If lately you find yourself tired, sluggish, a bit emotionally out of whack and lacking excitement and energy for things that once got you going, you may be suffering from adrenal fatigue.
In short, it's a result of overworking your body, suffering through too much stress and not getting enough rest and sleep. Adrenal fatigue can often be hard to recognize because the symptoms are similar to those of several other common problems.
It is often exhibited by individuals who are under a lot of stress, either physically or mentally; this can be stress from your job, a relationship, or even as an athlete, constantly putting your body under physical stress and not having adequate rest and recovery.
The adrenal glands are responsible for dealing with stress in our life and elicit the stress response. When they are overworked however, due to constant activation they can become fatigues and stop functioning properly.
If these symptoms and precursors sound like they fit your description, here what you can do:
Increase your magnesium
Magnesium is a key mineral in adrenal health and is critical for its successful functioning. Your adrenal glands are ruled by the ratio of magnesium and sodium, and furthermore, stress causes us to lose magnesium. This adds up to decreased magnesium levels and an imbalanced magnesium and sodium ratio, which equal a struggling adrenal gland. This is exacerbated by the fact that it is already compromised due to being overworked form high stress levels. The result? Focus on consuming magnesium rich foods such as raw cacao beans, leafy green vegetables and sweet potato, and supplement with magnesium citrate or magnesium oxalate to help boost your levels.
Take rest days
At the root of adrenal fatigue is an overworked, overstressed body. Whether this means you haven’t been resting enough from exercise or not resting enough from your job, you owe it to your body to give it the rest days it requires. If you are leading a demanding schedule, focus on getting enough sleep and set aside one day a week as a designated rest day, where you let your body recharge and don’t do any exercise or engage in any stressful activities. This may mean you need to disconnect and shut off your phone, computer etc. and spend some time truly in rest mode!
Use Natural herbs
Licorice is a powerful natural ingredient that can have excellent healing effects on the adrenal gland. Furthermore, it supports the immune system, which is typically also compensated under high levels of stress, and is also an antioxidant. Consume a natural licorice tea daily, steeping covered for 15 minutes. Rhodiola is a second natural herb you can consume, which helps reduce the amount of cortisol produced in your body. Cortisol is the stress hormone and when produced in large amounts, can have negative consequences including lowered immune function and weight gain. Consume rhodiola as a tea as well to boost your energy and reduce your cortisol.
Up your B vitamins
While magnesium is the anti-stress mineral, your B vitamins, and in particular Vitamin B5 are your anti-stress vitamins. These vitamins are all key players in your body’s energy production systems, maintaining healthy hormone levels and supporting circulation and the nervous system. Stress depletes these vitamins more rapidly, and deficits in any of the Bs can leave you feeling fatigued, sluggish and with poor gut and skin health, not to mention, exacerbate the symptoms of adrenal fatigue. Find a good B complex multi vitamin, from a reputable brand and supplement daily, and increase your B rich foods, including wheat germ, whole grains, leafy green vegetables, bananas and legumes.