How to cure adrenal fatigue.
 
By James J White


The effects of sleep deprivation are so severe that the subject of not getting enough sleep should never be skimmed over. A surprisingly large percentage of people are not getting the quality and quantity of sleep that they should. The human body has a natural sleep/wake cycle (circadian cycle) that is in time with the sun and the planets. What this basically means is that when the sun sets and it gets dark we should get tired and go to sleep and when the sun rises and it gets light we are designed to wake up and get ready for the day. This is not just humans that work this way, as light has a huge influence over the physiology of all life and nature. When the solar eclipse happened in 1999, birds, horses and many other creatures went to sleep in the middle of the day when the sun eclipsed.

How does this happen?

When light from the sun or artificial light stimulates your skin or eyes your brain and hormonal system think its morning. This will make your adrenal glands secrete the hormone cortisol which will wake you up and prepare your body for the day. Your cortisol levels peak at around 6-9am then drop a little but remain elevated throughout midday to support daily activities. In the afternoon cortisol levels drop significantly, especially as the sun goes down. These decreasing cortisol levels allow the release of melatonin and growth and repair hormones.

If our bodies follow the natural sleep/wake cycle we should start winding down as the sun sets and should fall asleep by about 10pm. Physical repair mostly takes place between 10pm - 2am and after 2am psychogenic (mental) repair takes place.

This is all supposed to happen in an ideal world or at least it did happen in the past. But now with all the artificial light, television, computer games, parties, etc our cortisol levels don't drop as they should towards the end of the day which results in a hormone imbalance and reduced repair hormones being released. Also as we have this artificial light to keep us entertained way past sun set, we only go to bed around 12am or later! This results in not only poor sleep quality but sleep deprivation.

So what are the effects of sleep deprivation? Here is a short paragraph on three parts of the body that are severely effected by sleep deprivation.

Hormonal - A Lack of sleep can cause havoc with hormones and the glands that release them. Not getting enough sleep will increase your cortisol levels and decrease testosterone and growth hormone. The end result of this will be less muscle and more fat. This will get worse as well because your metabolism will have dropped due to having less muscle. It is a major contributor to adrenal fatigue with leads to depression, chronic fatigue syndrome, viral infections, bacterial infections, fungal infections, headaches, weight gain, reduced sex drive, lack of energy and many more.

Physical - The effects of sleep deprivation on your performance is that your performance is severely reduced when your not sleeping correctly. You will not only feel tired and fatigued all day but training at the gym will feel a lot harder than it should do. This will obviously mean that your session will be less effective and you will relate the gym with bad experiences which means you will soon give up going.

Mental - The effects of sleep deprivation on your mental health are probably the most recognizable and worrying. It ranges all the way from not being able to concentrate, getting grumpy and ratty with people for no reason, forgetting things, showing dyslexic tendencies all the way up to hallucinating, dizziness, depression.

So how can you make sure the effects of sleep deprivation doesn't happen to you?

* Make sure your bedroom is pitch black - Light hitting your skin or eyes will disturb your sleep.

* Start winding down at the end of the day - If you begin to turn lights down or off at least 2 hours before you go to bed then your body recognizes this as sun set and time to sleep.

*Go to bed by 10pm and be asleep by 10.30pm. Waking up is less important to address as your body should start to wake up when it needs to, but around 7 is advisable.

* Avoid the consumption of stimulants (caffeine, sugar, cigarettes) after lunch.

* Drink plenty of water. If your body is dehydrated then it treats this as a stress. Stress equals the release of cortisol which wakes you up!

* Unplug all your electrical items for a few nights and see if your sleep improves. If it does you should keep all electrical items as far away from your bed as possible. The low frequency electromagnetic energies can disturb your sleep.

* Try exercising through out the day. This can help you to sleep at night. However if you exercise in the evening and the exercise is intense and longer than 30 minutes this can disrupt your sleep by releasing too much cortisol.


James is a coach at the Dax Moy Personal Training Studios, Islington, where he works with clients to achieve rapid fitness and fat loss results.

To find out more or to contact James with questions related to this article please visithttp://jameswhitepersonaltraining.co.uk

If you are interested in building muscle and burning fat then visit my site at http://build-muscle-burn-fat.com to learn how.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=James_J_White

 
 
By Leigh Charles


So many life events cause stress - both good events and bad ones. A new mate, a new baby, a new house, a new job - all good things that happen to all of us at one time or another. Even though these good things are what we choose to do, we still have to deal with how they affect us. Excitement, happiness, and other positive emotions are often offset with feelings of inadequacy, uncertainty, or worry about how life is changing. This balance of emotions causes stress.

When bad things happen, such as a death, illness, loss of job, divorce, or money concerns the stress level can shoot out of control. These serious worries can make some people very sick and unable to function normally. There are feelings that situations will never improve or that nothing will ever be good again. This stress is some of the most difficult for people to manage.

The most common symptoms of excessive stress is fatigue, stress eating, insomnia, and general lack of motivation to do more than necessary during the day. These symptoms can be light or extremely severe. Those affected severely may be almost debilitated by what they are dealing with.

