WHAT IS ADRENAL STRESS?
Adrenal stress (or adrenal fatigue) is a state of hormonal imbalance resulting from long-term exposure to stress. When our hormones are imbalanced, we don’t feel or function well.
I learned that one the hard way.
Read more about my journey.
LET’S START WITH THE BASICS
LET’S START WITH THE BASICS
Hormones provide chemical communication between different parts of the body. They regulate many vital functions like metabolism, immunity, sleep, mood, stress, and much more. Each hormone can be thought of as one strand in a much larger web of about 60 hormones. This web of hormones is collectively called the endocrine system.
The endocrine system is akin to a spider web – pulling on one strand affects every hormone’s function. So when one hormone is off, the others feel it and try to adjust to it. This graceful dance of calibration is generally so smooth you don’t even notice it.
Stress hormones are critical, but require an intense hormonal calibration designed to activate possible life-saving functions. Any kind of physical, emotional, and/or mental stress can switch the body into a stress-response mode, whether or not you are actually in danger.
The stress response mode is designed for limited use only. Overuse can imbalance the whole system by pulling too hard on the delicate strands. Our bodies are not wired to thrive with prolonged exposure to stress.
Does adrenal fatigue mean I don’t have enough cortisol?
Let’s clear up the confusion. Cortisol is one of your stress hormones. Adrenal stress is NOT a state of insufficient cortisol production, as the misnomer “adrenal fatigue” implies. What really happens is that the delicate endocrine system (which the adrenals operate in) has been thrown out of rhythm by long-term exposure to stress.
Stress DOES affect your adrenals, but it does NOT actually make your adrenal glands fatigued, tired, collapsed, or burned out. This simple misconception has created an unfortunate chasm in the conversation between conventional medical doctors and alternative and complementary health practitioners.
Are my symptoms telling me my hormones are out of balance?The hormonal imbalance of adrenal stress is not a disease, and you will never receive a diagnosis for it. Adrenal stress is, however, a very real syndrome. In fact, it is one of the most common, yet most overlooked conditions affecting modern mamas.
Mamas with adrenal stress are often constantly exhausted–experiencing the kind of fatigue that doesn’t go away with a few nights of good sleep. They usually have a combination of symptoms that show up in the digestive, immune, nervous, hormonal, and musculoskeletal system. Symptoms vary a lot from person to person.
For a more in-depth look at the symptoms of adrenal stress, check out this article.
Symptoms are the body’s way of communicating with us, but we’re often so focused on simply getting through the day, that we’re likely not listening. Long term, adrenal stress will diminish the quality of life, speed up the aging process, and point you toward chronic illnesses like diabetes and heart disease.
THE PRICE OF OUR FRENETIC LIVES
“How did I get here?” I hear this from mamas all the time.
Frenetic is our new normal. The price to maintain the daily pace of our career, family, and relationships is steep. Our days are filled with constant, low-level stressors that come in the form of text messages, emails, deadlines, toxic relationships and environments, processed foods, inadequate sleep, and an overwhelm of information and choices.
Stress is a ubiquitous part of everyday life–impossible to avoid and ever-increasing.
Most of us aren’t fully aware of how fast we’re burning the candle at both ends in a desperate attempt to juggle everyone’s needs and schedules. But one day we wake up and realize we’ve been tired for months on end, maybe even years. We see that if we don’t change how we’re doing things, things won’t actually change. We won’t be able to operate at our full potential or show up as our best selves for those we love.
Since you’re reading this, we likely have this experience in common. But there’s something more important that we have in common: You too can rebuild a multidimensional vitality that offers you the clarity, creativity, freedom, and power to fundamentally change the way you live and channel your energy.
You deserve to be nourished so that you can reclaim your vitality.
RESOURCES FOR OUR MAMAS
Medicating symptoms is simple. But you’re not here for simple. You understand that it’s time to embrace the work of whole-body wellness because continuing with the old plan hasn’t delivered the robust health and resilience you deserve. Where to start?
Visit the Vital Mamas Articles For Vitality and soak up some inspiration or practical tips on energy cultivation.