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Health Blog

The MSN Healthcare Health Blog offers news and analysis on weight loss, fatigue, personal health, and health news. It includes contributions from Dr. Mark Neumann and others. Click now.

 

Adrenal Fatigue Recovery: 7 Habits to Help Your Adrenal Fatigue

Mark Neumann

Adrenal fatigue is a problem that is becoming more and more prevalent in today’s fast-paced society. With an increasing demand to work hard (and the lack of sleep and increased stress that comes along with it), it can be easy for your health to fall down your list of priorities. This is the case for many people who develop adrenal fatigue, which can occur as a result of chronic stress and adrenal insufficiency. The good news is, there are several things you can do to help your adrenals recover. Below are our top seven tips for adrenal fatigue recovery.

1.  Diet

The first step in adrenal fatigue recovery is to make your diet a top priority. By following the adrenal fatigue diet, you’ll be able to naturally increase your energy levels and increase healthy nutrients in the body. The diet will also help to promote the proper functioning of the adrenal glands, improve stress levels, and regulate healthy blood pressure.  

The adrenal fatigue diet is made up of two guiding principles: avoid any foods that may worsen your adrenal fatigue and eat more foods that will aid your recovery. This means eating whole foods rather than processed foods, eating at the right times, and avoiding foods which you have sensitivities or intolerances to. For more information about the adrenal fatigue diet – including what foods to eat and what foods to avoid – check out our blog post on the 11 Best Foods for Adrenal Fatigue + Adrenal Fatigue Diet Plan.

2.  Supplements

Supplements are key in managing and reversing the damage caused by abnormal hormone production in the adrenal glands. Studies have identified a range of supplements that can help support healthy adrenal gland function, while easing mental stress and anxiety. When looking for a supplement for adrenal fatigue recovery, make sure it includes vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid. Vitamin C is well-known for playing an essential role in energy production and is a broad-spectrum antioxidant that can protect DNA from damage caused by free radicals. This makes vitamin C particularly important for adrenal fatigue recovery because stress often increases the amount of free radical damage. Vitamin C is also necessary for the stabilization of cortisol, which explains why the adrenal glands contain the highest concentrations of vitamin C in the body.

3.  Exercise

When you’re feeling stressed and exhausted, exercise may be the last thing you want to do – but don’t let that stop you! Exercise is a key part of adrenal fatigue recovery for a number of reasons. First, breathing rapidly is how your body expels volatile gases which can become harmful. The increased blood flow that comes with exercise helps to prevent plaque build-up in the arteries. Exercise also normalizes cortisol levels, delivers more oxygen to the brain, and decreases depression, which is common for those with adrenal fatigue. Wondering what exercises are best for adrenal fatigue? Look no further - Click here to find out!

4.  Decrease Sugar

We’ve all had moments of weakness when we’re feeling tired after a long day and reach for the foods that we probably shouldn’t – candy, ice cream, soda, or fast food. When we’re exhausted, we tend to reach for easy, sugary foods to keep us going. The fact is, when sugar is consumed in excess, you’re causing stress to your adrenals. Sugar causes spikes and crashes in blood sugar, which can lead to more cravings for sugar and/or other stimulants like caffeine.  

However, sugar isn’t just found in sweet treats and fast food. Look out for sugar hidden in granola, ketchup, salad dressing, sports drinks, yogurt, and fruit juices. Instead of reaching for sugar when you feel tired and stressed, try to get your carbohydrates from beans, vegetables, and whole grains including wild rice and quinoa. Berries are also a great substitute if you’re fighting cravings for a treat.

5.  Hydration

Adrenal fatigue is closely linked to hydration. The adrenal glands produce aldosterone, a hormone in charge of regulating water levels and making sure you stay hydrated. Adrenal fatigue interferes with the adrenal’s ability to produce hormones and can lead to dehydration, which makes it extremely important to make sure you’re drinking enough water. That said, the volume of water isn’t the only thing that matters. You’ll also want to make sure you’re drinking high-quality water, rich in minerals. This might mean that tap water isn’t the best option, depending on where you live. To improve the quality of your water, you can buy mineral drops to add into your water. We also recommend investing in a high quality water filtration system, such as a Big Berkey Water Filtration System.

6.  Decrease Stress

Stress plays a big role in adrenal fatigue. Chronic stress can overwork your adrenal glands so much that they may not be able to produce enough cortisol, resulting in adrenal insufficiency. If meditation is a somewhat foreign concept that sounds a little too ‘foo-foo’ for you – we hear ya, but we promise it’s not as weird as it may sound. Meditation does not have to include a spiritual aspect at all if that’s not your thing. Meditation does, however, significantly decrease stress levels. To begin meditating, sit in a comfortable position and take deep, slow breaths. To keep your mind quiet, count 5 seconds as you breathe in, and 5 seconds as you breathe out. If this isn’t working for you, you may want to try using a guided meditation app like Insight Timer or Headspace.

7.  Essential Oils

Essential oils are one proposed way to aid your adrenal fatigue recovery. Essential oils are made from refining spices and herbs into a purer liquid version. These oils can be used in a variety of ways; adding them to food, diffusing them in your home, or applying them to your skin. There are several essential oils which can help combat adrenal fatigue, including cinnamon bark oil. By applying it to the soles of the feet (diluted in a carrier oil), cinnamon bark oil can help strengthen the endocrine system and help your body regulate the amount of cortisol produced by the adrenal glands. Cinnamon bark oil can also strengthen the nervous system and balance blood sugar levels.  

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