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Adrenals are the small organs that sit on the head of each kidney. They are an important component of the hormonal system in both males and females. Many important hormones collectively called corticosteroids are produced and released by these tiny organs in the bloodstream.
Increased sedentary lifestyles and bad dietary habits have promoted adrenal disturbance. Moreover, it produces a drastic effect on the whole hormonal system of the body especially in females as menstrual cycles are regulated by the release of hormones.
The main adrenal hormone, Cortisol also known as the Fight or flight
hormone doesn’t have a direct impact on the menstrual phase but indirectly produces
a profound impact on it.
Why addressing Adrenal health is important?
HPO (hypothalamic-pituitary-ovarian) axis regulates the production and secretion of all the hormones in females. Adrenals produce effects on this axis, disrupting the whole endocrinal system.
Secondly, cortisol is an adrenal hormone that is released in emergencies for acute periods. Due to prolonged physical, mental and emotional stress, this hormone chronically flows in the bloodstream and impairs the release of estrogen, progesterone, and testosterone.
As estrogen and progesterone are the two main culprits who maintain a healthy cycle, the chronic release of cortisol induces dramatic repercussions on the monthly cycles in females.
Not just that, chronic secretions from adrenal glands, make the organ weak, and after some time, it becomes unable to meet the bodily demands hence, suffers from adrenal insufficiency or in common words adrenal fatigue.
People experiencing chronic, fatigue, insomnia, brain fog, issues while concentrating, frequent gut infections, frequently tired, and unable to produce sufficient energy to meet the requirements of daily chores or job work suffer from adrenal fatigue.
Symptoms of adrenal fatigue
Adrenal fatigue refers to the exhausted adrenal organs that are unable to produce optimum hormones as per the demands. The main culprit in adrenal fatigue is chronic stress. Stress not only promotes inflammation in the body but, makes the body less productive.
A person having adrenal fatigue remains tired, with constant low energy levels. It also causes nutrient deficiencies which further aggravates the risk of infections and low immunity.
Adrenal hormones are the first to respond to stress, at the same time, they are the ones who suffer from the repercussions of the stress.
If you are suffering from the blow mentioned issues, you are likely to have adrenal fatigue.
- Poor sleep quality or insomnia
- Problem while waking up in the morning
- High energy during evening time
- Blood sugar spikes
- Low energy in the morning
- Irritability, mood disturbances
- Sugar cravings
- Weight gain
- Irregular periods
- Anxiety or depression.
- Poor stress response
- Compromised immune system
- Skin breakouts, hormonal acne, and reddish/ bluish lines on the abdomen or upper thigh.
- Joint pain
- High blood pressure
- Nutrition deficiencies.
- Muscle weakness.
- Decreased sex drive
- Body ache
Weight gain due to adrenal fatigue doesn’t look similar to general weight gain. You will find, more fat on the upper body, with comparatively thinner arms and legs. The face and neck look rounded and heavy.
What happens inside the body?
Due to physical stressors like illness, infections, trauma or mental stress body produces steroids or cortisol to combat the stressful situation. Other triggers like environmental stressors also induce similar results. Stressors that influence cortisol production are:
1. Environmental triggers like triclosan, a chemical present in laundry products.
2. Dietary influences- more intake of processed foods or artificial sweeteners that increase the burden of liver detoxification.
3. Emotional stress- trauma, anxiety
4. Overuse of antibiotics- besides deaccelerating the gut flora, antibiotics promote stress in the body by impacting inflammation.
Cortisol regulates immune function, blood pressure, blood sugar levels, and managing stress. When cortisol is present in the bloodstream, the following functions are carried out.
- Regulates the body functions, to stay on high alert
- Increased energy levels
- Increased respiratory and heart rate
- More blood glucose levels
It works on the pancreas to decrease insulin production as insulin decreases blood glucose levels. Cortisol in the blood for longer periods causes Insulin resistance, weight gain, and thyroid issues.
Hence, adrenal fatigue needs to be addressed and proper preventive measures should be taken to maintain adrenal health/
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