What would be your first response to either type of stress? Think about it - how have you dealt with these issues in your life before? Based on the common symptoms, one of the most effective responses to stress at any level is exercise. We constantly hear that your body will be more energized if you exercise - helping get rid of fatigue. It's also been proven that people who exercise regularly are able to sleep better at night - helping get rid of insomnia. Focusing on an exercise program can help curb stress eating by pointing your mind toward fitness rather than overeating. Also, it has been shown that individuals who are more physically fit often experience fewer health troubles for a number of reasons.

High stress levels can lower your ability to fight off infections and exercise can help counter-act that problem. On top of the physical benefits of exercise, the mental benefits can be many. Some people exercise to look good. Some people exercise to feel good. Some people exercise at a gym for social reasons. Some people exercise to fill time in their day. The reason people exercise isn't usually important - they will get the physical and mental benefits from it either way.

It's recommended that every person exercises at least three to four times per week for a minimum of 30 minutes. More is better, but this schedule will be a great start if you're not currently active in an exercise program. A mix of different kinds of exercise will keep your body completely fit and also keep you from getting bored. Aerobic combined with weight training and core strengthening is a great combination.

Motivation is often a factor - especially when stress levels are high. There are a few things you can do to help get motivated to get to the gym or exercise at home. To find the best motivation for yourself, though, you need to be very honest as you look for motivation and make decisions about your plan. Will spending the money to go to a gym really make you go? For some, the money won't matter and for some it will. Will getting a personal trainer that you'll be accountable to help you get the process started and sustainable? For some, this works and others don't care about accountability to others. Will joining an exercise class where you bond with other people and make friends help you? Some people really enjoy the social aspects of a class while others like privacy for their routines. So, you get the picture. It really depends on your personality as to what will motivate you the most.

Just remember that some of the benefits of choosing certain options for adding exercise to your life can turn into stress busters. Getting to a gym with a class of people can help you take your mind off your issues. It can also help you bond with others who may have similar situations to deal with. Working with a trainer who has the ability to push you to do things you normally wouldn't do can build confidence and self esteem - what a stress buster that would be!

Another way that exercise helps relieve stress is that it relaxes tight and tense muscles. Over time, you'll become stronger and the stress won't be able to affect your muscles as much as before. Also, most people experience a relaxation response to exercise that lasts for an hour or two. This can definitely be a mood lifting thing. This reduction in tense muscles and addition of relaxation time will go a long way to helping you handle stressful time more effectively.

Self-image is an important factor for everyone. When we're highly stressed, our self-image can suffer. Exercise does help build self confidence by making you just feel better about yourself and how you look. A new focus on a healthier lifestyle often results from just starting an exercise program. For most people this means improving your diet to more healthy choices.

And one final word on getting as much exercise in as possible - don't stop at following your program or routine. Always look for ways you can get in more exercise by taking the stairs or parking far away from the door. Do your own housework. Play ball with your kids in the yard. Join a softball or volleyball team. It's important to get moving! Everyone agrees that exercise is beneficial for both the body and the mind. As a result, it can relax you when other techniques fail. Exercise does take time and it does require discipline, but the benefits are certainly there if you're willing to make it a regular part of your life. Consider all the benefits in addition to stress reduction and go for it!


Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Leigh_Charles

 
 
By Allan Wu


Stress is a part of our daily life and it cannot be avoided. It is a condition arising from several factors such as tension. Medical experts stressed out that it can give rise to different mental and physical problems and therefore must be controlled. Actually, health problems that people encounter are mostly stress related.

Factors of Stress

1. Work related problems - problems with superiors, subordinates, or co-workers

2. Family problems - any problem related to family members such as death or sickness of a family member, unwanted pregnancy of a daughter, etc.

3. Personal problems - personal health, mental, physical or emotional problems

4. Financial problems - any problems involving money

5. Relationship problems - problems with peers, severed family relationships, boy-girl relationships

Symptoms of Stress

1. Sleeplessness - inability to sleep even after a tiresome day

2. Palpitation - heart beats faster than normal and may lead to several heart diseases

3. Irritability - stressed out people gets easily irritated

4. Heart problems - caused by severe or mismanaged stress

5. Mental Illnesses - in severe cases stress may lead to mental breakdown

As mentioned earlier, stress is unavoidable. Fortunately, health experts found several stress management tips and techniques that can help an individual cope up with it easily. However, if possible, it is better to identify first the cause of stress to easily reduce and manage it.

Activities that Reduce Stress

Working out in group

Exercise is a great way to relieve mental, emotional and physical tensions. However, it will be more fun and effective when done with friends or groups. Exercise promotes better blood and oxygen circulation in the body and therefore helps an individual attain a clear mind.

Engage in sports

Sports are a well known stress buster. Playing any kind of sports makes an individual focus on the game thus developing concentration. Sports involving physical activities are also good forms of exercise.

Watch an entertainment

Entertainment helps an individual forget about problems. Watching movies at home or at theaters are also good stress busters. Comedy shows are also one of the best remedies for any tensions in life. Laughing relaxes the mind of stressed out people.

Form a hobby

Hobbies are good past times and make any individual forget about any problems. An individual needs to divert his attention to activities that helps reduce stress and forming a hobby is one.

