Adrenal fatigue is a real condition that can cause vast amounts of stress, leading to several negative consequences. These consequences can range from mild to severe and affect your physical health, mood, and personal relationships. Here are some ways to determine if you might be suffering from this condition.
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What is Adrenal Fatigue?
A Canadian-based researcher has proven that illness is just a generalized response to two physiological changes. It’s a generalized response. Our body mounts a stress response when we have a physical, mental, or emotional stressor. The hypothalamus perceives that stress response in the brain, and it sends a signal to the pituitary, and then the pituitary sends a signal to the adrenal glands.
Adrenal fatigue is a term used to describe the deterioration of thyroid function and hormonal balance in response to chronic stress. Adrenal fatigue is when the body becomes exhausted from long-term stress. It refers to both physical and emotional exhaustion: when your adrenals are overworked, they can no longer produce an adequate amount of cortisol; their output dips drastically or even disappears altogether for extended periods. This leaves you feeling exhausted and having trouble functioning normally throughout each day.
What are the symptoms of Adrenal Fatigue?
Adrenal fatigue can be recognized by experiencing fatigue, feeling “burned out,” or having symptoms similar to those caused by hypothyroidism, such as:
- Dry skin
- Poor memory
- Weight gain or difficulty losing weight without dieting
- Lack of sleep
In extreme cases, it may lead to adrenal insufficiency, which mimics Addison’s disease with possible organ failures like:
- Heart failure
- Low blood pressure
- Muscle weakness (myalgia) eventually leads to paralysis (paresis);
- Diarrhea that includes mucous secretion from stomach wall ulcers;
- Intestinal bleeding due to damage caused during cramping attacks called crises:
- Anemia is due mainly to menstrual loss and results from other causes, including nutritional deficiency.
Additionally, some common triggers of an over-active adrenal gland are chronic stressors such as physical exercise routines lasting greater than 90 minutes per day on consecutive days followed by rest periods, resulting in uncontrollable mood changes associated with major depression or manic episodes. People might feel excessively happy and energetic at times, only followed by moments when they exhibit deep sadness without any logical reasoning behind their feelings other than feeling “depressed.”
Adrenal Fatigue Test
Unfortunately, there isn’t a reliable test if you’re unsure if you have this condition. Overall, attention to warning signals could help diagnose what should be treated accordingly through natural means.
A cortisol saliva test is the best way to test whether you are suffering from adrenal fatigue. It measures how much cortisol was present in bodily fluids before certain activities that day. If there were no signs of stress on either side due to exercise or work, it would reveal nothing about one’s health status because these don’t affect one’s adrenaline level very often.
The ACT Adrenal Stress Index
It is a 24-item questionnaire designed to measure the severity of symptoms such as fatigue, sleep disturbance, and mood. The test has five subscales with approximately six items in each one. It assesses:
- Daily life stressors (e.g., role overload; work or school pressures).
- Perceived stressful events affecting health/life circumstances
- Acute physiological responses
- Chronic psychological factors
- Subclinical physical illness
The test can be administered online by professionals or at home by taking it while experiencing some of these daily stresses yourself on an empty stomach before going to bed for two consecutive nights using a pre-scored answer sheet sent through mail order.
You should look out for whether or not your blood pressure has been on an upward trend over time and if it’s become too high due to stress levels in your life; symptoms like difficulty sleeping at night and digestive dysfunction may also be indicative of this issue.
For your guide to healing your adrenal health to increase your energy and feel your best, check out the the 14-Day Adrenal Health Quick StartProgram here!