Fatigue? Depression? Weight Gain?
Why you should be paying attention to your adrenals.
By: Dr. Michael Morsillo, B.Sc., N.D.
Do you feel exhausted throughout the day? Have you found any difficulty concentrating or feel “foggy-headed”? Do you find it very easy to gain weight, especially around your abdomen? Do you have any sleep difficulties? Has your immune system been less resilient lately? All of these symptoms can be a sign that your adrenal glands are not functioning optimally. The good news is that the health of your adrenal glands can be assessed and restored naturally!
Your adrenal glands are located on top of your kidneys and they play a very important role in the body. They are an important part of your endocrine (hormonal) system, and have the ability to produce many different hormones – estrogen, testosterone, pregnenolone, aldosterone, adrenaline, cortisol, DHEA. Your adrenal glands are also a key regulator of stress, inflammation, blood pressure, and blood sugar.
Our adrenal glands regulate our stress response, and there is a good and bad side to this response. If you were to encounter a stray dog that was ready to attack you, your brain would send a message to quickly activate your adrenal glands. Your adrenal glands would release a surge of adrenaline to increase your heart rate and blood pressure so that you are better equipped to fight off this dog or run for the hills. This adrenaline surge will last only seconds, after which your adrenal glands will send out a surge of cortisol to prolong this effect. After the stressful situation has been resolved, your body will need time to rest and recover from this response.
There is a negative side to this adrenal response. In our day-to-day lives, we rarely encounter these life-threatening events; however, all of our modern “stressors” that we encounter will regularly activate this response. Being late for work, a fight with your spouse, a negative e-mail, can all potentially trigger our stress response even though they are not life-threatening. What makes this worse is, instead of allowing ourselves to rest and recover from the effects of these stress responses, we typically do just the opposite.
Over time we can find ourselves in a state of excessive adrenaline and cortisol output, and this imbalance can lead to elevated blood pressure, elevated blood sugar levels, weakened immune system, weight gain, water retention, anxiety, insomnia, and so on. Eventually our adrenal glands will become so overwhelmed that they will stop responding. When this occurs, our cortisol levels may plummet, and this is known as “Adrenal Insufficiency” or “Adrenal Fatigue”. At this stage, you will likely begin to experience overwhelming fatigue and exhaustion, depression, poor concentration, and poor memory.
At our Newmarket Naturopathic Clinic, when we suspect the cause of your symptoms could be due to adrenal fatigue, we will use Saliva Cortisol Testing to assess your adrenal function. For patients found to have adrenal fatigue, a protocol of herbal medicines, dietary supplements, and possibly intravenous nutrient therapy will provide dramatic improvements in their symptoms and overall health.
If you are experiencing any of the symptoms mentioned for Adrenal Fatigue, or if you have been suffering from a chronic health condition, you can contact our Newmarket Naturopathic clinic to discuss your testing and treatment options.
Dr. Michael Morsillo is a naturopathic doctor who is passionate about helping others achieve their optimal level of health. Michael maintains a clinical practice in Newmarket, where he focuses on cancer, anxiety, depression, thyroid disorders, detoxification, and weight loss.
For more information or to schedule an appointment:
Call 905-898-1844 (ext. 135) or email firstname.lastname@example.org