Adrenal Fatigue versus Adrenal Insufficiency. Do you know the difference?
What is Adrenal Fatigue?
The primary symptom is fatigue, but there are others. Waking up groggy, craving sugar and salt, difficulty with stress, fatigue during the day, excess energy at night, and ‘brain fog’ are all considered symptoms of adrenal fatigue.
According to the Mayo Clinic, “the term [adrenal fatigue] often shows up in popular health books and on alternative medicine websites, but it isn't an accepted medical diagnosis.” Scientific research has yet to provide conclusive evidence that adrenal fatigue is real.
What is Adrenal Insufficiency?
Is Adrenal Fatigue Real?We have learned that it is possible for the adrenals to fail to produce enough hormones, though this occurs only in extreme circumstances. Moreover, “[addisons'] disease is not usually apparent until over 90% of the adrenal cortex has been destroyed (1).” With research unable to produce conclusive evidence and the extremes required to cause fatigue in Adrenal Insufficiency, it appears highly unlikely that daily stress could cause adrenal failure or adrenal fatigue. It is more probable that something else is causing the fatigue.
What to do when experiencing fatique
Four common circumstances that can cause fatigue:
- Poor eating habits
- Insufficient rest or sleep
- Emotional stress
- Family or work stress
- Congestive heart failure
- Kidney disease
- Chronic fatigue syndrome
- Depression and anxiety
- Thyroid disorder
What we must understand that our bodies have unique limits. For example, sleep habits that are sufficient for someone else, may not be sufficient for you. Some need six hours of sleep, while others need nine. The same is true for eating habits and tolerable stress levels. Each body, and its’ systems and requirements, is unique. We like to believe we are a machine and can decide our limits, but our bodies decide. The body will inform you of its' limit through the symptom of fatigue.