The adrenal glands are the small glands located right above your kidneys. They are vital to your health as they produce a range of important hormones. Adrenal fatigue or insufficiency can cause an array of symptoms.
The adrenal gland produces epinephrine and norepinephrine (commonly known as adrenaline). These hormones are responsible for that “fight-or-flight” response to a perceived stressful or harmful event or a threat to survival.
Some of the most important functions of epinephrine and norepinephrine include:
1) Speeding up the rate of metabolism of cells as much as 100%
2) Increasing blood pressure
3) Dilating the blood vessels to the heart and skeleton while constricting most other vessels
4) Increasing blood flow to the muscles while decreasing blood flow to organs not in use at the time
5) Causing the liver to release glucose and thus increasing blood glucose levels
6) Decreasing kidney function and increasing urine output
7) Dilating pupils
8) Increasing muscle strength and mental activity (partially due to increased glucose levels)
9) Dilation of bronchial airways (This is why epinephrine injections are given during asthmatic attacks)
10) Breaking down glucose in muscles
So as you can see from this list, when your adrenal glands are not working properly, and you suffer from adrenal fatigue or adrenal insufficiency, you’re prone to all kinds of physical problems,
STRESS FACTORS THAT ACTIVATE THE ADRENAL GLANDS
Almost any type of stress to the body will signal the adrenal glands to produce more cortisol. These can include:
1) Moderate to severe physical pain
2) Extremes in temperature
4) Traumatic accidents (auto accidents, on the job injuries, etc.)
5) Taking epinephrine or nor epinephrine (these are often used in asthma, and in the pain killers you get during your visit to the dentist)
6) Intense anxiety or emotional trauma (problems at work or home, divorce, death in family)
7) Overwork – mental or physical
8) Lack of proper sleep
9) Chronic diseases that wear down the body
10) Pollutants in our air, water, cleansers, deodorants, hair sprays, etc.
11) Pesticide and herbicide exposure
12) Refined foods especially carbohydrates
13) Exposure to substances you’re allergic to
RESTORING YOUR ADRENAL HEALTH, NATURALLY
The first avenue of natural healing is your food. Time your meals and snacks. When your blood sugar drops your adrenal glands work overtime, which can lead to adrenal fatigue.
Eating to support adrenal health
- Use fresh, whole foods, preferably organic, locally grown, seasonal food for meals and snacks.
- Avoid preservatives, added hormones, artificial colors, dyes, and chemicals.
- Include lean protein with each meal and snack to help stabilize blood sugar and stave off cravings for refined sugars and caffeine.
- If you buy prepared food, try to buy it at a health food store or grocery offering natural, whole foods.
- Prepare extra nutritious snacks to have on hand so they are ready and available when you are having cravings.
Light exercise with help maintain healthy cortisol and adrenaline levels. Try walking, stretching, Qi Gong and Yoga.
Adrenal Gland Supplement Suggestions
There are several vitamins and minerals and micronutrients that are essential to restoring adrenal health. Here are some important ones.
Vitamins C, E and all the B vitamins (especially pantothenic acid and B6) help regulate stress hormones.
Magnesium provides energy to the adrenal glands, helping to avoid adrenal insufficiency.
Calcium and trace minerals including zinc, manganese, selenium, and iodine provide calming effects in the body.
See the full range of vitamins and supplements Dr. Springer suggests for adrenal gland health.>>
SUPPLEMENTS FOR ADRENAL HEALTH