Adrenal Fatigue Update

I’ve been following basic guidelines to heal adrenal fatigue for the past few weeks, with good results.

I’m getting more sleep, avoiding stress, working 8-9 hours per day only, and eating healthy whole food at regular intervals.

I’m starting to notice now that when I have extra caffeine, gluten or sugar it has a negative impact on me. I’ve cut down to one cup of coffee in the morning and that’s working well.

The Paleo diet really works well for adrenal support since it’s based on whole foods. I fell off the wagon for a bit but am getting back into the habit now. I just feel so much better on that diet. I’m really reactive to dairy and gluten now – even when the gluten is an additive. Hopefully that means my gut is healing. I’m still having small amounts of potato (no skin) and white rice.

Even with my adrenal fatigue, I still haven’t gotten the cold or flu since I started low carb back in March!!! I really think cutting out the gluten has improved my immune system – maybe my body can fight viruses better now that I don’t have chronic acid reflux.

I still don’t have much energy but it’s improving. From what I’ve read, it takes a minimum of 3 months to recover and in my case, probably a couple of years. So I’ll just focus on stress reduction and healthy habits and I’ll get there eventually. I am encouraged by my improvement so far.

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Adrenal Fatigue – The Path Back

Been making some progress readjusting my lifestyle in regard to adrenal fatigue with promising results.

Luckily my circadian cycle has improved as I work a 7 am to 4 pm shift. So I can get to bed early and wake up early, with some afternoon sun after I leave work. I already have yellow tinted glasses so that helps with artificial light.

My biggest challenge with sleep is my circulation – waking up periodically with body parts either painful, numb or cramping. (I’m already taking a lot of supplements including magnesium & potassium). My toes keep turning different colors and not sure if it’s Renauds or just poor blood flow. Standing, walking etc really helps but unfortunately I am still exhausted. I’ve been able to do 5-10 min walking daily now and some light housework which helps.

Working hard on stress management. Luckily my new role at work is great and my team is supportive. Really trying to work only 8-9 hours per day.

Food wise, I slipped back into old habits after my big carb refeed and gained 10 pounds – lost 2 of those pounds again now. It was worth it to get my thyroid back on track – pretty normal again. Back to a more Paleo diet and moderate carb.

I think I will try adding goat cheese back in since I am allergic to dairy (cow) rather than lactose intolerant. Since my Whole30 cleanse, I now can’t tolerate hummus either. So my gut is definitely healing. Trying to cut back on antihistamines also. Unfortunately I do react a little to whey protein, but those Quest bars are so convenient!! Looking for a replacement.

Still having some coffee, trying to cut it down to 1 cup per day without success. But overall seeing some improvement. Less hot flashes for one thing! My leptin situation / blood sugar has improved although I am eating more frequently. I’ll get as far as I can on my own and then probably visit a Functional Medicine doctor for additional support.

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Autumn Capsule Wardrobe

Due to my recent self-diagnosis of adrenal fatigue, I decided to make my fall wardrobe super simple.

Most of these items are a carry-over from previous seasons in neutral colors. Since I live in coastal Southern California, I can just add a cardigan to a short-sleeved top or dress to convert it to an “autumn” outfit.

This year I added a scarf, necklace, a couple tops and 2 dresses in shades of wine, dark red or cinnamon. The scarf & necklace are multicolor.

My wardrobe is mostly dresses as they are a ready-to-go outfit – less of a decision in the morning…

10 dresses, mostly neutrals
Slacks: black, beige, gray
Skirts: black, black/white glen plaid, khaki
Shoes: Black wedges, brown wedges, black heels, black booties, black ballet flats, gold ballet flats
10 tops, mostly solid colors
Black and brown handbags (satchels)
Teal silk & 2 multicolor autumn scarves
Loose jeans & skinny jeans
Khaki raincoat
Cardigans: black, light gray, cream, charcoal, red

This should make for easy modular dressing with a minimum of stress/decisions – I hope!

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Adrenal Fatigue

I’ve been doing some research online and it looks like I’ve got Stage 3 adrenal fatigue.

A couple of my co-workers seem to have the same issue and one is gluten intolerant also. So we’re on this journey together.

I’ll probably have some labs done but I’m a textbook case. I’m going to back off on any severe dieting and just focus on healthy Paleo eating and stress management for a bit.

Thank goodness I changed to a job that is 75% less stressful a couple months ago. My coworkers are not faring as well.

For the past few years, I was getting colds that lasted a couple months and then turning into bronchitis needing an Advair inhaler, but just realized that I haven’t gotten a cold since going Atkins and then Paleo a little over 6 months ago. So its clearly helping with immune support.

