Have you been wondering why you are so tired and what this may be due to? Have you read about adrenal fatigue but were not sure if you suffer from it? Have you spoken to people about your concerns and they have dismissed them? Adrenal fatigue has only received some attention recently and many medical practitioners still disregard it as a serious condition. Here are some of the more prominent signs indicating that you may have adrenal fatigue. Having just one sign, does not necessarily mean that you have AF but if you have a few signs, it may be good to have your adrenals checked out and Cortisol and other hormone levels tested.
1. You think you can’t survive without coffee
Coffee and energy drinks make the problem actually worse. While providing a short term kick for your energy, they may contribute to your symptoms as they overstimulate the adrenal glands and cause them to work even harder which wears them out even faster. It is a vicious circle. Too much caffeine during the day prevents you further from getting sleep.
2. You can’t get up in the morning
One of the biggest problem of adrenal fatigue is…tiredness and this happens when the elevated cortisol level during the night prevents you from getting the needed rest and you wake up tired and stay foggy most day. Elevated or irregular cortisol levels are typical for adrenal fatigue.
3. Everything is just too difficult to handle
When everyday shopping, cooking or working becomes just too difficult to handle, it may be due to an accumulation of stress leading to an underproduction of hormones such as adrenaline, norepinephrine and cortisol. If your hormones are out of sync due to too much stress and other factors come into place such as little sleep or the wrong diet for you, it is important to address holistically your health.
4. You have put on weight
Sleep is one of the most important things for weight loss and because of sleep deprivation due to high cortisol levels it can lead to increased levels of ghrelin which is the hormone that tells your body to eat. Additionally, lowered aldosterone levels may make you crave salty food such as chips or salted popcorn.
5. Your relationships go down the drain
Adrenal fatigue can influence your life so much that you are even not able to get out of the house or in the mood to meet friends and socialize. Furthermore, your love relationship may be suffering because you just have no sex-drive, may be a sign that sex hormones such as DHEA and DHEA-S are not produced enough which happens with adrenal fatigue.
6. You constantly get sick
When cortisol is perfectly balanced, it has an anti-inflammatory effect and helps your immune system to fight off infections. However, when cortisol levels are high or out of sync during or after times of high stress, your immune system becomes suppressed and susceptible to illness and inflammation. This is also one of the causes why often Allergies and Asthma are present with adrenal fatigue.
7. You are often anxious or depressed
Adrenal fatigue affects the production of hormones and though mostly cortisol levels are affected, the endocrine system is impaired which can affect our dopamine level which is our good mood hormone. Many people with AF are just so desperate which affects their mood even more.
8. You got Hypotension
Cortisol levels being out of whack lead often to your blood tension to be low most of the day. Usually at night it increases.
9. Fluctuating blood sugar
Blood sugar fluctuations are a telltale sign for adrenal issues. When it gets low, sugar cravings lead to excess eating of sugar and refined carbs which lead to a vicious cycle of crashes and often weight gain.
I you suspect Adrenal Fatigue, please see a medical practitioner to check out your cortisol levels and other hormone levels and possible seek treatment. A nutrition coach can then help you to adjust your lifestyle and stick to your nutrition goals to help you improve your daily stress and regain more energy.
If I can help you with any questions, please contact me.
By: Andrea Caprio, CTNC, CCWC