Let’s take a moment and appreciate all that our adrenal glands do for us. I bet you haven’t really given them much thought, even though they have been hard at work for you your entire life. Your adrenal glands are two squishy triangles that sit on top of each kidney and release hormones that are critical to life. Most notably, these hormones include cortisone and adrenaline. Cortisone plays a big role in regulating your metabolism, while adrenaline gives you that extra powerful push before a race or a big presentation at work.
Your adrenal glands are busy little engines. Unfortunately, like any engine, your adrenals can actually burn out if you overwork them. In our stressful day and age, we Americans have practically become experts in burning our poor adrenals to a crisp, leading to a condition known as adrenal fatigue.
Are you worried about the state your adrenal glands? Here’s how you know if your adrenals are starting to burn out:
You have difficulty getting up in the morning
The truth is, we’re all supposed to be morning people. Healthy individuals should wake up in the morning feeling bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, because their cortisol levels are peaking. However, a person in the early stages of adrenal fatigue will miss out on this injection of energetic hormones with the early morning sunshine. They will be the ones hitting the snooze over and over again and dragging themselves into the office desperately clutching a double mocha latte with an extra shot of expresso.
You get an energy boost at night
Do you describe yourself as a night owl? That might be thanks to your adrenals. In the early stages of adrenal fatigue, your glands may have enough juice to give you a hit of cortisone late in the evening. If you often feel exhausted all day long only to begin perking up at night, it’s time to get your adrenals checked.
If you stayed up all night putting together a report for work or reading through the latest book by your favorite author, then there’s a reason you feel like a zombie the next morning. It’s a whole other thing if you feel like a zombie all the time. If you can’t remember the last time you actually felt energetic or alive, then something is going majorly wrong inside of you, and your adrenals may be to blame.
Achh-Choo! Poor immune system
Why is it that everyone else gets the sniffles for a day and you’re bed-ridden for a week? Do you keep boxes of tissues, vitamin C tablets, and cough syrup in your desk at the office? Then your immune system may be taking a permanent sick day of its own. A weak immune system is a classic sign of adrenal fatigue. You’ll notice that you’ll get sicker more easily that your peers, experience worse symptoms, and stay sicker longer.
Other symptoms of adrenal fatigue include:
- Craving salty foods
- Difficulty handling stress and processing emotions
- Join pain
- Low libido
- Low blood pressure
- Weight gain
- Dry skin
- Dark circles under your eyes
If these symptoms seem familiar, don’t worry! (That’s what got you into this mess in the first place.) There are ways to help strengthen your adrenals and get you hormonally back on track. The first step is to start testing yourself to confirm that adrenal fatigue is the cause of your symptoms. I’ve listed third-party labs I use and trust on my website where you can get these tests done. You can also contact me to schedule a no-risk consultation about your case.
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