Adrenal Stress Test
Are you tired, or getting sick often?
The Adrenal Stress Profile tests your hormone and immune system function. Compromised adrenal and hormone function can result in the following symptoms:
* Anxiety, depression * Sleep disturbances
* Immune system stress * Poor Concentration
* Thinning premature aging skin * Memory Lapses
* Heart disease/arteriosclerosis * Hotflashes
* Irregular menstruation * Night Sweats
* Vaginal dryness * Slow Healing
* Painful intercourse * Reduced Libido
* Lethargy / fatigue * Loss of Appetite
* Unexplained weight gain
Numerous health complaints can be relieved, if not resolved, through hormone testing and therapy. Symptoms are the LAST thing to appear when there is an imbalance in the body. They are the RED LIGHT on your on your engine. Don’t wait to treat the symptoms. Get to the underlying cause. With this simple saliva test, you can test 11 different hormones in the body and determine how your internal system (specifically your adrenal function), is responding to stress.
There are three stages of adrenal fatigue
Stage I – you feel tired, but one more cup of coffee gets you through the day. Coffee is Self Medicating and eventually for many, this stops working over time.
Now you are in stage II. You go to the doctor to get checked out and the doctor can’t find anything. Your adrenal cortisol sum actually shows up as normal, but it is dominating your hormonal pathway. If you do not act on these warning symptoms, it only gets worse leading you to Stage III adrenal exhaustion. This is when you feel severe fatigue and nothing seems to help. You have trouble getting out of bed, you’re exhausted throughout the day, you no longer feel like you have the energy to exercise , you’ve put on weight – mostly around the middle, and you have trouble keeping up with your normal every day activities.
Common Causes Of Adrenal Stress
- Overwork/ physical or mental strain
- Excessive exercise
- Sleep deprivation
- Light-cycle disruption
- Going to sleep late)
- Chronic inflammation
- Chronic infection
- Chronic pain
- Temperature extremes
- Toxic exposure
- Chronic illness
- Chronic-severe allergies
- Nutritional deficiencies
Associated Symptoms And Consequences Of Impaired Adrenals
- Low body temperature
- Unexplained hair loss
- Difficulty building muscle
- Mental depression
- Difficulty gaining weight
- Inability to concentrate
- Excessive hunger
- Tendency towards inflammation
- Moments of confusion
- Poor memory
- Feelings of frustration
- Alternating diarrhea and constipation
- auto-immune hepatitis
- auto-immune diseases
- Palpitations [heart fluttering]
- Dizziness that occurs upon standing
- Poor resistance to infections
- Low blood pressure
- Food and/or inhalant allergies
- Craving for sweets
- Dry and thin skin
- Scanty perspiration
- Alcohol intolerance
Functions of DHEA
- Functions as an androgen (a male hormone) with anabolic activity. Anabolic refers to the building or synthesis of tissues.
- Is a precursor that is converted to testosterone (a male hormone). Is a precursor to estrogen (a female anabolic hormone)
- Reverses immune suppression caused by excess cortisol levels, thereby improving resistance against viruses, bacteria and Candida albicans, parasites, allergies, and cancer.
- Stimulates bone deposition and remodeling to prevent osteoporosis.
- Improves cardiovascular status by lowering total cholesterol and LDL levels, thereby lessening incidences of heart attack.
- Increases muscle mass. Decreases percentage of body fat.
- Involved in the thyroid gland’s conversion of the less active T4 to the more active T3.
- Reverses many of the unfavorable effects of excess cortisol, creating subsequent improvement in energy/ vitality, sleep, premenstrual symptoms, and mental clarity.
- Accelerates recovery from any kind of acute stress (e.g., insufficient sleep, excessive exercise, mental strain, etc.).
What Cortisol Does
- Mobilizes and increases amino acids, the building blocks of protein, in the blood and liver.
- Stimulates the liver to convert amino acids to glucose, the primary fuel for energy production.
