As a society we praise hardworking, fast paced lifestyles. We are under more physical and emotional stress than ever with busy lives, families, and high-demanding careers. All of these stressors affect our adrenals, the two little glands which sit on top of the kidneys.The adrenal cortex, the outer part of the gland, produces hormones that are key to life, such as cortisol which helps regulate metabolism and helps your body respond to stress. With all the stress in our modern day lifestyles, our body is in a constant state of “fight of flight.” This chronic state of stress can cause our adrenals to tire and adrenal fatigue to set in.
Here are some adrenal fatigue signs and questions to ask yourself
- Morning fatigue
- Do you feel tired, even after a good night’s rest?
- Does it take you awhile after waking to feel energy and “get going?”
- Mild depression
- Do you enjoy most of your day?
- Do you find enjoyment in life?
- PMS or menopausal symptoms
- Are you irritable or angry around your cycle?
- Do you struggle with depression around your cycle?
- Do you struggle with painful mensuration or ovulation?
- Decreased ability to handle stress
- Do you “snap” at small things?
- Has your tolerance levels decreased?
- Do you cry easily?
- Lack of energy
- Do you have the energy to make it through the day?
- Do you struggle with sugar craving at 2-4 PM to help you make it through the afternoon?
- Increased allergies
- Have your allergies worsened in the last few years?
Sodium and potassium rich foods help to keep the sodium/potassium levels balanced in the body, which is critical for adrenals. Calcium and magnesium, vitamins A, B’s and C are also important in stress regulation and adrenal function.
These foods help support adrenal function:
- Swiss Chard
- Brazil Nuts
- Kidney Beans
- Seaweed (particularly kelp)
- Dried figs
- Hemp seeds
- Dried dates
- Shiitake mushrooms
Simple Ways to Support your Adrenals:
1. Sleep 7.5 to 9 hours each night.
Try to be in bed and asleep by 10 pm if possible to optimize the effect of melatonin, which naturally increases at that time. Your body repairs physically between 10 PM- 2 AM and mentally between 2 AM- 6 AM.
2. Eat a protein-rich breakfast. Aim for 20-30 grams of protein in the morning.
Amino Acids (the building blocks of proteins) feed the adrenals and the body. They are also slow to digest, so they will release a slow steady stream of glucose into the bloodstream keeping your body from having a blood sugar crash.
3. Focus on eating fat, protein, and complex carb with each meal.
All 3 major types of macronutrients belong in each meal because each plays an important role in the metabolism of the body.
4. Eat every 2 to 4 hours from the time you wake until 2 hours before going to bed.
When your blood sugar crashes, your body releases cortisol to help it increase the glucose levels, furthering exhausting your adrenals. Large and infrequent meals push blood sugar and insulin levels to the max, which stresses your body and makes your adrenals work harder.
5. Avoid your food allergens.
When someone eats one of their food allergens or an inflammatory food such as gluten, dairy, eggs, soy, etc. their body releases cortisol to help decrease the immune response. Have food allergy testing done, avoid all allergens, and it is advisable to avoid high inflammatory foods (gluten and dairy) to decrease the body’s inflammatory load. We can help you determine your food allergies.
6. Do NOT drink just plain water…drink bone broth or add Himalayan Sea Salt to your water.
Many people are becoming depleted of nutrients, BUT people with adrenal issues often have low blood pressure because cortisol helps to regulate the blood pressure. By taking in more electrolytes, your adrenals are supported.
7. Exercise for 10 to 30 minutes, 3 to 5 times per week.
Depending on what stage of adrenal fatigue you are currently in, you may only be able to go out for a walk, do yoga, or any light exercise. Exercising longer than 30 minutes may only stress or exhaust your adrenals more, so don’t push it. Your body should be able to recover within 30 minutes of exercise. If this does not happen, you pushed yourself too hard.
8. 4-7-8 Breath (Inhale for 4 seconds, Hold it for 8 seconds, and Exhale for 8 seconds)
This type of breathing activates the parasympathetic nervous system and takes your body out of a state of sympathetic dominance or the “fight or flight” response.
We will be posting more adrenal support tips this week on Facebook, so check there.
We can test for adrenal fatigue by doing a saliva 4 point rhythm test. We test your saliva multiple times throughout the day to see how your body is handling cortisol. Call to schedule an appointment to discuss the options. 303-619-0499
Adrenal Support Pack: 1 Physica Energetics Adrenal Life Force, 1 Physica Energetics Spectralyte, 1 Physica Energetics Licro Intrinsic, and an Adrenal Workbook for $125.
In health and happiness,
Life. Health. Happiness.
88 Inverness Cir E Bldg H #105-106
Centennial, CO 80112
Castle Rock Location
1189 S Perry St, Suite 150
Castle Rock, CO 80104