Very few people visit their doctor because they believe they have adrenal fatigue. Some people who experience unexplained tiredness and lethargy believe it is the result of an under-active thyroid, or a hormone imbalance. Many conventional doctors do not recognize adrenal fatigue as a proven medical condition and perform no testing on the glands, so adrenal fatigue is rarely diagnosed.
I recently ordered a hormone test kit from John Lee's website, in an effort to figure out some health issues I was having. I included cortisol levels in the kit, because I am a type-A person and figured my cortisol levels were high and perhaps that contributed to the issues. Surprisingly, my cortisol levels were low at all 4 times of the day tested. A good doctor I showed the results to said "You have adrenal fatigue" and recommended an adaptogen called Adreno-Mend. As a retired RN, I felt a bit stupid and in an attempt to educate myself I ordered this book. I had no frame of reference for adrenal fatigue and this book provides an excellent explanation, as well as a framework to overcome the life style choices that have contributed to your adrenal fatigue. The endocrine system is so complicated, I don't pretend to understand it all, but rest assured, if one thing is out off order, it affects all your other hormones so they cannot function optimally. That includes all your glands regulating metabolism, digestion, immunity, quality of sleep, etc. I'm sure in our busy culture there are millions of people who suffer needlessly because they are unaware and they have a doctor who is not tuned in to all this. I had enough insight to order the test kit, maybe because I'm a nurse, maybe God steered me there. Once I had the results, I made an appointment with my family doctor (who I like a lot), to discuss it with him. He looked at the report and said "This is not mainstream medicine; you don't need hormone replacement; this is a natural part of aging." So, even if you go to a board certified internist who you like, you can't depend on them to be enlightened and pro-active on your behalf. Cortisol is a hormone that regulates many aspects of our health and/or illness so it is beyond me how it is not "mainstream medicine"; this author even states that many people who come to physicians with these symptoms of stress, anxiety, inability to sleep, etc, are given anti-depressants or sleeping pills or told to seek pyschiatric care. He makes the point: You are not crazy, there is a physical cause for what is happening and you can have understanding and some control over your symptoms.
Although a concept that is sometimes uncomfortable and foreign to traditional medical styles of thinking, the need for multiple interventions is required for effective treatment of such complex illnesses like CFS and adrenal fatigue. The HPA axis works as the body’s energy and hormone regulator. An imbalance between any part of the axis can affect the entire body system and treatment for such disorders requires a well-rounded approach to restore function. Therefore, adrenal and pituitary dysfunction often require treatment with several hormones. When treatment is received, individuals with devastating syndromes like CFS, adrenal fatigue and fibromylagia can “get their lives back” despite the fact that they were previously told, “there is nothing that can be done.”
To that, all I can say is that adrenal fatigue is something I’ve seen personally. It is my opinion, through years of healthcare practice and supporting scientific evidence, that hypoadrenia is very real and associated with a number of complications. In addition, adrenal fatigue treatment is relatively non-invasive and is beneficial to your health, no matter the diagnosis. Of course, you should be under the care of a qualified medical professional, such as a functional medicine doctor, you trust and see them about any symptoms you experience (of any disease) so that they can determine appropriate treatment.