- Stimulates increased glycogen in the liver. Glycogen is the stored form of glucose.
- Mobilizes and increases fatty acids in the blood (from fat cells) to be used as fuel for energy production.
- Counteracts inflammation and allergies.
- Prevents the loss of sodium in urine and thus helps maintain blood volume and blood pressure.
- Maintains resistance to stress (e.g., infections, physical trauma, temperature extremes, emotional trauma, etc.).
- Maintains mood and emotional stability.
- Diminishes cellular utilization of glucose.
- Increases blood sugar levels.
- Decreases protein synthesis.
- Increases protein breakdown that can lead to muscle wasting.
- Causes demineralization of bone that can lead to osteoporosis.
- Interferes with skin regeneration and healing.
- Causes shrinking of lymphatic tissue
- Diminishes lymphocyte numbers and functions
- Lessens SIgA (secretory antibody productions). This immune system suppression may lead to increased susceptibility to allergies, infections, and degenerative disease.
Balancing Your Meals For Blood Sugar Control
To maintain proper adrenal function it is imperative to control your blood sugar levels and the following guidelines will help you do that:
- Eat a small meal or snack every three to four hours.
- Eat within the first hour upon awakening.
- Eat a small snack near bedtime.
- Eat before becoming hungry. If hungry, you have already allowed yourself to run out of fuel [low blood sugar/ hypoglycemia], which places additional stress on the adrenal glands.
An excessive ratio of carbohydrates to protein results in excess secretion of insulin, which often leads to intervals of hypoglycemia. The body, in an attempt to normalize blood sugar, initiates a counter-regulatory process during which the adrenals are stimulated to secrete increased levels of cortisol and adrenalin. It follows that an excessive intake of carbohydrates often leads to excessive secretion of cortisol. This contributes to chronic cortisol depletion and consequently, adrenal exhaustion. Reduced DHEA is an early sign of adrenal exhaustion.
In order to stabilize blood sugar, you must maintain a balance between two hormones, glucagon and insulin, which are produced by the pancreas. Protein in the diet induces the production of glucagon Carbohydrates in the diet induce the production of insulin. Insulin promotes fat (energy) storage. When excess carbohydrates are eaten, the body produces large quantities of insulin and little glucagon. This high level of insulin results in more fat being formed and stored.
When insulin is high and glucagon is low, the adrenals are called upon to produce excess cortisol (see later on in the document what cortisol is all about) as a back-up response to help raise blood sugar in the absence of adequate glucagon. This occurs at the expense of the adrenal glands, contributing to adrenal exhaustion.
Balance Your Meals
The optimal level of insulin to glucagon is achieved by a diet that contains carbohydrates balanced with proteins in a ratio of approximately two to one, that is, approximately two grams of carbohydrate per gram of protein and gram of fat per meal or snack.
The Role of Fat
A small amount [3/4 tsp. to 1 tsp.] of fat (butter) or cold pressed vegetable or seed oil should be a part of each meal in order to help control the rate of entry of glucose (blood sugar) into the bloodstream.
In order to make balancing this glycemic control diet easier, you can purchase books containing nutritive value charts, as well as ones containing a glycemic index These charts will enable you to quickly locate foods you would like to eat, and help determine whether they are in appropriate balance for your meals.
Making the Most of Meal Balancing
As there is no exact dietary balance that applies to all people, it is critical to understand each person’s role in the development of an ideal eating plan. In order to determine how well a blood sugar balanced diet is working, one must pay attention to one’s own body.
For example, if you feel mentally and physically alert throughout the day, this is generally a good sign that you are eating frequently enough and in the right balance. Eating small, carefully balanced meals every 4-5 hours will preclude hunger and fatigue in most people. It is up to each person to become aware of how they respond to the meals they eat. A properly balanced meal with good digestion and absorption should sustain mental and physical energy for 4-6 hours.