No one likes to feel tired and stressed all the time, especially when they haven’t had adequate sleep. But for many people this is an everyday reality, and it can happen when you suffer from adrenal fatigue.
What is adrenal fatigue?
Adrenal fatigue signs and symptoms manifest as a result of excessive fatigue to the adrenal glands. These glands are responsible for producing essential hormones; when this function is impaired it can lead to tiredness and fatigue, as well as other symptoms.
Usually people who are under significant stress are more likely to experience adrenal fatigue.This means that mental, physical and environmental stresses could be contributing to the creation of adrenal fatigue.
While not formally accepted under the standards of conventional medicine, naturopathy and herbal medicines have been used to address adrenal fatigue for a long time. Naturopathic nutritional supplements and other methods have all been used to improve the health of the glands.
Naturopathic treatments for adrenal fatigue
Rehmannia Glutinosa is a traditional Chinese herbal medicine, which is now incorporated into Western naturopathic treatments of adrenal fatigue. It’s a herbal medicine which is used to help improve and balance cortisol levels, in turn helping to relieve the fatigue sufferers may face. There are a variety of different herbal medicines that can be used in a treatment plan for adrenal fatigue, so it’s best to speak to a doctor that specialises in the field in order to determine an appropriate course of action. A good doctor will seek to address the root causes of the fatigue, and may prescribe Rehmannia or other herbal medicines in order to mitigate symptoms of adrenal fatigue.
There are a range of nutritional supplements on the market for just about everything you can think of. While some supplements are commonly used to treat adrenal fatigue, it’s a good idea to use supplements only after being advised by a doctor. In many cases a blood test can help to identify deficiencies that can be addressed through dietary changes or by taking supplements. It’s possible to just buy them off the shelf based on a general recommendation, however a more considered approach is recommended.
Lifestyle and diet
Modifications to both your lifestyle and diet can have a significant effect on improving your ability to recover from adrenal fatigue. Generally, people who experience adrenal fatigue are already leading busy lives, so sometimes it can be difficult to make appropriate changes. However, even small differences can have a substantial effect.
It’s a good idea to avoid processed and packaged foods as much as possible, and instead opt for a variety of fresh fruit and vegetables daily. Also, make sure to consume at least 2 litres of water per day, and get at least 8 hours of sleep. In addition to making these changes to your lifestyle, you should also consider taking part in exercise that is relaxing, like yoga and tai chi, which will also help you unwind and spend time in positive environments.
Exercise doesn’t have to be excessively intense, competitive or aggressive. In fact, for people experiencing adrenal fatigue, high intensity or competitive sports may not always be recommended. Rather, exercise that promotes a positive state of mind, such as yoga, meditation and tai chi, is much better for improving both your physical and mental health. Additionally, 30 or so minutes of low to moderate aerobic exercises can be beneficial (think swimming, cycling, and walking). It’s also a good idea to exercise in the morning, as it can improve your metabolism and energy levels throughout the day.
While the symptoms of adrenal fatigue can be debilitating, there are a number of changes that can be made to improve your health. It’s best to talk with one of our Naturopaths at the Australian Menopause Centre when considering if herbal medicines or supplements are right for you, and to develop a tailored course of action. In addition, taking positive steps to improve your lifestyle, diet and general health can also help in the recovery against adrenal fatigue.