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Adrenal Fatigue – When tiredness is unexplained.

Obviously as nutritionists (nutritional therapists) we are involved with working with people to improve the diet. Sometimes when people are feeling exhausted it is really because they are eating a diet that does not support their energy requirements – someone on a very low carbohydrate diet (somehow these days it seems that all carbs are classed as “evil”!) or someone eating loads of sugar and sweet treats, for example, is likely to experience trouble with their blood sugar (fluctuatingenergy levels) other reasons for tiredness might be:

  1. Low levels of iron

  2. Poor diet – low in nutrients, including essential fats

  3. Not enough water

  4. Not enough sleep or poor quality sleep

  5. Infections – or recovery from infections

  6. Thyroid function

  7. Too much exercise/not enough exercise

  8. Recovery from infection/virus


One other area nutritional therapist might consider is adrenal function – The adrenals glands are where your stress hormones come from and allow you to cope with stress. Medically low adrenal function is not recognised only a complete lack of hormone is recognised as a medical condition and is really rare (Addison’s disease) – although President Kennedy suffered and managed to cover it up successfully.

It is possible that your adrenal glands can get tired, if you have been under stress for a number of years without respite. It means that the production of cortisol (flight and fight hormone) is reduced – you do need stress hormones to feel energetic and to cope with the stress that is thrown at us. There are many ways to look after the adrenal glands:

  1. Get to bed early – 10.00pm would be ideal

  2. Eat a diet that balances your energy across the day (low GI diet would be ideal)

  3. Take time for relaxation – breathing is important

  4. Take time for exercise – but make sure that you don’t over do it if you are tired. Try yoga/pilates too

  5. Make sure you are taking your holidays

  6. Draw your boundaries at work – make sure that you get home at a decent time

How do you know if you have adrenal fatigue? Come and talk to a nutritional therapist at The Nutrition Coach to find out more – 0845 0502442

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