Balanced diet and healthy lifestyle

Being sick is stressful and to avoid sickness an individual is suggested to take a balanced diet and a healthy lifestyle.


Allan enjoys writing up on a variety of subjects. Other than the above topic, he also likes to set up sites on different topics. Do check out his new site which covers useful information on electric train sets.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Allan_Wu

 
Adrenal Burnout 02/08/2010
 
By Kirsten Jones


Adrenal burnout has become a common disorder in today's stressed out, over-worked, emotionally exhausted society. As more and more people appear to suffer from perpetual fatigue, experiencing physical, mental, and chemical stress; affecting the body's chemistry on a cellular level and it is the cells in the adrenal glands that take the brunt of these stresses. All illnesses start with fatigue. The body is like a new car with power steering, power brakes and power windows. When the power goes down, the entire car stops working right. Burnout is a serious medical problem, although symptoms may be vague and unrelated to a specific disease. The adrenal glands, which produce stress hormones, are affected by xenobiotic compounds (chemical compounds that are foreign to a living organism) more than any other organ.

Over the years, prolonged episodes of stress can cause the adrenals to become fatigued and are unable to regulate all the constituents of a healthy body. Sometimes the adrenals, in a weakened state, are referred to as insufficient, and as the progression of adrenal breakdown continues, it leads to adrenal burnout as termed by the late Dr. Paul Eck who researched adrenal function and tissue analysis for decades. 
Adrenal Burnout is a very debilitating malady that can cause life-changing disruption. In severe cases the adrenal activity is so acutely diminished that people have difficulty getting out of bed for more than a few hours per day. In each increment of reduction in adrenal function, every organ and system in the body is more profoundly affected. Changes can occur in the carbohydrate, protein and fat metabolism, fluid and electrolyte balance, heart and cardiovascular system, and even the sex drive.

Prolonged stress keeps the body in a constant and heightened fight or flight' state; if allowed to continue it would eventually compromise the adrenal function. The adrenals are the glands that sit near the top of each kidney. The inner part (the medulla) secretes hormones, including adrenaline and corticosteroid that control blood pressure, heart rate and sweating. They also act as chemical messengers; initiate immune responses; regulate blood sugar levels and produce much of the digestive juices used in breaking down foods. As they respond to stress the hormones raise blood sugar and blood pressure, and promote energy production. Adrenalin or epinephrine are used in emergencies, when the adrenals become depleted, the body is unable to handle stress and this can lead to serious illness.

Symptoms of adrenal burnout can be weight gain, chronic infection especially respiratory problems such as influenza, bronchitis or pneumonia; impaired digestion, allergies, high blood pressure; high and low blood sugar levels, cravings for sweets; multiple chemical sensitivities, PMS; irritability and depression and even anxiety may occur. 
The condition is also called adrenal hypofunction, exhaustion or insufficiency. Unlike fatigue, energy levels do not return after a good nights rest; it is a common misconception that the body is unable to regenerate energy during slumber; waking up tired after 8-10 hours of sleep is a primary symptom of burnout, like a dead battery, the body cannot recharge itself during sleep. Burnout is a more serious derangement of the body's energy system. 
Adrenal burnout syndrome is rarely diagnosed by physicians and can be wrongly identified as Addison's disease which doctors consider incurable. However recovery from adrenal burnout is definitely possible. 
Burnout can develop slowly or may be caused by a single trauma. It was famously noted that John F. Kennedy experienced burnout during World War II when his patrol boat was rammed by a Japanese destroyer, killing most of the crew. He never recovered from the shock. For the rest of his life, he needed replacement adrenal hormones. If he had found the right practitioner, perhaps they would not have been needed.

A disproportionate amount of stress can be an important cause of burnout which can be derived from many sources. Chemical toxicity and nutritional depletion are among the physical causes; Mental, emotional or spiritual stress can be a major factor and overwork, financial and family problems; noise in the cities and electromagnetic pollution; mobile phones, microwave towers and household or workplace appliances that emanate strong electrical fields. 
Nutritional Deficiencies are also a common cause. When the body is under stress, there is a greater need for nutrients. Carbohydrates, when excessive in the diet, stress the adrenals. Diets low in protein may also create deficiencies. Inadequate or poor quality water affects oxygenation of the tissues. 
Most diets are deficient in nutrients that are required by the adrenals. These include B-complex vitamins, vitamins A, C and E, manganese, zinc, chromium, selenium and other and other trace elements. The majority of cheap supermarket food in today's consumer society is grown in depleted soils. Further processing and refining reduces nutrients even more. Bad habits like eating in the car or while on the run can further diminish the value derived from food. Also, allergic reactions to foods such as wheat and dairy products can damage the intestines and reduce the absorption of nutrients. 
Toxic metals and chemicals can also contribute to adrenal burnout; as exposure to a multitude of chemicals in the air, water and food is becoming increasingly prevalent in today's society. Dental materials; skin contact with chemicals; over-the-counter and prescribed medications are also conducive to the body's toxic load. 
Toxins can be generated within the body due to impaired digestion. When food is not properly digested, it either ferments or rots in the intestines, producing many harmful substances that are absorbed back into the body.

