The Connection Between Adrenal Fatigue, Stress & Water
The Connection Between Adrenal Fatigue, Stress & Water
The requirement for drinking an adequate amount of water is up-regulated when we exercise. This is well known, but did you know that stress and adrenal fatigue can alter the amount of water that you need to drink?
Not only that, there are other connections to how the body works during highly stressful experiences, which means you need to make a change to keep the body healthy if life is becoming stressful.
There’s no question, meeting the demands of modern life takes a toll on the human body. Modern people are often stressed and sleep-deprived, which can lead to burnout. Some Naturopaths and Functional Medicine Doctors call this phenomenon "Adrenal Fatigue".
Adrenal Fatigue develops over time, and as such the symptoms can change as the disease progresses. As the adrenals become overburdened, the amount of hormones and the time of day that they are produced changes. This can affect mood and sleep, significantly altering quality of life.
Before we get into 5 connections between water and fatigue, and 11 steps to balance the adrenal hormones, let's address an important question.
Is Adrenal Fatigue Real?
The term “Adrenal Fatigue” came about in the 1990s to explain a set of symptoms. Despite the popularity of the term, it’s not currently a recognised medical condition.
However, there are other medical terms that are used to explain the disease.
Your body is continually working to maintain balance. “Allostasis” is the term used to explain how the body maintains balance (or homeostasis) in stressful situations.
If a person is exposed to too much stress, this is known as “Allostatic Overload”.
The term “Adrenal Fatigue” or hypoadrenia was coined by naturopath James L Wilson, DC, ND, Ph.D to “identify below optimal adrenal function resulting from stress and distinguish it from Addison’s disease.”The accepted medical terms for this disease is “Adrenal Insufficiency.”
However, the term Adrenal Fatigue is more widely known by the general public thanks to the internet.
Adrenal Fatigue or Adrenal Insufficiency comes about when the body is under continual chronic stress or an acutely stressful situation.
When the body is in a perpetual sympathetic state, the adrenals secrete additional stress hormones like cortisol, which over time wreak havoc on the body.
5 Connections Between Water and Fatigue
When a person is suffering from adrenal fatigue, they may need to urinate more frequently. This is due to low levels of the hormone aldosterone.
Aldosterone is a steroid hormone that regulates fluids and minerals in the body.
Frequent urination can also lead to excreting essential minerals through the urine. As such, Adrenal Insufficiency can make people urinate more frequently, resulting in depleted nutrient reserves.
Craving Salty Foods
Both vitamin and mineral stores are excessively used up when a person is suffering from adrenal fatigue. This is because the metabolism speeds up when in the sympathetic state, creating more metabolic waste and quickly using up stores of nutrients to keep the body in balance.
The requirement for water is increased with the depletion of minerals: sodium, potassium and magnesium. Sodium, potassium and magnesium are essential electrolyte minerals that allow the body to absorb water.
A person who is suffering from adrenal fatigue will often crave salty foods due to being deficient in electrolytes.
Electrolytes are essential for the body to absorb water deep into the cells. Therefore, adrenal fatigue can produce a craving for salt, which is actually a symptom of dehydration due to an inability to retain water.
Dehydration Causes Fatigue
Dehydration, in and of itself, can cause fatigue. Adrenal fatigue can be a vicious cycle as it uses up electrolytes and also causes frequent urination. Both of these things lead to dehydration and fatigue.
To ensure sufficient hydration if you are under severe stress or suffering from adrenal fatigue, both high-quality water and also adequate consumption of electrolytes will help to bring your body back into balance.
That said, ensuring that you drink enough water isn’t enough. It is important to remove factors in your life that are causing too much stress if possible.
By reducing the amount of stress in your life, the body gets a chance to relax and enter the parasympathetic state. This gives the body a chance to heal and get back into balance.
Fatigue and Nutrient Depletion
In stressful situations or chronic stress-induced health conditions like adrenal fatigue, nutrients are used up rapidly. Creating an additional requirement to boost nutrient reserves. Eating a whole food plant-based diet that is rich in leafy greens, and getting tested for any nutrient deficiencies, can help combat fatigue.
Drinking enough water to ensure that nutrients can be transported and absorbed by the body is key. Additionally, there are several fat soluble vitamins that are essential to combat adrenal fatigue.
Eating a diet that is rich in healthy fats is also a good way to ensure that the body can boost energy reserves.
Circadian Rhythm & Fatigue
Our circadian rhythm is controlled by the pineal gland. Melatonin is produced through the activation of the pineal gland when light travels through your eyes.
For this reason, light is essential to balance out the sleep-wake cycle.
Furthermore, levels of cortisol should be high in the morning and lower in the evening in healthy people.
This can reduce the production of melatonin and disrupt our circadian rhythm. For this reason, a water purifier that reduces fluoride can help balance the hormones.
11 Steps to Balance The Adrenal Hormones
To soothe the adrenals and encourage them to create a balanced amount of hormones there are several steps a person can take, as follows:
- Reduce stress
- Eat a healthy balanced diet
- Drink 8 glasses of filtered water a day
- Consume electrolytes
- Boost nutrient reserves
- Get regular exercise
- Take up Yoga
- Practice meditation
- Diaphragmatic breathing
- Walking in nature
According to leading functional-medicine expert Dr. Will Cole, you can support adrenal health by eating more green superfoods (we recommend Green Vibrance Powder), consuming healthy fats, sipping herbal tea and increasing your magnesium and vitamin D.
Adrenal fatigue or Adrenal Insufficiency is caused when a person is exposed to too much stress. This can create a vicious cycle, whereby the body becomes nutrient deficient and dehydrated.
To combat adrenal fatigue, it is important to drink enough water and consume electrolytes while taking steps to eliminate stress from your life.
Written by best-selling author and integrative nutrition health coach Rowanna Watson, who has a passion for natural health. Rowanna is an expert in all areas of holistic health, plant-based nutrition, detoxification and personal development.
Water for Health Ltd began trading in 2007 with the goal of positively affecting the lives of many. We still retain that mission because we believe that proper hydration and nutrition can make a massive difference to people’s health and quality of life. Click here to find out more.