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So You Have Adrenal Fatigue, Now What?

If you’re reading this post it’s likely that you or someone you know has recently been told they have adrenal fatigue. You may have no idea what that is and your doctor may or may not give you much guidance or information about how to treat it or what to do next. Yet, there is hope!

Treatment of Adrenal Fatigue

Treatment of Adrenal Fatigue involves reducing stress on your body and mind, eliminating toxins from your food and environment, avoiding negative thinking, and revitalizing your body with the right healthy food for your body. Your body is an amazing machine and, when given the right tools, it can bring itself back into balance.

Adrenal Fatigue Recovery

Recovery from Adrenal Fatigue is possible, yet the amount of time it may take may depend on to what severity (and possibly how long) your adrenals have been suffering. Recovering from Adrenal Fatigue requires significant time, patience, and often a complete change in lifestyle. If your adrenal fatigue is mild, then you might restore your health in 1-3 months. If it’s moderate, it might take 6-12 months. If it’s severe, it might take 1-2 years.

Regardless of how long it takes, the sooner you get started on the road to wellness, the sooner you’ll start feeling better and restoring your adrenals to full health. You can take a number of concrete steps, as described below,  to heal your adrenals and return them to optimal health.

1. Remove any food from your diet that taxes your adrenal glands.

When it comes to healing from adrenal fatigue, and low energy in general, diet plays a big role. There are many foods that support adrenal function, but first it’s helpful to remove any foods that are difficult to digest or contain toxins or chemicals.

Foods to avoid:

  • Caffeine
  • Sugar and artificial sweeteners
  • Alcohol and soda
  • Processed and microwaved foods
  • Hydrogenated oils

2. Add nutrient-dense foods to your diet that are easy to digest and have healing qualities.

Eliminating foods that don’t support your adrenals is only half the battle. Next you need to add in nutrient-dense foods to give your body a fighting chance to heal. Here are some of my favorite superfoods for adrenal health:

  • Coconut
  • Olives
  • Avocado
  • Cruciferous Vegetables (cauliflower, broccoli, brussel sprouts, etc.)
  • Fatty Fish (e.g., wild-caught salmon)
  • Chicken and turkey
  • Nuts, such as walnuts and almonds
  • Seeds, such as pumpkin, chia and flax
  • Kelp and seaweed
  • Celtic or Himalayan Sea Salt

3. Eat a light, balanced meal every 90 minutes to two hours.

Most of us eat large meals 1-2 times a day with long stretches in between. This is not helpful when your adrenals are overextended as about 90 min to 2 hours after you eat a meal your bloodstream runs low on glucose, meaning you’ve run out of the sugars you consumed. Once this happens, your adrenal glands are forced to produce hormones such as cortisol to keep you going. So, if you frequently go for long stretches without eating then your adrenal glands are under a constant strain and you’re not giving them a chance to recuperate.

Use the grazing approach to food. Consume frequent meals throughout the day in order to keep your blood sugar balanced and steady throughout the day so your adrenal glands don’t have to get involved.

4. Take these “Core 4” supplements every day.

In an ideal world, your diet would be filled with whole, real foods and your gut would be in perfect shape to absorb all of the nutrients you need. Unfortunately, our modern world doesn’t look like that anymore.

The world we call home these days has nutrient-deficient soil (thus nutrient deficient crops), and our Western diet is filled with calorie-dense and nutrient-poor processed foods, GMOs and pesticides. We are continually exposed to toxins in our food, water, air and even personal care and cleaning products. As if that weren’t enough, our stress levels have skyrocketed and many people are dealing with gut imbalances, such as Candida and SIBO, which get in the way of proper nutrient absorption.

This combination of a decline in nutrient-dense food and an increase in stress, toxins and gut imbalances is why we can no longer get all of the vitamins and minerals we need from our diet alone. It’s what I refer to as “the perfect storm” and why I believe everyone should use a few essential supplements to maintain optimal levels of nutrients.

The “Core 4” supplements I recommend everyone take everyday are:

  1. High-Quality Multi-Vitamin
  2. Omega 3s (EPA/DHA, Fish oil)
  3. Vitamin D
  4. Probiotic

In addition to the “Core 4” supplements, these herbs and supplements specifically aid in adrenal function:

  • Ashwagandha
  • Licorice Root
  • Spirulina (preferably from Hawaii)
  • Ester- C
  • Chromium
  • Eleuthero (aka Siberian ginseng)
  • Schisandra
  • Magnesium
  • 5-MTHF
  • Coryceps
  • Panax ginseng
  • Rose hips
  • Barley grass juice extract powder
  • Astralagus
  • Lemon Balm
  • Rhodiola
  • Holy Basil
  • Zinc

5. Reduce stress on your body and your mind.

Stress reduction is key. Your adrenal glands have a big job and we can do a lot to help them out by make some changes to how we live our day-to-day life. Here are a few tips to help reduce stress on your body and give your adrenal glands a break so they can recover fully.

  • If you feel tired, rest as much as possible.
  • Sleep 8-10 hours per night.
  • Don’t stay up late. If you can, get to bed before 10pm and sleep in until 9 am. 7-9 am is an important time for adrenal repair.
  • Get more laughter and fun in your day.
  • Practice deep belly breathing every day. I recommend the 4-7-8 breathing technique.
  • Minimize work and relational stress. Set boundaries with stressful conversations.
  • Exercise regularly- even just walking can help.
  • Avoid negative people and negative self-talk. Surround yourself with people that encourage you.
  • Take time for yourself regularly and do something relaxing.
  • If you’ve experienced deep pain and trauma in your life, seek support such as coaching, therapy, or counseling to process any unresolved emotions.

Adrenal Fatigue Prevention

Once you get your body back into a state of balance and wellness, it will be important to create a lifestyle that will help you avoid Adrenal Fatigue in the future. The most straight-forward way to keep your adrenal glands strong and healthy is to avoid extended and/or extreme stress and strain that sets them up to overproduce adrenaline. If possible, cut back on obligations and manage your schedule and life in a way that makes space for rest, relaxation, and time to recover and heal. All of us experience emotionally and physically intense (and stressful) times in our lives, but it’s important to give your body adequate time to recover afterward.

To Your Recovery,

AngelaSignatureIcon

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Disclaimer: My blog pro­vides gen­eral infor­ma­tion and dis­cus­sion about supplements, health and related sub­jects. The words and other con­tent pro­vided in this blog, and in any linked mate­ri­als, are not intended and should not be con­strued as med­ical advice. If the reader or any other per­son has a med­ical con­cern, he or she should con­sult with an appropriately licensed physi­cian or other health care worker.

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