Chronic infections can also purvey to the toxic load. For many, the elimination organs refrain from functioning at optimal levels; resulting in a build up of toxic substances within the body; leading to adrenal burnout and many other health conditions. 
Many stimulants such as caffeine, sugar and alcohol can damage the adrenals as they incite the glands into action. Less obvious stimulants can include anger, rage, arguing, hatred, loud music, the news and movies full of suspense; vigorous exercise, sexual preoccupations and the use of stimulants. Artificial stimulants can appear alluring in the midst of fatigue, providing a temporary energy surge or buzz. It is an appeal of the drug culture, both legal and recreational.

Unhealthy responses to stress such as worrying, becoming angry or afraid can induce a burnout. Particularly high strung, nervous individuals and those with very active minds are especially prone to adrenal burnout. Unfortunately, many with adrenal burnout function on anger and resentment. These act as adrenal stimulants, providing a negative energy with which to function. 
Secondary to adrenal exhaustion are glandular imbalances, hyperthyroidism and more often hypothyroidism. The adrenal glands produce estrogens and progesterone, the main source of hormones post-menopause. Premenstrual syndrome and hot flushes are also indicative to weakened adrenal glands. 
The side effects of adrenal burnout can be depression and apathy to friends, family and work. Anxiety and Irritability can also occur, as the inability to handle even minor stresses confounds. Compulsiveness and OCD are also associated; precipitating addictions of excessive exercise, sex, loud music or other forms of excitement. The unconscious goal is always the same, to stimulate the adrenals into activity. 
When the adrenals are weak, copper builds up in the body. Elevated copper enhances emotions. Panic attacks, bipolar disorder, mood swings and schizophrenia are related to copper imbalance. As energy levels decline, other toxic metals build up as well. Mercury, cadmium, lead, arsenic, beryllium and others contribute to hundreds of physical and emotional symptoms. Elevated copper and low zinc levels can impair the immune system and chronic infections can occur. The stage is also set for the development of degenerative conditions such as Cancer, heart disease, Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases are end-stage results of toxic accumulation and energy depletion

The condition can be classed as psychological as stress engenders the burnout which in turn affects the emotions and behaviour. But, burnout is biochemical as recovery involves improving emotions and dealing with psychological issues. However, it also involves rebuilding body chemistry because it is a physical condition as well. 
Adrenal burnout is more prevalent with women than men; mainly due to lifestyle changes and sluggish oxidisation rates. However it is just as common in men. Many children are also born with weak adrenals due to their parents nutritional deficiencies. Minimal brain dysfunction, chronic ear or other infections, crib death, failure to thrive, ADHD and anti-social behaviour may all be symptoms of burnout in children. 
Burnout can occur in all groups in society, regardless of occupation, income or educational level. It is recognised that many homeless people are victims of burnout. Accounting for why they may give up hope or be incapable of holding a job or supporting a home. Burnout affects every area of life; family, work and relationships; apathy everyone and everything. Friends, family and employers are often unaware of the condition, which can exacerbate the situation.

Burnout can occur due to a single shock; traumas that occur together or a combination of factors. Whether it is derived from an illness, accident, divorce, overwork or other stress depends very much on one is ability to handle stress, rather than the absolute amount of stress. When the burnout manifests, vital minerals can become depleted and toxic substances replace and become part of the structure of enzymes, body organs and glands. Even after a change of diet, lifestyle, attitudes or behaviour, the toxins can remain. 
Often, burnout does not even develop until several years after a trauma, illness or injury as depleted and damaged cells proliferate. Even though many change their diets and get over their traumas, most people never recover from burnout, or make only a partial recovery.

The accumulation of toxins that occurs as the body and the inability to eliminate them can contribute to burnout. Elimination is very important, however energy is required to release toxins. If the energy system is weak, just fasting or cleansing will not be enough. One must rebuild the entire energy system by balancing body chemistry and providing nutrients as well. A one-month or even six-month cleanse is nowhere near adequate. It can take a year just to replenish one mineral. For those in burnout, extreme detoxification programs such as fasting, raw foods or even chelating agents can be dangerous. This is because the body lacks the vitality to properly eliminate toxins, the eliminative organs are compromised and toxins may be redistributed in vital organs. A gentle, complete program of rebuilding and nourishing the body must accompany any efforts to eliminate toxins. In fact, as vitality improves, toxin elimination will proceed of its own accord.

Diet is an extremely important factor in the road to recovery. Protein should be eaten with every meal, eggs, natural meats and poultry are among the best sources; toasted almond butter, goat's cheese and nuts are other alternatives. It is advised to avoid vegetarian diets. At meal times try and east at least three different vegetables; it is advised to rotate proteins and vegetables, so not to consume the same thing every day. 
Complex carbohydrates are allowed but wheat and spelt should be avoided as sensitivities to gluten (found in rye, barley and oats) can occur. Excellent starches are root vegetables (turnips, parsnips, rutabaga, carrots, onion and celery root), blue corn, brown rice, quinoa and others. 
It is recommended to reduce all sweets and fruit. Avoid sugar and cows milk dairy products (except butter); vegetable oils except for olive oil; isolated soy protein as it is of poor quality and contains many anti-nutrients; junk food; juices as they can be too sugary and can concentrate food toxins, upset blood sugar levels and weaken the adrenals. Use sea salt rather than table salt; eat regular meals of an excellent quality and switch to organic food whenever possible. 
Green foods like kelp, barley grass powder and various coloured vegetables are highly recommended. Cooking with coconut oil is excellent as it aids weight loss, Candida Albicans infection and energy. It is also advised to drink high quality water such as distilled or spring and to avoid tap water.

