Adrenal Fatigue: Is It a Hoax?

Received an email from a chipur reader and client several days ago. It was great hearing from him and he’s doing just fine. He told me he’d had some lab work and was referred for an assessment for adrenal fatigue. So what do you think? Is it legit? Well, it’s going to take us two articles to get to the bottom-line, so let’s get busy.

Our adrenal glands are located on top of each kidney and produce assorted hormones for fluid and electrolyte balance, as well as for sexual purposes.

But primary to our chit-chat is the adrenals’ production of cortisol, norepinephrine (noradrenaline), and epinephrineadrenaline).

Now, without going into buckets of detail, we need to talk about something known as the HPA axis. Here’s the flow – the hypothalamuscorticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH). CRH knocks on the door of the pituitary gland (in the brain) and gets it to secrete adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH). And ACTH convinces the adrenals to secrete cortisol, known as the “stress hormone.” And it’s cortisol that stimulates the production of norepinephrine, which tells our fight/flight response to get busy; as well as epinephrine, which gets things hoppin’. Phew! (in the brain) secretes

Now, here’s where adrenal fatigue comes into play. The idea is – chronic stress, which according to what we just discussed would lead to serious overwork of the adrenal glands, culminates in adrenal burnout. And that, of course, would equate to insufficient production of a variety of hormones. And there you have it – adrenal fatigue, aka hypoadrenia.

Here are the most prominent symptoms of adrenal fatigue…

  • Fatigue and exhaustion
  • Inability to cope with stressors
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Craving salty and sweet foods
  • Feeling more energetic in the evening
  • Feeling unrefreshed after a night’s sleep
  • Slow recovery from illnesses or injuries
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Hampered immune functioning
  • Premenstrual syndrome
  • Low blood pressure
  • Intense sensitivity to being cold

Well, okay – let’s leave it at that for today’s article. But you have to join us tomorrow as we determine if adrenal fatigue really exists.

So what do you think so far? What are your experiences with adrenal fatigue? Comments?