Did you know that the most common cause for fatigue is adrenal exhaustion or adrenal burnout? This means that because of some long-term period of stress, your cortisol levels became depleted. Even if the stress was in the past you could still be suffering from exhausted adrenal glands now.
The four main sources of stress to your adrenal glands are: emotional, dietary, pain, and hidden inflammation (i.e. pathogens in the gut, or heavy metal toxicity). Many of my Functional Medicine clients have stress in all four areas. If you are under stress now from one or more of these areas, your adrenal glands could be burnt out.
Emotional stress like the death of someone you are close to, a divorce, or work or financial related stress can add up and deplete your adrenal glands, causing fatigue. Experiencing trauma in your life, emotional, physical or sexual abuse, will quickly burn-out your adrenals.
Certain ways of eating can also cause significant stress on the adrenals. Eating too much sugar or refined carbs will play havoc with your blood sugar levels, leading to high cortisol, and eventually adrenal burn-out. On the flip side, skipping meals and eating very low-carb could also burn-out the adrenals, as blood sugar drops too low, which then causes cortisol to raise so that it can pull glucose from the liver in an act to balance out blood sugar levels. Eating foods that you are sensitive or allergic too, will of course cause stress on the adrenals, leading to burn-out.
Pain & Hidden Inflammation
Long-term pain and hidden inflammation depletes cortisol and causes fatigue and adrenal burn-out. These include ongoing injuries, joint pain, pathogens in the gut, food allergy/intolerance reactions, heavy metal toxicity, & poor liver function. When I did my own GI Stool Test (after my Adrenal Test, which revealed I was in Stage 2 Adrenal Fatigue), I was shocked at the number of pathogens in my gut – parasites, yeast infections, bacterial overgrowth. This was enough alone to burn out my adrenals!
An additional source of stress: children, lol! Children are wonderful creatures, but I’m sure every mother could agree that they can stress the body. Having a second or third child is often a significant source of stress for women and can be a time when the adrenal glands burn out and fatigue starts. I can definitely attest to this one! Babies sap the life out of me – or at least they suck the nutrients from me. Considering the nutritional demand of pregnancy and lactation, not to mention the many sleepless nights, and the emotional stress of trying to work out how to keep a newborn happy and alive, is enough to burn any new mum out. In fact, I have very rarely tested a new mum who hasn’t been in adrenal fatigue.
If you have long-term fatigue I can test and correct your cortisol levels with an adrenal stress test and bring your energy levels back to normal with a lab-based supplement program. If you want to start feeling AMAZING again, flick me a message to find out more about our Functional Medicine Consultations, Lab-Testing & Treatment Plans!
Functional Medicine Practitioner