Reading a good book, “Adrenal Fatigue – The 21st Century Stress Syndrome,” by James L. Wilson M.D. I think I will modify their diet advice to be more Paleo, but the book does a good job of describing the syndrome. I think I was at Level 2 for several years. I basically was doing everything I could to kill my adrenals, but now I’m on the right track. Looks like I’ll need to be a bit more patient about weight loss since I think my rapid loss this Spring stressed what was left of my adrenals. It’s healthier to lose more slowly anyway.

UPDATE:

Reading a great audiobook now also, “Tired and Wired,” by Marcelle Pick.

Did the “iris test” for AF and really freaked myself out – my pupil returned to full dilation in only 5 seconds. Not testing well on other measures either. At least this explains my premature hot flashes…

Found out I had misread my Biotin dose in my multi vitamin and it was still too low (it was mg not g). Added 7,500 mcg more daily and that’s making a huge difference – was able to cut my multivitamins from 12 pills to 6 now.

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Pieology – Gluten-Free Pizza

My co-workers and I went to Pieology today for lunch. I gave the gluten-free crust a try.

Verdict – very tasty!! You can get a personal size pizza and they let you choose your own toppings so it was cheese-free as well. I’m not celiac, just gluten intolerant, but the server still changed her gloves and used different sauces/utensils for my marinara sauce & herb butter. I think if you have celiac disease you could be confident eating there.

And it was delicious! I had chicken, bacon and veggies and the chicken was very fresh.

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Epi-Paleo Diet – Update

Still easing into the full Leptin reset. Doing the full 50 grams of protein at breakfast now. I backslid and had added more carbs since I had less appetite but it showed up in the scale. Starch just needs to be a moderation thing for me.

Doing the cold baths daily – I took 2 yesterday because it was around 100 degrees. The lipoma in my leg is getting softer and shrinking more. I had some borderline varicose veins that seem to be shrinking as well.

I got brave one day and added 2 trays of ice. Felt a sharp pain in my arm – kind of a tiny pop- and saw a green bruise forming about 1/2 inch in size. I think I burst a capillary, soooo foregoing the ice and just doing the cold baths. I can’t do a cold shower yet except at the end, which feels great.

Not eating between meals or after 7:30 pm AT ALL now. Feeling more in control. The carbs aren’t helping though – yesterday I got super hungry right at noon and felt I had to eat NOW. I think pretty soon I’ll try to cut back to 40 grams protein and then 30 at breakfast. The whey protein is messing with my sinuses and I want to go back to just eggs and bacon. If I eat a healthier lunch & dinner that will happen faster.

So the last part of the Leptin reset I need to comply with is 50 carbs/day. I’m nowhere near that right now – need to lay off the bananas and grapes for sure. I think next week I’ll start counting carbs.

Once I get done with the reset in November, I think I’ll settle into a Paleo diet 80/20 in a range of 50-75 net carbs. Seems like that’s the best formula for me personally for long-term success.

UPDATE:
Did more research online and it appears I have the symptoms of stage 3 adrenal fatigue. Not at all surprised by this. So I’m backing off on the Leptin protocol and I’ll just do a moderate carb Paleo diet for now. I’ll continue to eat mainly protein at breakfast but if I feel I really need a snack I’ll have nuts or coconut butter. I’ll watch my carbs, but more through good choices rather than actual counting. Just going to focus on eating healthy and reducing stress. I might see if my endocrinologist or gyn can have a hormone lab work up done on me in the near future. I’m sticking with the cold baths though!

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Epi-Paleo Diet – UGH 50 G protein!!

OK, I am loving the Leptin reset so far but my digestive system can’t handle all the required breakfast protein. I can’t digest it all and I’m not even up to 50 g yet. Plus it’s so hard to eat all that food so early in the morning. I’m still basically in transition and not fully on the plan yet.

I don’t want to be dependent on laxatives – the whole point here is to be healthy. So I am switching over to whey protein again for a bit.

I’ll have either a double Primal shake OR 2 Quest almond protein bars, with either 2 eggs OR 4 slices bacon to get up to 50 g. OR 4 eggs, 4 slices bacon and a bar or shake. Still a lot of food!! I never though I could get sick of bacon….

I’ll have to count 50 net carbs/day instead of total carbs, since the fiber in the shakes/bars would comprise most of my daily carb allowance otherwise, and I’ll need some veggies too.

I did some reading and I might be ok with the whey protein despite my dairy allergy, but I’m still concerned about insulin stimulation. Guess it will be OK for 2 months. May have to occasionally do hamburger/eggs for breakfast sometimes to balance it out.

Off to take a cold bath – yay! Die, fat, die!

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