Food supplements are indispensable. Kelp granules and nutritional yeast are excellent as they are rich sources of nutrients and assist in detoxification. Other nutrients that are important for adrenal activity are vitamins A, B, C, E, pantothenic acid (B5); Zinc, calcium and magnesium; digestive aids such as pancreatin and ox bile and an adrenal glandular substance. Other nutrients may be needed dependent on levels of toxic metals and other symptoms or deficiencies. Hair mineral testing is a reliable way to detect deficiencies within the body. Liquorice is also highly recommended for adrenal burnout or fatigue as it acts on the blood pressure in the body; the active ingredient in liquorice is glycyrrhizinic acid - a plant steroid that mimics one of the prescription drugs given to treat low blood pressure irregularity. Liquorice also enhances the action of corticosteroids, the hormones produced by the adrenal glands. Other naturopathic remedies include goldenseal and Pau d'arco tea which can eradicate Candida; probiotic supplements to rebalance the gut flora and herbs such as milk thistle and dandelion to support the liver.


Article Source: 
http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Kirsten_Jones
 
 
By Andrew Stratton


Stress makes life a lot harder to live. Most people think that the only way to relieve stress is to have money to pay for traditional luxury stress-relievers. What if there was a cheap way to fix your stress? Not only to fix it, but to help prevent it? Well, there are ways to do just that.

Almost every person alive is affected by some level of stress in one way or another. There are many people that think you have to be well-off in order to fight stress. You might see commercials for spas, golf weekends, massages or expensive getaway gear like boats or jets.

What if you found ways to alleviate stress without having to spend the money? Of course it would be nice to do those things, but what if you're not in the position to spend money?

First, you should understand how stress works. When a stressful situation arises, over 1,300 changes can occur in your body. Your blood pressure may rise, your muscles may feel tenser and your digestion might get upset. When you get extremely stressed, your body robs itself of the vital vitamins and minerals that it needs.

It takes a lot of energy to tense and un-tense muscles, to regulate body temperature and to aid in digestion and blood pressure. The vitamin B that your body would normally use for other things gets depleted. Vitamin B helps maintain nerves and brain cells.

Getting enough vitamin B will help you think logically in stressful times and will help your nerves remain calm. Another thing that happens when you get stressed out is that your serotonin level dips to a low point. This makes you crave carbohydrates, a main source of serotonin. This isn't necessarily good because it's what makes you reach for that bowl of potatoes when times are hard. Too much carbohydrate consumption can lead to excessive weight gain.

It is important to try and keep your body at a good level all the time. For vitamins B, C, and the mineral magnesium, you can eat bananas, avocados, fish, chicken and dark green and leafy vegetables. When you're in a particularly stressful situation, grabbing one of these things as a quick, light snack can help your body fight its natural reaction to what's going on.

In addition, make your carb consumption full of complex carbs that are made of whole grains (think brown, not white) and your serotonin levels will be less able to fluctuate in times of trouble.

Doing these things will help you fight the stressful times in your life and the best thing about it is that prevention can be half the battle. If you're able to prevent stress and better cope with it, then the expensive fixes will cause less frustration in your life and with these tools, you can have a less stressful life.


Fight adrenal fatigue, relieve stress and reduce mental burnout with a stress vitamin that is natural and does not have any side effect. To learn more about this product, visit http://www.goodelements.com

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Andrew_Stratton

 
 
By Sam Visnic


What is Cortisol?

Cortisol is the primary stress hormone that is secreted by the 2 cap-sized glands that are located on top of your kidneys in response to stress. It has been described as a low-grade adrenaline.

Mother nature equipped us with this hormone to assist us in situations where we had to “fight-or-flight” such as running from a lion or other predator. Its job is to quickly convert stored energy sources in the body into usable energy to save your life. This is one of its good points. In the old days, there weren’t too many situations in which we were triggered into a fight-or-flight situation. Today, however, stress responses are everywhere. We as a society are constantly stressing out over bills, going to work, relationships, poor food choices, dehydration, overtraining with exercise, lack of adequate sleep, and those are just for starters! Every time the body becomes stressed, cortisol is released from the adrenal glands to combat the stressors on the chemical side.

This chronic elevation in cortisol is extremely detrimental to your health. It has been linked to, but not limited to, adrenal fatigue, hormonal imbalances, heart disease, excessive blood sugar levels, elevated cholesterol, and pretty much anything else you can think of that stress can create in the human body.

Other unwanted side effects of chronically elevated cortisol levels include excess bodyfat, particularly around the midsection, and depressed sex hormone levels, which kills the sex drive in both men and women. It also breaks down muscle tissue, which can really put a hold on your results in the gym.

