Is Adrenal Fatigue Driving Your Burnout?

Is Adrenal Fatigue Driving Your Burnout?

Feb 21, 2023

We’ve all been there – burning the candle at both ends, juggling work, family, and social life, and sacrificing sleep to meet the never-ending demands of our busy lives.

But have you ever wondered why some people seem to thrive under pressure while others feel completely burnt out?

The answer may lie in our adrenal glands, which play a crucial role in regulating our body’s response to stress.

Adrenal fatigue is a term used to describe a collection of symptoms that occur when the adrenal glands are unable to cope with the demands of chronic stress. Although it’s not a recognized medical condition, the symptoms and effects of adrenal fatigue can truly turn your life upside down.

WHAT CAUSES ADRENAL FATIGUE?

Adrenal glands are small, triangular-shaped organs located on top of the kidneys. These glands are responsible for producing a variety of stress hormones, including cortisol, adrenaline, and aldosterone. Collectively, these hormones manage several roles among themselves.

 Cortisol is a hormone that controls the metabolism of fats, proteins, and carbs. It also helps regulate blood pressure, decreases inflammation, and controls our sleep/wake cycle. Cortisol prepares our body for the fight or flight response under a stressful event and pumps us with the necessary energy to deal with it.

 Adrenaline signals an increase in heart rate, pumps more blood to the muscles and brain, boosts glucose metabolism, and increases blood pressure as a stress response.

 Aldosterone supports blood pH levels by regulating the levels of electrolytes in the bloodstream.

All these hormones are released as part of our body’s fight or flight mechanism in a stressful situation. While this is a natural mechanism, our body doesn’t know the difference between being faced with a wild bear and having our computer break down. It produces the same steps in both cases, pumping high levels of stress hormones into your bloodstream even in not-so-serious stressful situations.

Over time, your adrenal glands are overworked and this is when you’ll begin to feel the symptoms of adrenal fatigue.

Some triggers of this condition can be:

– You are working out too much, too hard; or you have unidentified environmental sensitivities

– You are emotionally burdened to a point where you feel pushing yourself to over-achieve, have unresolved trauma, or are in a difficult situation in your personal life

– You live near a factory or are exposed to high levels of pollution, radiation, and plastic; or are taking heavy doses of medication such as chemotherapy

– You have unaddressed gut issues such as IBS, leaky gut; or your diet heavily comprises of processed foods and caffeine

– You have an extremely high-stress job that is demanding and all-consuming

SYMPTOMS OF ADRENAL FATIGUE:

  • Feeling sluggish and wired
  • Difficulty falling asleep or getting out of bed in the morning
  • Dips and troughs of energy all day long
  • Craving for salty or sweet foods
  • Weight gain that you can’t seem to shake off
  • Difficulty handling stress
  • Irritability or mood swings
  • Brain fog or difficulty concentrating
  • Decreased libido
  • Muscle weakness
  • Joint pain, bloating in hands and feet

TREATING ADRENAL FATIGUE WITH FUNCTIONAL MEDICINE

Functional medicine takes a holistic approach to health and wellness, focusing on the root cause of disease rather than just treating the symptoms. When it comes to adrenal fatigue, long-term lifestyle, diet, and mindset changes can play a crucial role in restoring balance to the adrenal glands and improving overall health and well-being.

  1. Managing Stress

One of the most important aspects of treating adrenal fatigue is managing stress. Research studies have shown that mindfulness meditation can help reduce cortisol levels and improve symptoms of stress-related disorders. Similarly, regular exercise has been shown to improve mood and reduce symptoms of anxiety and depression.

  1. Improving Sleep Quality

Sleep is crucial for overall health and well-being, and it’s especially important for people with adrenal fatigue. Getting 7-8 hours of restful sleep each night can help reduce cortisol levels and improve symptoms of fatigue and brain fog.

Some strategies for improving sleep quality include establishing a regular sleep schedule, creating a calming sleep environment, avoiding caffeine and alcohol in the evening, and limiting screen time before bed.

  1. Eating a Nutrient-Dense Diet

Diet plays a crucial role in adrenal health, and it’s important to eat a nutrient-dense diet that supports the adrenal glands. Switch to savory breakfasts that include a healthy portion of fats, complex carbs, fiber, and protein. Minimise sugary foods and cut down on caffeine. Also, remove foods that cause sensitivity and upheaval in your gut. This may include wheat, soy, corn, or dairy depending on your tolerance.

  1. Choose Smart Workouts

If you are indulging in HIIT workouts coz your favorite Instagram influencer is all about it, then you’re most likely driving your adrenal glands toward fatigue. Choose low-impact workouts such as walking, pilates, yoga, or lifting weights to drive that fat burn. Aim to work out 3-5 times a week without over-taxing yourself.

  1. Identify the Root Cause of your Adrenal Fatigue

Going behind the scenes to understand what is driving your adrenal fatigue is key to resolving it for good. This may be a sour relationship, a difficult job, overtraining, generational trauma, metabolic syndrome, or anything under the sun. Work with us to identify the root cause and put the puzzle together.

Adrenal fatigue may not receive the importance it needs from conventional medicine, but the realities of patients seeking functional medicine support paint a different picture. At MyPureMD, we understand that your symptoms are valid and deserve medical attention and root-cause resolution. To talk to us about your symptoms, call us at 346-240-4911 to book a discovery call today!

February 21, 2023

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