The Journal of Psychosomatic Research reports that adrenal burnout among women can show, among other things, higher levels of HbA1c, the standard way health care providers diagnose diabetes and prediabetes.
Adrenal burnout is one of the conditions found in many women today. Besides elevating their blood sugar, the women who participated in this 2003 study reported more job strain, less social support at work, higher levels of anxiety, depression, and poor sleep.
Many of the women I meet with at Holland Health Coaching describe their lives as busy, stressed and fatigued. In today’s world, women in their 50s have already lived through 30+ years of adulthood along with all of the related psychological stress that faces most adults: 30-years of blaring alarm clocks, bumper-to-bumper traffic, and demanding work and family schedules, to name a few of the highlights.
The adrenal glands are critically involved in your body’s reaction to stress, whether it is a life-threatening experience or a mental stress that comes from trying to simultaneously be all things to all people. During stressful moments, days and years, your body reacts by pumping out stress hormones like adrenaline, DHEA and cortisol. If you sit quietly and check in with your body today, would you say that you have experienced so much of this stress-related body tensing that you are feeling burned out? If you are feeling tired day after day, your adrenal glands are likely feeling the same way. Dr. Fred Pescatore in New York City reports that adrenal burnout now impacts 86% of women in the U.S. Is it impacting your life?
Here are some common symptoms suffered by women with adrenal fatigue:
- Lack of stamina with both morning and afternoon slumps in energy
- Feelings of overwhelm
- High blood pressure
- Low libido
- Abdominal fat that you cannot seem to diet or exercise away
- Mental fog or poor memory
- Cravings for sweet or salty food
- Poor wound healing
- Dizziness upon standing
- Lowered resistance to infection
To properly test for adrenal fatigue, you or your doctor can check your levels of cortisol with a saliva test. There are at-home tests you can purchase and we can work together to test your levels and create a plan for addressing your fatigue.
There are also natural supplements you can use to bolster your body as the stresses of life are reduced and your body heals. For example, B vitamins and 5-HTP are very supportive of your adrenal system and they can boost your serotonin levels. Serotonin helps you sleep better and may help you with weight reduction. Other natural solutions to this kind of adrenal stress are
- regular exercise
- deep breathing
- plenty of laughter
Learning how to meditate and meeting up with girlfriends for a fun evening out are both wellness habits that can help you recover from stress-related injury. Did you know that researchers at Loma Linda University in California have documented the measurable difference in cortisol levels that happen when women watch humorous videos? It seems that watching a funny movie for 20 minutes causes a significant drop in cortisol and this impacts your ability to remember and learn. I believe I will add to my home library of funny movies for the winter months ahead!
If you are feeling like adrenal burnout is impacting your life, I hope you will feel comfortable reaching out to me today. I am happy to answer your questions and help you take the next important steps in healing your adrenal glands and rebuilding your vibrancy for the important years that life still has in store for you!