Cortisol is naturally secreted in the body on a pretty set schedule throughout the day. It peaks at about 8am to get you out of bed and ready to start your day. Throughout the day, cortisol levels begin to drop off and reach their lowest at about 8-10 pm so that you can fall asleep. A cortisol rhythm that is disrupted by chronic stress, both mentally and physically, can impair your ability to fall asleep or even stay asleep.

I have been able to assist many of my clients improve their sleep consistency and quality simply by cutting their stress levels down, and using the tips that I am about to give you. The following tips will assist you in decreasing your cortisol levels and allow you to improve your health and achieve your ideal body.

Ways to Reduce your Cortisol:

1. Use cortisol reduction supplements: I use a variety of herbs in my clinic to reduce cortisol at peak times. Some of my favorites include: ashwaghanda, phosphatidylserine, and rhodiola rosea.

2. Eat at regular intervals throughout the day: Avoid skipping meals, as this will create a cortisol release.

3. Eat right for your Metabolic Type: Excessive carbohydrate intake creates cortisol release in response to constantly elevated insulin levels. Find out your metabolic type and eat consistently with it.

4. Utilize stress reduction techniques at peak cortisol times: Neuro-linguistic Programming, meditation, self-hypnosis, or simply lying on the floor doing belly breathing for 10-15 minutes can work wonders at reducing stress and thus cortisol levels.

5. Get to bed on time: Get to bed by 10:30 pm at the latest.

6. Avoid stimulants: Stay away from energy drinks that contain ephedra-like compounds and caffeine. Stimulants shift the body into sympathetic dominance, ie. "fight or flight". Stimulants can also disrupt your sleeping patterns. If you must have your daily coffee, be sure that you do not drink any after 12 noon.

7. Keep your workouts under 1 hour: At the 1 hour mark, your testosterone levels begin to decline and cortisol levels rise. Forty-five minute workouts are even better.

8. Do not overtrain: Strength coach Charles Poliquin recommends not training more than 2 days in a row. Doing so will simply overtax the hormonal system and therefore increase cortisol levels. Listen to your body. If you do not feel recovered from your previous workout, simply take an extra day off or reduce the number of sets you perform in your workout.


Sam Visnic is a C.H.E.K. Practitioner, Nutrition Coach, and certified NLP Practitioner who specializes in providing safe and effective corrective exercise solutions for back pain sufferers. For his free special reports, articles, and newsletter, visit http://www.EndMyBackPain.com

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Sam_Visnic

 
 
By Mark Rosenberg, M.D.


No one knows your body better than you do. Occasionally, I will treat a patient who is experiencing a variety of symptoms without an obvious cause. Unfortunately, some doctors tell patients it is "all in their heads" when test results fail to reveal a specific problem. This is often the case in people who suffer from adrenal exhaustion. Traditional tests may not detect small changes in hormone levels, yet symptoms persist. I will explain how to recognize adrenal exhaustion and provide some solutions for living with this condition.

What Causes Adrenal Exhaustion?

The adrenals are two small glands near the kidneys. They produce a variety of hormones, like cortisol, adrenaline and DHEA, which help you cope with day-to-day events. Most of you will be familiar with adrenaline, also known as the "fight or flight" hormone. Adrenaline prepares your body to respond to stressful situations by either solving problems on the spot or quickly removing you from danger. For example, you see a small child about to step in front of a car. A rush of adrenaline gives your body the speed and agility to quickly whisk the child out of harm's way.

We all tap into our body's supply of adrenaline from time to time. Certain people, however, may be under so much stress that they burn through adrenaline faster than it can be replenished. When adrenaline levels are depleted, other hormones must adapt, and soon the whole system is topsy turvy. Stress that depletes adrenaline is often chronic, perhaps due to your job, an unmanageable schedule or constant anxiety. For many women, the hormonal changes accompanying pre-menopause can trigger adrenal exhaustion.

Symptoms of adrenal exhaustion are often confused with other conditions, such as depression, chronic fatigue syndrome or fibromyalgia. In fact, common symptoms include feeling tired and feeling depressed. Other symptoms reported by patients are sleep disturbances, body aches and digestive problems. If your doctor rules out other specific conditions, such as the ones mentioned above, you may be suffering from adrenal exhaustion.

How to Cope

It is possible to restore balance to your adrenal glands through natural lifestyle changes. You must address the issue from every angle.

First, you may need to make some big changes to manage stress. Most patients can pinpoint their source of stress, and this is the first step to health. Change your routine, look for a new job, practice stress-reduction techniques, or stop spending time with people who sap your positive energy. Equally important to reducing external stressors is reducing the stress you put upon yourself internally. Banishing negative thoughts and replacing them with a positive mantra is one smart strategy. Many people find that counseling helps them change their attitude and put a stop to negative self talk.

