Each and everyday we are calling upon our adrenal glands to help us cope with the wide arrange of physical and psychological stressors- work demands, raising a family, lack of sleep, poor nutrition, excess caffeine consumption, dieting, unresolved emotional stress etc.
Let me be clear about what these glands are. In the human body, we have two adrenal glands. They are triangular in shape and located above the kidneys. These glands help the body cope with stress and among the many hormones that are released by the adrenals, the most commonly known is cortisol.
In addition to cortisol, a lesser known fact is that the adrenals also secrete sex hormones like progesterone, testosterone, estrogen and DHEA. When a woman enters menopause, the severity of her symptoms are often linked to the health of her adrenal glands. If a woman’s adrenal glands are healthy and balanced, she will experience minimal symptoms in the transition. Those women who have long standing adrenal imbalance, tend to suffer greater symptoms like hot flashes, vaginal dryness, mood changes, weight gain, sugar cravings etc. I see this pattern a lot in my practice. Recommending adrenal support in these cases has shown to improve symptoms of menopause while eliminating the need for hormone replacement therapy.
The adrenal glands also affect sleep, energy, temperature, stress coping abilities, mental clarity, immune system function, hormones, libido, food cravings, blood pressure and weight management. As a result of their multiform effects, there can be many signs and symptoms of adrenal imbalance that you may perceive. Our bodies are always trying to speak to us so that we may restore balance. Whether you listen or not is up to you. Be aware that there can be an overlap of signs and symptoms with other conditions, so adrenal imbalance may not be the root cause but it sure can be a contributing factor to your illness.
If you suffer with any of the conditions listed below, know that you can help yourself by getting your adrenal glands assessed and treated to improve outcomes: Arthritis, Allergies, Anxiety, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Fibromylagia, Depression, Anxiety, Weight Gain, Insomnia, Hypotension, Hypothyroidism, Premature Menopause.
Adrenal insufficiency is often an overlooked condition by most medical practitioners. Naturopathic Doctors do a fantastic job at helping patients better understand the role of stress on the body and how to mitigate its effects and support the adrenals for overall well-being. I am hoping to shed some light on these amazing glands by writing this blog. If you would like to get your adrenal glands assessed and properly treated, reach out to book an appointment so we can get started.
In good health,
Dr. Jen, Naturopath