you triple your testosterone levels, I promise you’ll feel a lot different.
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