Some of the symptoms of adrenal fatigue are:
- Gain in weight
- Brain fog
- Digestive conditions like constipation, diarrhea, etc.
- Salt or sugar cravings or both
- The 3 pm crash
- Vulnerability to different illnesses
- Inability to take stress
- Not getting enough sleep
- Hot flashes which are generally associated with menopause
- Problems with concentration
- Stage of Burnout
The condition has been divided into three stages by Wellness Mama.
STAGE 1 – TIRED AND WIRED
Cortisol levels generally stay high during the morning, but when you have elevated levels at night, then it is a problem. Cortisol levels should stay low at night. You will have difficulty sleeping and you will always feel like you are on the edge.
STAGE 2 – TIRED AND STRESSED
When there is a serious cortisol disruption, you will have a high cortisol level during the morning but this will suddenly fall after lunch. It will result in exhaustion and afternoon fog. They may also wake up while sleeping and fail to fall asleep throughout the night.
STAGE 3 – COMPLETE BURNOUT
During complete burnout, you will feel like a pregnant woman or the time when a new-born baby is present in the house. You do not know how much sleep is required since you are always tired. Your cortisol patterns are fully disrupted and you are at risk of autoimmune diseases, gut issues, and thyroid diseases.
Generally, when you are going through emotional stress emerging from breakup, death, unemployment or even positive stress like getting married or getting pregnant, it leads to adrenal fatigue. Processed food can also result in chronic inflammation, sleep deficiency, and gut issues which can result in stress.
When you are under stress, then cortisol is released. But staying under constant stress will elevate cortisol to such a major degree that it will be too much to take in. For women, this results in painful PMS, irregular periods, gaining weight and thinning of hair. Even when you are forcing ‘healthy’ habits like eating less or skipping meals, or when you are working hard and thus depriving yourself of sleep, you will experience burnouts.