Examining the link between Hypothyroidism and Adrenal Fatigue
The quest for more energy and for optimal performance has been pursued by man for almost as long as it has existed. In today’s 21st century, technology-driven world, our lives are like the current day news cycle, 24-7. We live in a world where “unplugging” is increasingly more difficult, and we all feel it.
Because of this, a lot of us can feel a wide array of afflictions that can wear on us on a daily basis. These include but are not limited to, general or extreme fatigue, fluctuating body weight, cravings for bad food and on and on. But what if there is more to the story here? What if these symptoms are not just a sign of stress but instead are symptoms of a condition that in part has been caused by said stress?
Are you familiar with Adrenal Fatigue?
As we’ve learned more about medicine and with information now readily available, we’ve been able to study both eastern and western medicine, conditions like adrenal fatigue have been given more and more spotlight.
So, what is Adrenal Fatigue?
We’ve discussed the symptoms, but the condition more specifically refers to when the adrenal gland is exhausted and is not properly producing hormones needed in our bodies. The result of this is poor eating, sleep, energy, and overall health.
These symptoms and issues can be frustrating and concerning on their own, but worse, is that these issues do not always stop here. Adrenal issues and symptoms may end up causing for worse or more problematic.
As discussed earlier, the main source of issues in adrenal fatigue comes from hormones not being produced. Some of the hormones that the adrenal glands are responsible for have a direct impact on the metabolic processes in your body.
The way this dysfunction can occur stems from our bodies works to access needs and then prioritize them. We have learned a lot about stress in recent years and understanding the effects that it has on your body has become an instrumental part of health in the modern world.
Stress acts as a dangerous double-sided sword as its effects are both physical and emotional. Stress appears to be on the rise on a year over year basis. Let us take a quick look at the symptoms both physical and emotional.
The physical symptoms include low energy, headaches, sick to your stomach, muscle pain, chest pain, insomnia, being sick often, decreased libido, nervousness, dry mouth, and teeth grinding. All of these physical symptoms are forms of tension and the physical manifestation of stress in our body.
The emotional symptoms include moodiness, irritability, frustration, feelings of being overwhelmed and loss of control, inability to relax, feeling self-loathing and low self-esteem, and wanting to be isolated from others.
Both of these groups of symptoms can combine to make a cocktail that will impair how well your brain is functioning. The cognitive symptoms of stress are constant or incessant worrying, racing thoughts, being forgetful and or disoriented, inability to focus, poor judgment, and having an overall feeling of pessimism.
All of this is a long way to say that stress can have an intense and measurable effect on our body. This is why the hormones from our adrenal glands go underproduced in times of high stress. Our body focuses on the more pressing need and thus we get less of the hormones we need to aid in our metabolic process.
An important part of the metabolic process is tied to your thyroid. With hormones being produced at lower levels you can see a development of what is known as hypothyroidism. Hypothyroidism is when there is low activity around the thyroid gland.
The symptoms of this disease are not far off from the aforementioned afflictions. Hypothyroidism symptoms are fatigue and general tiredness, sensitivity to cold, constipation, dry skin, unexpected weight gain, brittle nails, dry skin, enlarged thyroid, high cholesterol, irritability, sexual dysfunction, slow heart rate, or sluggishness.
These symptoms are obviously are not ones you’ll enjoy and really show on a macro level how serious these conditions can be. For hypothyroidism alone, there are more than three million diagnosed cases in the United States each year alone.
Exploring the condition more is important in understanding how it affects a person. Earlier we used the term low activity but more helpful and descriptive is to say that hypothyroidism is when the thyroid gland is not making or producing enough thyroid hormone to keep the body running normally.
At this point, we have walked through the causes, effects, symptoms of adrenal fatigue, stress, and hypothyroidism. We have discovered that they crossover in all three of these areas and we have a better understanding of all of them and how they play a vital role in your health. No matter what stage in this you may be in, it’s now important to understand what this means for your long-term health and what your options are going forward.
For those feeling the effects of stress, the good news is that the cures are all all-natural and as free as advice. Stress’s long-term effects include adrenal fatigue and hypothyroidism but can range to the far more serious including heart disease. Needless to say, stress is important to manage and alleviate.
For stress knowledge is power. It is important for you to understand what triggers your stress. Create a managed workload and make a routine that will keep you on track and more in control. However, despite your best efforts, life will inevitably through you curve balls. Whether it is breathing exercises, meditation, yoga, tea or any other natural coping technique, find what works for you and use it to help you going forward. Your body will thank you for this.
Now let us turn to adrenal fatigue. Adrenal fatigue is not itself a serious condition but as we’ve explored it can certainly develop into a serious situation. There are a wide array of known adrenal related illnesses and they range in seriousness and rest assured you do not want any of them.
Luckily, adrenal fatigue comes with a good amount of options to treat. Most can be put under the umbrella of lifestyle changes and the rest follow the path of natural remedies. The first thing you should do is cut out the harmful substances in your life. These will include alcohol, nicotine, caffeine and things of this nature.
Secondly, you’ll want to take a look at your diet and see how you can make some changes to create a healthy and balanced diet that will aid you in getting the required daily vitamins and minerals that your body needs. Furthermore, you will want to cut back, if not cut out completely, the processed and high or high sugary or salty foods in your diet. Eating clean is always best practice, and if you are struggling with adrenal fatigue, you will want and need to live this best practice.
Lastly, look into vitamins and supplements. Not all will work for you but do some research and try some out until you find the perfect fit that works for your body.
It really can be as simple as cutting out the bad, improving the good, and exploring the health aid options out there.
Hypothyroidism, much like the previous two conditions, can have serious consequences if left untreated. These effects can range but the rule here, like all medical conditions, if you feel something is off, bring it to your doctor and get treatment.
Hypothyroidism is a lack of hormones so unlike the other two afflictions the treatment is a bit less natural or organic. Your body needs these hormones replaced so your doctor will prescribe you a pill to do this. This pill will be a synthetic hormone, known as T4, that will come in the form of a pill that you will take once a day. Once you are on the pill your doctor will work with you to carry on periodic tests to make sure that this will continue to help you going forward.
In the world of health, there are a lot of factors that go into conditions. As we have seen throughout the entirety off this article, conditions can be similar and connected, and can all have big consequences if ignored.
In the case of what we explored today, let us quickly recap how these three work together. Adrenal fatigue is a condition when our body is worn down and the adrenal gland is not working properly to distribute hormones to the rest of your body. Part of the wearing down can come from stress. Continued stress prevents your body from focusing on other issues going on and can be a leading factor in the development in hypothyroidism. This all works together, and it all tells you the same thing, get your body and health in order!
The good news is that you have options. Work on how you handle stress, work on your diet and health plan, and talk with your doctor.