Understanding Adrenal Fatigue

Understanding Adrenal FatigueAre you tired even after a good night’s sleep? Do have poor digestion or have difficulty concentrating? Are you irritable, fearful, and depressed? These are among the long list of symptoms that are associated with adrenal fatigue.

It seems that more and more people find themselves under stress that just never lets up. But that’s not good news where our endocrine system is concerned. Our adrenal glands are designed to act in response to acute stress – acute meaning short-lived situations. Stress today, however, is becoming chronic in nature. The response demanded of our adrenal glands from chronic or long-term stress overloads and overtaxes them until they simply wear out.

Stress – Not Just a Psychological State

We have all heard the buzz words – “stressed out,” “frazzled,” “anxious.” Those descriptions sound like fundamentally psychological conditions that affect the realm of mind and emotion, but what you may not realize is that the human body translates these mental states in physical terms. To understand this concept, take a step back to a time when our ancestors might have been faced with being chased by a bear or a wolf. In such a situation, our adrenal glands would snap into active “fight or flight” mode and release hormones such as adrenaline in order to give you extra strength and speed to handle the threat. After the threat passed, another hormone, cortisol, would be released and we would most likely feel extra hungry and seek out calorie-dense foods to replenish our spent reserves. Today, however, our stress is of the chronic type and often never goes away. As such, cortisol is constantly being released and we end up overeating and causing our adrenal glands to work overtime.

Dietary Causes of Adrenal Fatigue

An unhealthy diet can also cause adrenal fatigue. A diet that is high in sugar, refined carbohydrates, and processed foods is the main culprit of adrenal fatigue. These types of foods are easily broken down and digest very quickly. This fast digestion causes a spike in blood sugar. In turn, insulin is released to handle the increase in sugar. It sounds like everything is working as it should except that the human body isn’t designed for the levels of blood sugar that are brought on by these processed carbs. Instead, we are designed for foods that digest more slowly like animal protein, fruits, and vegetables. The release of too much insulin brings about a drop in blood sugar and a vicious cycle of eating more refined carbs to get blood sugar levels up again ensues. The process gets more complicated with the release of cortisol which is also involved in the regulation of blood sugar levels as well as stress. Suffice it to say that the adrenals are severely taxed by the hormonal ups and downs brought about by excess stress and poor dietary habits.

Obviously, changing your diet is one of the easiest things you can do to help your adrenal glands to function properly. In addition to only eating whole natural foods, it is important to learn how to handle everyday stress. Make sure to relax every day and learn some stress-relieving techniques like deep breathing and meditation. A daily exercise routine like walking or yoga is also good for your endocrine system.


Related Articles By Cathe:

Overstimulated and Overstressed: How Adrenal Fatigue Leads to Depression, Weight Gain, and Disease

5 Reasons You Feel Sleepy & Less Productive after a Meal & What You Can Do about It

Hi, I'm Cathe

I want to help you get in the best shape of your life and stay healthy with my workout videos, DVDs and Free Weekly Newsletter. Here are several ways you can watch and work out to my exercise videos and purchase my fitness products:

Get Your Free Weekly Cathe Friedrich Newsletter

Get free weekly tips on Fitness, Health, Weight Loss and Nutrition delivered directly to your email inbox. Plus get Special Cathe Product Offers and learn about What’s New at Cathe Dot Com.

Enter your email address below to start receiving my free weekly updates. Don’t worry…I guarantee 100% privacy. Your information will not be shared and you can easily unsubscribe whenever you like. Our Privacy Policy