I've been disabled now for almost 10 years, but before that, I worked as an RN, BSN (with a certification in Infection Prevention) for over 30 years. I got my Bachelors in Nursing at a well-known University. Unfortunately, we, as students and as nurses, were indoctrinated with the belief that ONLY WESTERN ALLOPATHIC medicine was valid, and complementary and natural health were quacks. Some are, as well as some Western medicine doctors. It took me many many years to realize that our western medicine's practice of lab and radiological and other testings' means of diagnoses, followed by prescription medication as treatment, dictated by protocols and insurance companies, was doing more harm sometimes than good. I started believing in nutritional and natural means of helping my body heal itself was far better than medications in 2013. However, by that time, I was taking 10 prescription medications twice a day. In the beginning of 2016 I became so fatigued, I would fall back to sleep an hour after I slept 9 hours. I had SEVERE sleep apnea. I went to see an Endocrinologist, and ALL my results for Adrenal Insufficiency (Addison's Disease) were there- undetectable cortisol levels, undetectable epinephrine and norepinephrine in my 24-urine collections and blood tests. However, at the test that is called "The Gold Standard" for Addison's, my cortisol level went up 3 times the baseline after an injection of synthetic meds. So even with all these other abnormal tests and my overwhelming fatigue, I was told I didn't have Addison's and should come back for repeat tests in 6 months. If I sound angry, I am. I found an article on Wikipedia that said if your cortisol level goes up 3 times after that test, it indicates a pituitary or hypothalamus problem. The doctor "didn't think I had those issues". So, if YOU ARE LIKE ME, and you KNOW something is not right with you, and medical doctors ignore you, tell you it's all in your head, or you should just RELAX, READ THIS BOOK and others like it that deal with natural alternative healing. Use common sense in deciding what to try in helping your body recover health, but PLEASE TRY TO HELP YOURSELF and not totally rely on doctors who only give out pills, pills, and more pills. In fact, Dr. Wilson (who is NOT an MD, but is highly trained) writes a very vivid account of what western medicine has degenerated to right now. It is startling, and as an RN who worked in Quality and Risk, I know he is correct. Adrenal Fatigue is an epidemic today in the USA, where we live stressful lives and have stressful jobs. There is a test in the book that has been used to "diagnose" your tendency to have adrenal fatigue. And Dr. Wilson gives step by step actions we can take to "get our lives back", using nutrition, supplements, activities, and other natural remedies. He also tells about a simple saliva test for adrenal insufficiency or fatigue that the medical community refuses to accept. If you are sick and tired of being sick and tired, PLEASE CONSIDER buying and reading this book. If your doctor refuses to believe you are not well, help yourselves. Thank you for putting up with me if you read through this Long Review!!
Low adrenal hormone levels may also be linked to low blood sugar. Normally, cortisol works to maintain blood sugar levels throughout the day, but low cortisol levels may not be sufficient to sustain blood glucose. When blood sugar levels drop, sleep is disrupted, which can cause you to wake earlier than normal – for example, between 1-3am. Eating a small, healthy snack before bedtime may help to combat this. Choose foods that are low in sugar and high in protein and/or healthy fats in order to help stabilize blood sugar without spiking it.
The best approach is to make solid changes to your lifestyle for lasting results. Some people notice a difference in their overall well-being after just a few weeks of better foods that aid in detoxification of the body and adrenal fatigue supplements. If you aim for a balanced lifestyle with a healthy level of sleep, exercise, fun and a positive environment, then you are most likely to keep your adrenal system going strong!
Your adrenals produce your stress hormones, which are super important for your metabolism and they totally effect your thyroid so it’s key to look at these glands when you’re dealing with any sort of thyroid issue. If you’re in that amped-up mode that causes you to feel stressed all the time (and you feel like you can’t turn it off), you’re headed for some degree of Adrenal Fatigue. In this state, your cortisol is chronically elevated or it’s high when it should be low (at night). Adrenal Fatigue is when your cortisol is chronically low when it should actually be elevated. Your production of stress hormones declines and leaves you with low adrenaline and low cortisol–feeling depleted.
Methylation labs: Methylation is a massive biochemical superhighway that happens 1 billion times every second in the human body. It makes a healthy brain, gut, hormones, and detox pathways and protects your DNA. All super important stuff. Genes that make methylation happen can be mutated in some of us. This decreases methylation and can cause a variety of health issues. I had multiple methylation gene mutations, one of which is the MTHFR gene.
Adrenal fatigue is caused when the adrenal glands can no longer meet the demands made of them because they are simply over-worked. Naturally, the adrenals help the body to deal with stress by mobilizing the hormones required to keep the body functioning properly. However, when too much stress is present, whether physical, mental or emotional, the adrenal glands become over-stimulated and start to slow down – hence the term “adrenal fatigue”.
A recent review of 58 studies concluded that there is no scientific basis to associate adrenal impairment as a cause of fatigue. The authors report the studies had some limitations. The research included used many different biological markers and questionnaires to detect adrenal fatigue. For example, salivary cortisol is one of the most common ordered tests used to make a diagnosis. The cortisol level, when checked four times in a 24-hour period, was no different between fatigued and healthy patients in 61.5% of the studies. The review raises questions around what should get tested (blood, urine, and/or saliva), the best time, how often, what ranges are considered normal, and how reliable the tests are, to name a few. In summary, there is no formal criteria to define and diagnose adrenal fatigue.
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.
What's to know about pheochromocytoma? Pheochromocytoma is a rare, potentially life-threatening tumor of the gland in the body that produces adrenalin. In this article, learn about the symptoms of pheochromocytoma and their potential complications, as well as the function and anatomy of the adrenal gland. Read on to find out about outlook with the tumor. Read now
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