In today’s fast-paced world, it is not uncommon for people to feel chronic fatigue and just chalk it up to simply working too much and sleeping too little. This truth is, after years of this lifestyle there could be long-term health consequences. It could be a result of a fairly uncommon, until recently, condition called adrenal fatigue. Adrenal Fatigue is overlooked by most mainstream doctors, but many people are unknowingly battling this condition all the time. It is estimated that 80% of people experience adrenal fatigue and the physical symptoms of stress at some point in their lives.
In this blog, I am going to tell you what adrenal fatigue is and how you can distinguish it from the typical symptoms of chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS).
No!! They are not the same thing and if you ignore it, you could be headed down a long road of chronic conditions with long-term effects on your health.
So Let's Talk About Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS)
You might have been experiencing chronic fatigue for some time now and you are looking for help or maybe you have been diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. If so, you might be experiencing these symptoms:
- Weakened immune system, which means you get sick all the time.
- Poor memory and mental concentration, do you keep forgetting stuff?
- Muscle pain or pain in the joints, headaches, the works?
Are you thinking, "That's me!"
CFS can be a devastating and complex disorder often disabling a person. This overwhelming fatigue that is not improved with sleep is most often accompanied by a handful of other symptoms and can result in reduced participation in daily activities. Researchers have not yet identified what causes CFS, and there are no tests to diagnose it. However, many doctors diagnose CFS if your fatigue lasts for at least six months and your fatigue is not alleviated with bed rest.
However, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome can easily be mistaken for Adrenal Fatigue.
What is Adrenal Fatigue Anyways?
Let me start off by telling you about your adrenals glands. Your adrenals are glands that sit on top of our kidneys and although they are no bigger than the size of a walnut they have a very important job in the body, managing our stress. With the world we live in today, this job has never been more important.
The adrenal glands are also responsible for secreting over 50 hormones essential for life. To name a few: epinephrine (adrenaline), cortisol, progesterone and testosterone. These hormones are responsible for vital processes like energy production, fluid and electrolyte balance and fat storage.
For example, cortisol controls the strength of the immune system: too much cortisol weakens the immune system, increasing our susceptibility to infections and cancer, while too little leads to an overactive immune system and autoimmune disease. Cortisol also normalizes our blood sugar and regulates our blood pressure. This is serious business, right?
What Causes Adrenal Fatigue?
Adrenal Fatigue can be caused by intense or prolonged stress or can be a result of an acute or chronic infection or a stressful or traumatic event in one’s life.
Adrenal Fatigue used to be rare and now is all too common because of our 24/7 lifestyle we lead. Lack of relaxation accompanied by sleep deprivation, poor eating habits and excessive caffeine intake all contribute to this condition.
It will interest you to know that Adrenal Fatigue or Dysfunction has been coined as the 21st Century Stress Syndrome, by Dr. Wilson, who has three doctorates and two master's degrees, all in different health-related disciplines.
Could what you are experiencing be adrenal fatigue after all?
Can you answer “YES” to more than half of these statements?
- I have allergies to several things in the environment and my allergies are getting worse.
- I experience blurred vision.
- I am frequently constipated.
- I have low tolerance to cold weather.
- My hands and legs get restless.
- My ability to handle stress and pressure has decreased.
- I am less productive at work.
- I seem to have decreased cognitive ability. I don’t think as clearly as I used to.
If so, you could be suffering from adrenal fatigue.
Why You Don’t Want to Ignore Your Exhausted Adrenals?
As we lead these busy lives and we encounter external stressors without learning to slow down and relax, our adrenal get overworked and essentially can no longer handle the stress being put on them leading to adrenal fatigue or adrenal dysfunction.
Once your adrenals are too exhausted to perform their vital functions and left undetected it will lead to a cascade of disease processes into motion. This was me just a few years ago. My inability to cope with stress, addiction to incessant doing and burning the candle at both ends without slowing down resulted in a major health crisis. I was suffering from hypothyroidism, hypoglycemia, vision problems, psoriasis, eczema, severe allergies, poor digestion, many food sensitivities and the list goes on.
Like many people I know who suffer from adrenal fatigue, but don’t know it, it can take several years; many doctor visits and thousands of dollars to finally figure it out. Once I learned about Adrenal Fatigue, it was the real turning point for me.
This diagnosis gave me a renewed sense of hope I needed and is what finally allowed me to heal my body from not only extreme fatigue, but from a handful of other chronic conditions.
How to Deal with CFS and Adrenal Fatigue?
The medical answer for CFS and adrenal fatigue or dysfunction is usually drugs. However, if you are in fact suffering from adrenal fatigue, drugs would not be the best option, quite the opposite actually. Rather elimination is the key. That is, you need to remove toxins from your body and allowing it to nourish and heal itself. As a result, the adrenal glands will begin to function normally and your energy will return.
I am not one to love the idea of slapping a label, disease or diagnosis on a person because it often makes us feel that we need some doctor to come along and fix us or help us get medication that will solve our problem. But in this case learning and being diagnosed with Adrenal Fatigued saved my life. Now I want to give you the tools to make simple, yet powerful shifts in your daily routine so you can tap into what YOUR body really needs to heal, all without using medication!
Let Us Help You
If someone had told me early on what I am sharing with you now, it would have saved me several years of pain, irritation, exhaustion, relationships, time and energy. I don’t want you to end up where I was just a few years ago.
I want to encourage you to learn more about Adrenal Fatigue, because if you suffer from it, the information here could drastically change your life.
If you haven't already...Take our free DIY Adrenal Fatigue Test HERE
Now we’d love to hear from you in the comments below. Have you been diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome or adrenal fatigue syndrome? What are your biggest symptoms? We are a healing community and your comment could support others on their healing journey. So take a moment to drop us a line below.