I am a high energy, highly functioning individual! I admit it! Happy most of the time, able to manage stress successfully without feeling overly burdened or "crazy", able to stay up late and get stuff done (GSD) then ready to start the next day with vigor... until recently. I started to notice that I needed to go to bed earlier, and would wake fatigued. I felt like I needed a nap in the afternoon, and my metabolism was failing me. I was having indigestion several hours after eating, and felt "frazzled" and unable to focus my attention adequately to accomplish simple tasks like laundry or a menu plan and grocery list. Thinking felt like a burden. Hot flashes that had been managed with ease kicked up with a vengeance. Everything just felt out-of-control!
And then it hit me... my poor little adrenal glands were miserably sad. Most people are aware that they have adrenal glands. They are part of the endocrine system and produce a variety of hormones including adrenaline, DHEA, progesterone, estrogen, testosterone, cortisol, and aldosterone, among others. These hormones mobilize the body's "fight" or "flight" response, our survival instincts. We count on them to get us through a crisis and then they are allowed to relax again, but in our high stress society, they stay stuck in high alert mode more times than they should. They are responsible for regulating our immune system, balancing body fluid, and they manage our blood sugar in conjunction with the pancreas. They regulate our body's inflammatory or anti-inflammatory response depending on the body's need. They are about the size of a walnut and sit atop each kidney. They are vital and they are essential for vitality. Something that I was severely lacking.
Besides the symptoms that I was experiencing, adrenal fatigue symptoms can include sugar and salt cravings, allergies, digestion problems, weight gain especially in the tummy, decreased ability to handle stress, frequent illness and longer recovery time, slow to start the day, mood swings, increased PMS, and feeling overwhelmed and/or depressed. I knew that I needed to change course swiftly or my body would struggle to regain it's balance. And I definitely do not have time for that!
So I refocused on the essentials... twice my body weight in ounces of water each day, increased healthy proteins and fats... quinoa, grass-fed beef, and wild-caught salmon, reduced simple sugars and starches, and herbal tea to help relaxation. Maintaining a regular sleep pattern, light exercise, activity balance (aka knowing when to say "No"), surrounding myself with the ones I love, including lots of extra laughter, and laser focus on my relationship with God are the lifestyle commitments. To give my adrenal glands the boost that they needed, I started a supplement schedule of Standard Process Adrenal Tonic, Adrenal Desiccated, and some support for my thyroid in the form of Thytrophin PMG. I am on my way to having happy adrenal glands, and functioning at the high capacity that I know that I am capable of, getting stuff done (GSD) efficiently and effectively...
and most importantly, Living Well once again!