Dietary changes can make an impact on your body's hormonal balance. Strive to eat natural, unprocessed foods. Eliminate added sugar and reduce your intake of white carbohydrates as much as possible. Instead, include protein in every meal and eat plenty of fruit and vegetables. Caffeine can wreak havoc on your adrenal glands, so you might consider weaning yourself off of coffee and tea. Drink decaf and rely on 7 to 8 hours of sleep to keep energy levels up. Regular, moderate exercise is another proven way to maintain energy. It also improves your mood and motivates you to eat healthfully.

Vitamin supplements are important for nutritional support, as well. A multiple vitamin is good for starters. Look for high-quality brands that contain plenty of vitamin C, B vitamins, zinc and magnesium. That's why I recommend taking a daily multi-vitamin to every one of my patients.

Some herbs can support healthy hormone levels, too. Licorice root extract may mimic the effects of cortisol. Start with a quarter teaspoon each day and slowly work up to three times a day. If you have high blood pressure, you should not take this herb. Siberian ginseng may contain a precursor to the hormone, DHEA. Take 100 mg twice a day before 3 P.M. so that it does not interfere with sleep.

Adrenal exhaustion can be frustrating, especially when doctors are uncertain about the proper diagnosis. See a specialist in hormone therapy or an endocrinologist. Most importantly, listen to your body. You have the power to make changes that will positively impact your health.


Mark Rosenberg, M.D
Institute For Healthy Aging

http://www.vitalmaxvitamins.com 
http://www.vitalmaxvitamins.com/blog

Article Source: 
http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Mark_Rosenberg,_M.D.
 
 
By Diane Winter


We experience stress whenever we feel that the demand for us to do or react to something is more than what we can bear. Managing everyday stress is very important because our health depends so much on how we take and handle it.

Stress is often interpreted by most people as negative; it causes psychological fatigue that can even lead to physical illness. On the other hand, stress actually becomes an opportunity for us to vent out our pent-up energy and explore ways to manage it.

But before you begin managing stress, you must first be able to identify its causes. Your efforts to deal with stress will only be successful once you know what stresses you in the first place. Is it the pressure of meeting deadlines or quotas when at work? Is it a recent or an ongoing argument with a spouse or a loved one? Is it a threatening situation?

Depending on what your stressors are, there are innumerable ways to manage them. Following are the more general ones: 


  1. Eat healthy and get sufficient sleep. This tip may be a dead duck, but it works, nonetheless. Having a balanced diet doesn't make you feel bloated, and sleeping a full 6 to 8 hours a day refreshes your mind and body.
  2. Exercise. It is a very healthy relief to stress because moving shakes off your tension. Also, exercise helps you to be in good shape to combat fatigue, thus, it makes you feel better.
  3. Meditate. This can be as methodical as Yoga and Tai Chi, or as freely as just being still and staring blankly for several minutes.
  4. Breathe in rhythms. Since you breathe all the time, you can learn to control your breaths to feel calm. Avoid shallow breathing when in a stressful situation. Breathe in deeply, hold for a few seconds, and slowly breathe out. Do it repeatedly for 5 to 10 minutes everyday. This is absolutely healthy, unlike smoking.
  5. Set realistic and attainable goals. It's all right to take challenges and risks, but don't let them get the best of you. Make sure you take tasks that are well within your capabilities.
  6. Resolve your conflicts and issues with other people. Holding grudges adds to stress. Learn to be more forgiving and try to work out a solution to the conflict. This helps you put the stress of the argument behind you and move on.
  7. Prepare yourself for events that you know can be stressful. May it be overtime work or an aggravating situation, take things in as they come. Try your best not to react negatively.
  8. Welcome change as positive challenge, not threat. When change is introduced to your routine, don't worry about adjusting. Look at it as something new to learn.
  9. Don't be bothered with things beyond your control.
  10. Have a support system. You can lean on others when stress arises. Those people may be your family, your friends, professionals, or a peer group in organizations.


Ultimately, how you handle stress makes a difference.


To learn more about how to deal with stress visit also bamboo wind chimes, where you can find this and a lot more tips and advice on how butterfly wind chimes can bring calm and peace to your home helping you to relieve stress.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Diane_Winter

 
 
By Diane Winter


We experience stress whenever we feel that the demand for us to do or react to something is more than what we can bear. Managing everyday stress is very important because our health depends so much on how we take and handle it.

Stress is often interpreted by most people as negative; it causes psychological fatigue that can even lead to physical illness. On the other hand, stress actually becomes an opportunity for us to vent out our pent-up energy and explore ways to manage it.

But before you begin managing stress, you must first be able to identify its causes. Your efforts to deal with stress will only be successful once you know what stresses you in the first place. Is it the pressure of meeting deadlines or quotas when at work? Is it a recent or an ongoing argument with a spouse or a loved one? Is it a threatening situation?

