Our glands do a lot for us. Specifically our adrenal glands. Located just above your kidneys, the adrenal glands are responsible for producing essential hormones like cortisol and aldosterone. One helps regulate your metabolism and gives you reflexes to deal with stress and the other helps control blood pressure.
Did you know adrenal fatigue effects nearly all Americans at one point or another over their lifetime?
Adrenal fatigue has been coined the 21st century stress syndrome. Although once diagnosed it can be very easy to treat and prevent, adrenal fatigue can sometimes go unchecked leading to severe health issues long term and permanent.
Here are 6 symptoms which could be affecting your life as a result of chronic adrenal fatigue:
1. Difficulty Getting Out of Bed
Sure we all hit the snooze button once or twice in the early morning light, but the physical lethargy common to adrenal fatigue can leave people almost completely disabled in bed if left untreated.
When the adrenal glands are fatigued they have a hard time regulating cortisol and adrenaline levels in the body, making deep sleep nearly impossible. You may think you slept 8 hours, but your body may have been pumping with adrenaline and never actually had time to rest.
2. Inability to Handle Stress
Late stage adrenal fatigue can leave both the mind and body deplete of energy. Any emotional or physical stress can seem like a mountain of pain for those dealing with adrenal exhaustion.
When the adrenals become overworked they struggle to release enough of the hormones used to combat stress. Irritability, feelings of apathy, anxiety and even depression can be indicative of adrenal problems.
3. Craving Salty Foods
As I mentioned, the adrenal glands sit on top of our kidneys and work in conjunction with them to regulate fluid and mineral excretion. Consequentially, when these glands become overworked, they excrete less aldosterone and are unable to properly absorb nutrients.
The body will begin to crave high salt foods in an effort to replace the sodium that is not being absorbed by the kidneys and adrenal glands. If you find yourself suddenly craving high salt foods it could be the first sign of onset adrenal fatigue.
4. Higher Energy at Night
Normally our cortisol levels reach their peak in the mid morning and slowly decline as the day progresses. When first struggling with weak adrenal glands, our body will often mass produce cortisol later in the day in an effort to combat fatigue, making you feel wired at night and further negatively impacting healthy sleep habits.
5. Prone to Colds
Maintaing a balanced level of cortisol in the body is extremely important to immune function. As a natural anti-inflammatory, cortisol can help fight infection and reduce unnecessary swelling in the body. Too much or too little can open the body up to disease and infection. If you find yourself routinely fighting a cold, you may be suffering from adrenal fatigue.
6. Daily Exhaustion
The urge for coffee could be a symptom of more than just a caffeine habit. Routine adrenal fatigue can do lasting and long term damage to the function of neurotransmitters in the body.
Even if you recover the ability to produce hormones like adrenaline and cortisol, your glands may no longer be capable of pumping them into your system. Chronic adrenal fatigue can be a precursor for more serious fatigue syndromes which leave hundreds debilitated.
Image Source: Mercola