6 min read


By Janine Rotter, Director of Fitness Nutrition

Adrenal Fatigue:

Is it real? Do You Have It?

What Are the Signs and How to Treat Them?

And How to Prevent It in The Future! 

If you’ve been experiencing symptoms such as body aches (particularly in the back and chest), lightheadedness, low blood pressure, low blood sugar, or salty junk food cravings then you might want to keep reading!  

Waking up and feeling no incentive and no inspiration to get out of bed and start the day may sound like a normal everyday occurrence. What you may not know though, is that it could be a sign of issues in the inter-workings of your body. You may think you just have sleep issues or that you are worn out and tired. You suddenly feel tired in the middle of the day and just pass it off as too much-accumulated stress.   

No! This way of life shouldn’t be the case and shouldn’t be taken lightly.   

Men and women everywhere tend to overlook these signs.

When in reality, they may be symptoms of a budding medical condition. A medical condition that feeds on a lack of motivation and overwhelming stress.

Today we're talking about Adrenal Fatigue.  

Adrenal fatigue, or hypo-adrenia, is a much more common condition than you might think. The idea is that exhaustion within the adrenal glands causes a lack of cortisol hormone production in the bloodstream, which in turn causes extreme fatigue.  

Let’s take a look at what exactly adrenal fatigue is and why is it so important for us to know the signs today!  

Taking A Look at Adrenal Fatigue as A Medical Condition

Now, let me make this clear, adrenal fatigue is not officially recognized as a medical condition or disease and I've personally had doctors call it BS while other practitioners embrace the conversation.

It is observed as a pseudo-condition that is wildly educated upon but cannot be further proved at this point in time.

However, many medical professionals still advise patients on how to deal with their very real symptoms.

Much like with any other ailments, there are notable symptoms and treatment methods. All of these we will talk about later…  

Some professionals tend to believe that in women adrenal fatigue runs hand in hand with post-menopause stress and accommodation; while others believe that it is a condition simply caused by a malfunction in hormone production (in both men and women) in the liver and various glands.

Either way, it is obvious in the medical world and the everyday world that adrenal fatigue causes real problems for real people; and, it needs a proper solution.  

Spotting the Symptoms  

The symptoms of adrenal fatigue range between a variety of physical and mental aspects; however, there are a few more common signs.

These listed below are what have been seen constant throughout the recorded cases of patients with adrenal fatigue: 

  • Chronic fatigue syndrome 
  • Inability to sleep/insomnia 
  • Trouble finishing tasks 
  • Lingering stress (physical, emotional, and/or mental)  

Each of these symptoms can have a heavy effect on the production of cortisol, as it slows the progression of chemical trade-off.

The proper chemical hormones in the body do not recognize or differentiate the need for cortisol in the adrenal glands; thus, it stops sending and producing it efficiently.

This leads to constant bouts of fatigue, which then leads to the inability to fall asleep and a lack of motivation to get up and be active in the morning.  

As this fatigue begins to spiral downward, it becomes harder to properly finish tasks and goals.

With a lack of motivation and lack of proper rest, the body begins to slowly give out and become heavy and tired...

All. The. Time. 

And sadly, all of these symptoms and physical reactions connect back to the leading symptom of adrenal fatigue, can you guess what that is? 


Dealing with Stress and Adrenal Insufficiency   

As the body encounters everyday bouts of stress and anxiety, the adrenal glands let out a healthy dose of the hormone called cortisol.

Those who have adrenal fatigue, however, have a lack of release of this hormone, causing stress to build to intolerable levels until it cannot be dealt with at all.   

In this situation, it is positive to understand that your body is producing lower levels of cortisol on a daily basis. 

Sufferers can usually aid in relieving a part of this stress by adding mediation, deep breathing, and/or mild exercise to their daily routines, and simply sitting out in the early morning sun for 30 minutes a day.

Your cortisol levels surge when you expose yourself to morning light, so you’re kickstarting this process and helping your body stay on track with its optimal circadian rhythm that will even have you sleeping better.

Having time set aside of clearing the mind and destressing the body, gives off a happy feeling in the brain that releases serotonin. This hormone counteracts the cortisol not being distributed in the body by leaving them happy and content, so there is no focus on unwarranted stress. 

Some other methods include surrounding oneself with essential oils and a peaceful environment. Both seem to also do the trick of shutting off stressful thinking in the brain while also relaxing the tense buildups in the body from lack of good sleep.   

Lesser-Known Symptoms  

Although, it is rather unanimous that the leading cause of adrenal fatigue is stress, there are a few lesser-known symptoms to also look out for. 

 Here is a quick list of those signs: 

  • Body aches (particularly in the back and chest) 
  • Lightheadedness
  • Brain fog
  • Low blood pressure 
  • Low blood sugar 
  • Craving salty snacks constantly
  • Sudden lowered immune system health
  • Joint and muscle pains
  • Newly formed allergies
  • Anxiety / Anxiety attacks and episodes
  • Depression  

Seeking Treatment  

Sadly, adrenal fatigue can be a little hard to treat nowadays. More often than not, destressing methods are used to cope with the condition rather than cure it.  

Successful methods of treating adrenal fatigue: 

  • Practice meditation. We really enjoy the free app, InsightTimer.
  • Yoga. If you're not into yoga, try some light stretches first thing in the morning, mid-afternoon, or right before bed.
  • Deep breathing daily. I have created an UNBOWED Breathing Exercise for you. Do this at least once a day (or during stressful periods throughout your day) for 30 days to reduce stress and anxiety. You'll find that your body will naturally start to crave the deep breathing exercise at the moments you need it most.
  • Sit in the morning sunlight for at least 30 minutes every day. This is a great time to practice your Breathing Exercises mentioned above.
  • Plan your days and tasking by top productivity/priority first. Make a calendar by date/time to stay focused and on course.
  • Create obstacle situations that force you to get out of bed (such as setting an alarm without snooze and placing it far out of reach). 
  • Walk outside during the day for a minimum of 30 minutes a day. 

These methods have been shown to work for many people living with adrenal fatigue; however, it is important to choose a treatment method that not only makes you happy and healthy but one that is also safe for your overall body and mental health.  

Staying Aware  

Knowing the signs of adrenal fatigue and how to decrease your levels of stress is only the beginning of the process.

This condition may not be medically proven yet, but there is an obvious correlation that keeps it being researched and trialed today, and that truly speaks volumes.

Self-diagnosis with over-the-counter cortisol supplements can be dangerous and more harmful in the long run. A more holistic or alternative route has shown to have better results because these practitioners view patients through a more holistic lens.

So regardless of what we call it, there are millions of people suffering from similar symptoms, and by taking a deeper dive into looking at, and removing STRESSORS out of your life, and implementing a few of the methods for relieving stress above, the answers to feeling better may be right in front of you. 🌞

Janine Rotter, Director of Fitness Nutrition



Body Logic M.D. – Adrenal Fatigue in Women 

Web M.D. – Adrenal Fatigue 

Mayo Clinic – Adrenal Fatigue: What causes it? 

Hormones.com – Adrenal Fatigue: Myth vs. Fact 

Adrenal Fatigue Solutions in Women’s Health