Five steps to naturally recharge your adrenal glands this holiday season

Monday, December 24, 2012 by: Jonathan Benson, staff writer
Tags: adrenal glands, holiday season, recharge

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(NaturalNews) Christmas is right around the corner, which for many people means lots of quality time spent with family and friends; lots of eating and drinking; and a whole lot of exhaustion and lethargy for the millions of people who suffer from adrenal fatigue. A consequence of excess stress, lack of proper rest, poor diet, and various other lifestyle factors, adrenal fatigue can rob you of your energy and motivation, and leave you feeling perpetually tired and weak. But there are some natural solutions you can take to help remedy this epidemic condition and get back your drive in life, especially during this busy holiday season.

1) Go to sleep before 10:30 p.m. whenever possible, and wake up naturally without an alarm clock. A helpful way to think about your adrenal glands is like a set of batteries that energizes your body through the production of hormones like norepinephrine, also known as adrenaline or the "fight-or-flight" hormone; cortisol, which spurs energy and appetite levels while minimizing the immune system's allergic and inflammatory responses; and dehydroepiandrosterone, also known as DHEA, which balances the activity of cortisol, promotes a healthy heart and bones, and regulates the body's response to stress and trauma.

In other words, all throughout the day, these batteries and the hormones they produce supply your body with the energy it needs to survive and adapt to various life situations, as well as absorb the stress, illness, and injury that comes along the way. And in order to maintain this unique ability, the adrenal glands need a chance to rest and recharge, which is why it is crucial to go to sleep before 10:30 p.m. whenever possible, as doing so will allow your hormone system the chance to "cleanse" itself between the critical hours of 11 p.m. and 1 a.m.

And during the holidays when daily schedules are a little bit looser, allowing your body to wake up naturally without an alarm clock can also help your tired adrenal glands to re-energize. You just might be surprised how much more rested you feel as a result of going to bed early and waking up naturally at your body's own pace and rhythm.

2) Focus your attention on love and affection, and 'think with your heart.' For many people, adrenal fatigue results from too much time spent worrying about things, whether they be related to work, family, relationships, or some other life factor. Perpetual stress and negative thoughts have powerful physiological effects that can sap your adrenal glands of their ability to mitigate these harmful thoughts and feelings. So try focusing more on loving other people and showing affection towards others this holiday season, as doing so will help undo the adrenal damage that has already been done, and evoke long-term biochemical changes in your system that will help recharge your adrenals.

3) Avoid sugar, caffeine, and other stimulants that put your body into overdrive. Two of the most powerful killers of proper adrenal gland function are coffee and processed sugars. Caffeine in particular tends to disrupt blood sugar levels and inhibit the normal production of hormones. Sure, it might give you a rapid "high" and make you feel energized for a little while, but this powerful stimulant can actually make adrenal fatigue worse by overstimulating the production of adrenaline and triggering a rapid and uncontrolled firing of neurons in the brain, both processes that put undue stress on the adrenal glands. Instead, try switching to yerba mate rather than coffee; cutting out the refined sugar in exchange for natural sweeteners like stevia leaf extract; and adopting normal sleep patterns, as mentioned previously.

4) Make sure you are getting plenty of vitamins, minerals and 'superfood' nutrients. Another common cause of adrenal fatigue is nutrient deficiency, it tends to accompany the many other bad lifestyle and dietary habits also associated with adrenal fatigue. Because this dysfunction is hormonal in nature, supplementing with adaptogenic herbs like Siberian ginseng, ashwagandha, and rhodiola rosea can actively help reprogram your adrenals to function as they should by temporarily assisting them in their functional duties. Supplementing with whole food-based vitamins, trace mineral-rich sea and earth salts, and various other "superfoods" and superfood-based powders and supplements can help powerfully restore adrenal function and get you back on your feet.

5) Exercise regularly, and expose your skin to natural sunlight. For many people, simply exercising and moving their bodies more in a healthy, stress-free way is enough to stimulate the body's own natural hormone production cycle. Regularly exposing your skin to natural sunlight, which stimulates the production of the vitamin D hormone in the body, is another great way to help fight adrenal fatigue, as vitamin D deficiency is often linked to the various symptoms associated with poor adrenal function.

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