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Adrenal fatigue and HPA axis dysregulation (HPA-D)


The term “adrenal fatigue” applies to a family of symptoms, including fatigue, nervousness, brain fog, sleep issues, and digestive problems. In essence, what we call “adrenal fatigue” is your body constantly experiencing a fight-or-flight response, which in turn leads to immune system burnout. People with symptoms of “adrenal fatigue” are often tired during the day, wired at night, and experiencing chronic stress all the dang time. On top of that, they can have body aches, lightheadedness, hair loss, and GI issues. Why do we keep putting “adrenal fatigue” in quotes? Here’s why: your adrenal glands, which sit on top of your kidneys, secrete hormones, including cortisol. The idea behind adrenal fatigue is that as your body experiences stress, more cortisol is released, leading to low cortisol in your adrenal glands (they are tired!). However, many people with adrenal fatigue symptoms actually have normal or high cortisol levels. While the term “adrenal fatigue” is recognized by modern practitioners, it has yet to be accepted as a conventional diagnosis. Why? Because this term is really a summary of stress response symptoms that are often caused by a hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal (HPA) axis dysregulation or dysfunction, which plays a role in your response to stress. Basically, HPA-D is our stress response system. Calling it “adrenal fatigue” is actually incorrect terminology, though it has gained popularity. (Do note that it could also be adrenal insufficiency or, in extreme cases of low cortisol, Addison’s disease. Best to get it checked out!) If you’re experiencing adrenal fatigue symptoms, advocate for yourself. Don’t doubt your symptoms! Consulting with practitioners of functional and alternative medicine is a great first step to breaking the cycle of HPA axis dysfunction. Whether you call it “adrenal fatigue” or something else, getting well is what matters most.

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The Adrenal Thyroid Revolution: A Proven 4-Week Program to Rescue Your Metabolism, Hormones, Mind & Mood

A Yale-trained, board-certified family physician with a specialty in women's health and obstetrics delivers a proven 28-day program to heal the overwhelmed, overloaded systems, and prevent and reverse the myriad of symptoms affecting the vast majority of women today. Weight gain, fatigue, brain fog, hormonal imbalances, and autoimmune conditions—for years, health practitioners have commonly viewed each as individual health problems resulting from a patient’s genetic bad luck, poor lifestyle choices, or lack of willpower. Patients, too, have turned to different doctors to alleviate their specific symptoms: an endocrinologist for a thyroid problem; a gynecologist for hormonal issues; an internist for weight, diabetes, and high blood pressure; a rheumatologist for joint problems, and even to therapists or psychologists. While these ailments may seem unrelated, Dr. Aviva Romm contends that they are intrinsically connected by what she calls Survival Overdrive Syndrome, a condition that occurs when the body becomes overloaded. SOS can result from childhood survival patterns or adult life stressors that are compounded by foods we eat, toxins in our environment, viral infections, lack of sleep, disrupted gut microflora, and even prescribed medications. Two of the systems most affected are the adrenal system and the thyroid, which control mood, hormones, inflammation, immunity, energy, weight, will power, blood sugar balance, cholesterol, sleep, and a host of other bodily functions. When these systems become overwhelmed they lead to symptoms that can develop into full blow illnesses, including diabetes, hypertension, osteoporosis, and heart disease—all of which have medically provable origins in SOS. The Adrenal Thyroid Revolution explains SOS, how it impacts our bodies and can lead to illness, and most importantly, offers a drug-free cure developed through Dr. Romm’s research and clinical work with tens of thousands of patients. In as little as two weeks, you can lose excess weight, discover increased energy, improve sleep, and feel better. With The Adrenal Thyroid Revolution, you can rescue your metabolism, hormones, mind and mood—and achieve long-lasting health.

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