Depending on what your stressors are, there are innumerable ways to manage them. Following are the more general ones: 


  1. Eat healthy and get sufficient sleep. This tip may be a dead duck, but it works, nonetheless. Having a balanced diet doesn't make you feel bloated, and sleeping a full 6 to 8 hours a day refreshes your mind and body.
  2. Exercise. It is a very healthy relief to stress because moving shakes off your tension. Also, exercise helps you to be in good shape to combat fatigue, thus, it makes you feel better.
  3. Meditate. This can be as methodical as Yoga and Tai Chi, or as freely as just being still and staring blankly for several minutes.
  4. Breathe in rhythms. Since you breathe all the time, you can learn to control your breaths to feel calm. Avoid shallow breathing when in a stressful situation. Breathe in deeply, hold for a few seconds, and slowly breathe out. Do it repeatedly for 5 to 10 minutes everyday. This is absolutely healthy, unlike smoking.
  5. Set realistic and attainable goals. It's all right to take challenges and risks, but don't let them get the best of you. Make sure you take tasks that are well within your capabilities.
  6. Resolve your conflicts and issues with other people. Holding grudges adds to stress. Learn to be more forgiving and try to work out a solution to the conflict. This helps you put the stress of the argument behind you and move on.
  7. Prepare yourself for events that you know can be stressful. May it be overtime work or an aggravating situation, take things in as they come. Try your best not to react negatively.
  8. Welcome change as positive challenge, not threat. When change is introduced to your routine, don't worry about adjusting. Look at it as something new to learn.
  9. Don't be bothered with things beyond your control.
  10. Have a support system. You can lean on others when stress arises. Those people may be your family, your friends, professionals, or a peer group in organizations.


Ultimately, how you handle stress makes a difference.


To learn more about how to deal with stress visit also bamboo wind chimes, where you can find this and a lot more tips and advice on how butterfly wind chimes can bring calm and peace to your home helping you to relieve stress.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Diane_Winter

 
 
By Laura McCallum


Knowing the most common causes of fatigue can help you to figure out what is standing in your way of great health and vitality. What are they? And what impact does this have on your health? Find out here.

What are the most common causes of fatigue today? First of all, let's define what is fatigue? Fatigue has been described as a state of exhaustion, tiredness, or lethargy. It can be either physical or mental, or a combination of both. It is not the same as drowsiness, which is a tendency to fall asleep, although you may be fatigued and drowsy at the same time. Fatigue is pretty common nowadays. Most of us have experienced it at some point in our life, and we can manage it, but for some of us, fatigue interferes with our normal quality of life. If this is true of us, we may need to find out what are the most common causes of fatigue, to see if we can get our health and vitality back!

When you can't keep up with your normal routine due to lack of energy, you are probably suffering from one or more of the most common causes of fatigue. If you cannot keep up with your physical routine because you are too tired to carry it out, then you are likely suffering from physical fatigue. If you are having trouble focusing your thoughts or staying awake, then you are likely dealing with emotional fatigue. Any combinations of the above may be manifest as both physical and emotional fatigue. If just reading about it is making you fatigued, read on! There is light at the end of this tunnel. The most common causes of fatigue may be traced to our routine, or our habits in everyday life. So they may be a reflection of our lifestyle, or have emotional or medical aspects to them, or a combination of these factors.

The most common causes of fatigue may be classified as either Physical or Emotional.

The Most Common Causes of Fatigue that are Physical Include: 


  • Stress
  • Depression
  • Grief
  • Extreme physical activity
  • Athletic overtraining
  • Lack of sleep- shift work, night work,
  • Sleep disturbances- insomnia, jetlag, sleep apnea
  • Vitamin or Mineral Deficiencies - Iron (anemia), B12, low Potassium or Magnesium
  • Heat Poisoning or Heatstroke
  • Food poisoning
  • Blood loss
  • Medical treatments, for example radiotherapy or chemotherapy for cancer
  • Trauma
  • Multitasking/overwork
  • Too much caffeine
  • Food allergies
  • Processed/fast food diet
  • Malnutrition
  • Alcohol abuse
  • Sedentary lifestyle/lack of exercise
  • Obesity
  • Pregnancy
  • Surgical recovery
  • Toxic/ poison overload
  • Adrenal fatigue
  • Low glutathione levels
  • Chronic physical pain
  • Not eating enough- skipping meals
  • Illness - infection or disease that you may know about, or may be undiagnosed may be some of the most common causes of fatigue.
  • Medications - there are several medications that can contribute to the most common causes of fatigue.


The second category of the most common causes of fatigue are emotional.

Here are the Most Common Causes of Fatigue That Are Emotional:



  • Stress/anxiety
  • Overstimulation
  • Understimulation
  • Information overload
  • Boredom
  • Depression
  • Fear
  • Grief
  • Overachieving
  • Overcommitting
  • Lack of sleep/sleep disturbances
  • Anhedonia- lack of desire or pleasure in life


These are some of the most common causes of fatigue. They can be classified as physical and emotional causes. Some of these most common causes of fatigue may cause both physical and mental fatigue, such as the case with grief, depression, stress, and anxiety. You should always seek out the advice of a medical professional when dealing with excessive or prolonged fatigue.


Copyright 2009 Immune Health Solutions: You may freely republish this article, provided the text, author credit, the active links and this copyright notice remain intact. Laura McCallum is the owner of Immune Health Solutions and enjoys writing helpful information about the immune system and glutathione. She regularly consults with medical professionals and published research, and believes in giving her readers the information they need to take charge of their own health. Please see Dealing With Fatigue for help in regaining your energy and vitality on a cellular level.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Laura_McCallum

 

How to Treat Adrenal Fatigue.