What happens when you are halfway through your day, and your energy plummets? Often people turn to coffee, chocolate, and energy drinks that may give you a lift in energy, but only temporarily. These foods create a massive surge in cortisol, which, in the long run, further depletes your ability to manage stress.
Biochemically, stress does things in the body that eventually lead to the break down of tissue or to a dramatic disturbance in hormonal function.
Because of this, many of our modern disease patterns are heavily related to the stress in our lives and how we manage it. These are common disorders, like:
Autoimmune disorders like celiac disease, hypothyroidism, and rheumatoid arthritis
Gut disorders, like irritable bowl syndrome
Hormonal imbalance, such as irregular menses or possibly infertility
While common, these conditions are typically at the end of the spectrum. Meaning stress has been severe enough or chronic enough to lead to the breakdown of many systems within the body.
The adrenal glands are small walnut-sized glands that are located just above the kidneys and release hormones in response to stress.
Some of us are better equipped to handle stress. The rest of us have adrenal glands that are overworked and tired. In other words, our adrenals are exhausted.
Adrenal exhaustion leaves a person feeling tired, heavy, and susceptible to illness. When the adrenals are exhausted, they are no longer able to maintain appropriate levels of cortisol. Cortisol is secreted by adrenal glands in response to any stressful event, whether real or perceived.
When we are locked into an on-going state of stress, we are responding to one small stressful stimulus after another. Add to that other common stressors like poor diet, lack of exercise, irregular sleep, and long work hours – and you have a recipe for adrenal burnout! When we internalize stress in a negative way, we are far more likely to feel sick, tired, and depressed.
Warning Signs of Adrenal Exhaustion
At some point, the adrenals can no longer support elevated levels of stress. Before the adrenals fall fully into exhaustion, other aspects of the endocrine system are affected first. Signs of adrenal exhaustion are often related to one another.
Common warning signs to look out for include:
Changes in mood
Low sex drive or irregularity in menstrual cycle
Cortisol levels rise and fall depending on what and when you eat. Remember, the key to adrenal health is keeping cortisol levels within their normal range. High cortisol contributes to stubborn weight gain.
When it comes to diet, stabilizing blood sugar is crucial since cortisol is released to manage blood sugar levels:
Avoid excess sugar and carbohydrates.
Eat regularly throughout the day and avoid eating late at night.
An excessive level of cortisol is often the real culprit that can keep you from losing weight. Infection and gut disorders lead to inflammation and elevated levels of cortisol. When cortisol is out of control, digestion shuts down. Poor gut ecology is one essential part of a vicious cycle that often occurs in adrenal burnout.
While this is a normal aspect of the stress response, chronically elevated levels of cortisol contribute to both inflammation and infection. The gastrointestinal system is one of the most common places in the body to suffer from low-grade inflammation and infection. When our inner ecology is out of balance, we can experience anything from heartburn to gas to bloating.
Unfortunately, sometimes the gut remains symptom-free. Instead, there may be other signs of inflammation and irregular levels of cortisol, including hormone-related problems in women.
Other signs of adrenal burnout may be:
Wrinkles and premature aging
Trouble falling asleep or staying asleep
Declining bone health
Compromised immune function, leading to frequent illness
Achy joints, stiff neck, tight shoulders, and low back pain
What You Can Do to Restore Adrenal Health: 3 Quick Tips
Those of us who are stressed, tired, and suffer from depression often have an irregular release of cortisol throughout the day.
Adrenal burnout can affect mood, metabolism, and immune system function. In order to stop adrenal exhaustion in its tracks, apply these 3 tips:
1. Choose nutrient-dense foods that give authentic energy to your cells and supply your body with the power it needs to control inflammation.
While inflammation and infection typically begin in the gut, the consequences are almost always systemic if allowed to persist. Keep in mind that gastrointestinal problems are often closely related to poor adrenal health.
2. Use tools that help to curb inflammation and gently detoxify the body.
The process of cleansing can make a big difference in adrenal health. For example, if your liver is damaged from poor diet, prescription drug use, or alcohol, you will have a harder time bringing your adrenals into balance.
The liver helps the body to metabolize and eliminate toxins, as well as hormones. An unhealthy liver can undermine an adrenal repair program.
When restoring adrenal health, it is essential to support the liver. Cleanse the liver of toxic buildup while protecting and repairing liver tissue.
Stress is mostly perceived. Adrenal burnout typically involves more than one lifestyle factor. Because diet is something that we can control, it is the first step that we can take in managing stress. A program that sets out to both energize and detoxify the body can help us safely navigate through adrenal exhaustion into a healthier, happier body and mind.
3. Rebuild the adrenals.
The adrenals need minerals to thrive. Eat plenty of ocean vegetables and supplement with the highest quality blend of humic, fulvic, micro, and macro minerals and amino acids. These organic compounds enhance mineral and trace element uptake and support detoxification, rebuilding cellular energy.
What To Remember Most About This Article:
If you rely on coffee, chocolate, and energy drinks to make it through the day, you may get a temporary boost, but you’ll also get a massive surge in cortisol. In the long run, this will make it even more difficult for your body to manage stress to support your health.
When the adrenal glands become overworked and overtired, it leads to adrenal exhaustion. You may feel fatigued, heavy, and susceptible to illness as the body is no longer able to maintain appropriate levels of cortisol.
Common warning signs of adrenal exhaustion include weight gain, fatigue, mood changes, gut disorders, and a lower sex drive. Symptoms of adrenal burnout can progress as far as premature wrinkles, trouble sleeping, declined bone health, achy joints, and more.
To restore adrenal health and improve your quality of life, put these 3 simple tips into practice today:
Eat nutrient-dense foods that will give your body true energy and the power it needs to control inflammation.
Focus on cleansing to curb inflammation and gently detoxify the body.
Rebuild your adrenals with essential minerals from ocean vegetables.
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