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Science 

Do Adrenal Fatigue Supplements Work?

May 24, 2020 3 min read

Responding to the challenges of daily life can be exhausting. Stressful situations may result in symptoms of fatigue, weakness, low blood pressure, loss of appetite, weight loss, trouble sleeping and lack of motivation. An excessive amount of stress can lead to the condition known as adrenal fatigue.

Why is adrenal fatigue so detrimental to your health? Because the adrenal glands play a vital role in your endocrine system, which is responsible for hormones that regulate our emotions.

Adrenal Glands

Sitting atop the kidneys, the adrenal glands receive a rich supply of blood and secrete hormones directly into the bloodstream. When blood pressure falls below normal limits, the adrenal glands respond so that more water and salt are absorbed back into blood circulation, increasing blood pressure. The adrenal glands also produce the hormones responsible for the fight-or-flight response: Epinephrine (adrenaline) and norepinephrine (noradrenaline) as well as cortisol, estrogen and testosterone. Together, these hormones are referred to as the adrenal cascade.

When the adrenal glands fail to produce enough hormones to keep up with the demands of stress, it can lead to the condition of adrenal insufficiency. Adrenal fatigue is simply over-stressing the autonomic nervous system; it is a chronic condition that arises from persistent adrenal insufficiency.

Treating Adrenal Fatigue

Adrenal fatigue treatment is successful when you mitigate stress and when your body is able to more efficiently produce fight-or-flight hormones. Identifying any underlying causes is the first step in treating adrenal fatigue. Since other medical conditions show similar symptoms, it is best to see a doctor first. Counseling and lifestyle changes centered on nutrition, exercise and reducing stress may be the most effective treatment, but there is a role for medications and supplements.

Adrenal Fatigue Supplements

The most often recommended supplements for treating adrenal fatigue are B-complex vitamins, especially B-5 (pantothenic acid), B-6 (pyridoxine), B-12, vitamin C and magnesium. Recommended natural therapies include licorice root, maca root, golden root, Siberian ginseng and ashwagandha. But do adrenal fatigue supplements really work?

To recover from stress, your body needs good, quality food. Stress forces the metabolism to speed up, which makes it possible to burn through many times the amount of nutrients normally needed. When insufficient nutrition fails to provide all the essential nutrients the body needs, a person will begin to suffer from adrenal fatigue symptoms. But there are certain supplements that can really help.

B-Complex Vitamins

  • All eight B vitamins are used throughout the adrenal cascade(1).
  • The body needs B-5, B-6 and B-12 in a higher proportion than other B vitamins.
  • Make sure the supplement you choose is bioidentical, meaning it has the exact same structure as those that occur naturally in food.

Vitamin C

  • Adrenal glands require a lot of vitamin C to function properly.
  • Ascorbic acid from vitamin C is a cofactor required for adrenal gland hormone production, especially cortisol.
  • High stress or chronic stress depletes vitamin C.
  • A vitamin C supplement with a 2:1 ratio of ascorbic acid to bioflavonoids, similar to what’s found in nature, ensures that ascorbic acid is fully metabolized and available in the adrenal glands(2).

Magnesium

  • More than 325 enzymatic reactions in the body require magnesium.
  • Magnesium helps the central nervous system by aiding the creation of neurotransmitters.
  • When neurotransmitters become too excited, magnesium calms them, relieving the adrenal glands.
  • Magnesium also plays a role in regulating cortisol.
  • Taking a quality magnesium supplement with B-6 helps magnesium accumulate in cells.

Ashwagandha (root of a berry plant native to India)

  • Used for thousands of years and is the most popular of all the natural remedies for adrenal fatigue.
  • Regulates the production of cortisol much like magnesium.
  • Can help reduce anxiety by as much as 44%(3).
  • Also used to reduce depression, social dysfunction and insomnia, all of which can relieve some of the underlying causes of adrenal fatigue while increasing energy levels and production(4).

If you are experiencing brain fog, weakness, fatigue, insomnia or any of the other symptoms, try these effective adrenal fatigue supplements:Physician’s Choice Organic Ashwagandha andKSM-66 Ashwagandha.

In Summary

Supplements can be very helpful in treating adrenal fatigue. Supplying the body with nutrients such as the B complex vitamins, vitamin C and magnesium will ensure that the adrenal glands have what they need to handle excess stress. Additionally, ashwagandha supplements can help you stay calm by regulating the production of cortisol. When the body has what it needs, stress will not result in adrenal fatigue.

Siphiwe Baleka - Contributing Writer, Physician's Choice