Last week we dove into the importance of supporting our body’s most important stress coping organs, our adrenal glands. Adrenal fatigue is rampant – it’s estimated that up to 80 percent of adults experience adrenal fatigue during their lifetimes, yet it remains one of the most under-diagnosed conditions in the US.
Anyone is susceptible to stress, but some primary components leading to adrenal fatigue are: lack of restorative sleep, living through periods of intense emotional stress (current times!), over working, poor food choices, using food and drinks as stimulants when tired, lack of proper rest and rejuvenation. Poor adrenal function can even begin at birth – children born to mothers already suffering from adrenal fatigue or who experience stress in the womb typically have lower adrenal function.
Adrenal fatigue is a collection of symptoms, some of which include:
- low energy
- a general sense of feeling unwell
- reduced libido
- ringing in the ears
- increased premenstrual symptoms
- decreased immunity
People with poor functioning adrenal glands may not have obvious signs of illness, yet they live feeling unwell, do not feel rested after sleep, and may rely on stimulants like coffee or sugar to get through the day.
Sometimes the adrenal cortex can become so depleted that the body resorts to recruiting the fight or flight hormones – epinephrine and norepinephrine. This can lead to rapid heart rate, anxiety, and insomnia.
Adrenal fatigue can be difficult to recognize, because our bodies have an incredible capacity to ‘rise to the occasion,’ and we’ve gotten so used to living such a pressured lifestyle. Because poor adrenal function can lay the foundation for other more serious illnesses such as fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, type II diabetes, and auto-immune disorders it’s important to tend to these walnut sized glands that sit like hats on top of the kidneys.
Want to support your adrenals?
Last week we went over some foundational nutritional advice that will go a long way in steadying your adrenal function.
Here are some other ideas to bolster this critical stress coping glands as we navigate this pandemic that has no end in sight, so far.
The adrenals thrive on rhythm and routine. Establishing a healthy waking portion of the circadian rhythm supports optimal sleep as our sleep-wake cycle is light driven. Restful sleep is how our adrenals repair. I have been using a light box for the first time myself and notice better clarity, focus, and easier to rise in the morning.
Establish Strong and Healthy Boundaries
Are there people in your life who simply drain you? When you get off the phone with them, they say how much better they feel and you feel like total crap. They were able to get in and take a hit – I love Dr. Northrop’s book Dodging Energy Vampires – it dives deep into this phenomenon. The truth is if there are energy vampires in your life, it will be hard to heal your adrenals.
B Vitamins to the Rescue
We’ll do more of a deep dive into these powerful supplements. B vitamins are essential for the production of cellular energy and provide foundational support for neurotransmitter production. B vitamins are readily depleted by stress, and because numerous neuroendocrine and enzymatic processes rely on B vitamins, they are an important nutritional supplement to consider. B vitamins are necessary for regulating cortisol and they are considered essential – meaning they are not produced by the body, so we need to get adequate levels from our diet or from nutritional supplements. It’s important to get an active form of B vitamins to ensure bioavailability. Any excess of B complex that isn’t used will be eliminated through the urine in a body that’s well hydrated.
If there is a fountain of youth, establishing a strong and powerful connection to the earth is it! When we can heal our root chakras to be able to communicate with the electromagnetic field, this stabilizes our nervous system making us more resilient and able to stay centered under pressure, or to bounce back more easily. Check out this guided meditation.
P.S. Consider attending my Yoga and Energy Healing Retreat, guaranteed to ground your nervous system and revitalize your adrenal glands.