The first step healthy adrenal function is to have a full physical exam to rule out disease or other factors. In our experience, women with mild to moderate cases of adrenal dysfunction can see such life changing improvement through the following steps:
- Dietary changes to improve your nutrition and reduce carbohydrates and stimulants. Adding pharmaceutical grade nutritional supplements, and including essential fatty acids from fish oil.
- Stress reduction, including exercise and taking more time for yourself. It’s helpful to make a list of your stressors, especially those that are constant.
- Get more rest. Your body needs time to heal.
Women with more severe symptoms, or those that I call “Flatliners” in my book Is it Me or My Adrenals? have reached complete adrenal dysfunction, and usually need greater intervention and time to heal. At our practice we use the steps outlined above with the added natural support of phosphorylated serines, adaptogenic herbs, sometimes low-dose compounded DHEA, and occasionally deglycyrrhizinated licorice if the person does not have high blood pressure. We personalize the therapy to each woman’s symptoms and test results. We urge you not to self-prescribe these substances, as they can have adverse health effects.
It’s important to remember the role of emotional factors. Stress, pain from past hurts, self-destructive habits such as alcohol, overeating, overwork, and unresolved relationship problems — your past and present emotional responses may serve as an ever-present stressor. Learning to Deal with these problems head on is much more beneficial than trying to overcompensate for the stresses they create.
In all but the most extreme cases, we expect to see dramatic improvement within about four months. For mild to moderate adrenal fatigue the turnaround can be much faster. Remember it took you a long time to get here, it may take a while to see results.