In this day and age of the hustle and bustle lifestyle, being tired is something we all deal with – a part of life that we cannot seem to escape. But how do you know when your tiredness is normal or something you should pay more attention to? Adrenal fatigue affects a significant number of people in various ways, and you could be dealing with it right now without even knowing.
Maybe you’ve heard of adrenal fatigue but didn’t think it was affecting you. You might be unsure of what the adrenal glands do, or where they even are? Don’t worry – you aren’t alone. The adrenal glands are located above the kidneys and they are responsible for producing important hormones - cortisol and adrenaline. When the adrenal glands are unable to work as efficiently as they should, problems arise. This is common with people who are struggling with stress of all kinds – mental, emotional, and physical. When the adrenal glands aren’t functioning properly, the glands aren’t producing their important hormones. When this happens, the body feels the effects in various ways.
Are you just tired? Or do you think adrenal fatigue might be the culprit to your exhausting days?
Here are a few ways to notice if you may be struggling with adrenal fatigue…
Getting Out of bed is difficult. Insufficient sleep is one of the leading causes of adrenal fatigue. Without quality and adequate sleep, the adrenal glands will collapse. A patient suffering from adrenal fatigue often wakes up in the morning feeling extremely tired regardless of the amount of sleep they had.
Unbelievable Fatigue. High levels of tiredness or fatigue each day isn’t something to take lightly. Although aging can cause a significant drop in energy levels, there is still a distinct line between normal tiredness and something more. If you can’t get any relief from your exhaustion, no matter how much sleep you get or how well you eat, be sure to see your medical professional.
Unable to handle stress. It’s true that many people seem incapable of handling stress well. Some people seem to suddenly be incapable of handling stress when they were once very good at it. When you begin to feel a sudden change in your ability to manage stress, seek the attention of your medical professional and let them know about your change in stress.
Out-of-control craving for salty foods. Keep a close eye on your cravings. If you crave salty foods regularly or have a new craving for salty foods that you can’t kick, your body may be telling you you’re your adrenals are suffering. When your adrenal glands are depleted, your sodium levels drop, causing the craving for a substitute – salty foods.
High energy in the evenings. A person with adrenal fatigue may have too much energy in the evenings. Cortisol levels are high early in the morning, drop during the day, before peaking again in the evening. Often, this can lead to trouble sleeping at night.
Other symptoms you should watch out for include:
- Joint pains
- Low libido
- Dizziness when standing up
- Dark circles forming under the eyes
- You get sick easily
If any of this sounds like something you’re dealing with, please be sure to see your medical professional and let them know what you’ve been going through. The health of our adrenal glands is crucial in our overall well-being, so treating them well is of utmost importance.
I think one of the best daily rituals for self-care is Abhyanga, self-massage with oil. Your slowing down for the massage and giving your body deep comforting touch it needs. You don’t have to do this practice for a long period of time but just commit to 5 minutes every night before you go to bed.
How to practice Abhyanga:
Put a clean towel on the edge of the bathtub to sit on. Warm some oil (coconut for warmer months and sesame for colder months) in a bowl with water that has been warmed on the stove. Let the oil sit for about 5 minutes to makes sure it’s is warm to the touch but not hot or burning.
Begin to massage your body with long strokes on your arms, legs and torso and circular movements around your joints. If you’re going to wash your hair, massage your scalp too. It feels divine.
Sit with the oil for as long as you can and then wash off in the shower with just water and no soap or if you feel too greasy use very gentle natural soap such as diluted castile soap.
Adrenal fatigue will take time to heal from but it is possible. A good recipe that relieves adrenal fatigue symptoms is slow down, eat really good food and laugh.
Do you think you have adrenal fatigue? Let me know in the comments below the practices you have implemented in your life to help your body heal its self.