Thanksgiving, Hanuka, Christmas, New Years, and so many other holidays are all packed into less than two months. This causes stress for a lot of people. From cooking big dinners for family to cleaning the dishes afterward, buying gifts to planning trips, and so much more: there are many things that cause stress during the holidays. Most of us just push through each holiday in order to get to the next, but this could be the worst thing for the body and adrenal glands.
But, this might all be a little confusing. So let’s slow down and take a deep breath.
So, let’s start by discussing the impact of stress on your body. Don’t worry, we’ll move slowly. There’s no need to create another source of stress.
Stress impacts the body in many different ways, including:
• Weakened immune system
• Increased and rapid breathing
• Increased blood pressure and elevated heartbeat which can raise the risk of heart attack
• Stomach aches
• Fertility problems (in women)
• Muscular tension
• Decreased sex drive
• Erectile dysfunction (in men)
• Adrenal fatigue
In this article, we will be focusing on adrenal fatigue.
To begin, let’s define the two parts of adrenal fatigue that need to be defined:
The Adrenal System – The typical human body has two adrenal glands. Each gland is located on top of one of the kidneys within the body. When the adrenal glands are functioning properly, they help the body to survive. In addition to adrenaline, they pump a number of other hormones into the bloodstream including cortisol and epinephrine.
Whenever we are in a threatening situation, the adrenal glands activate and begin pumping extra levels of these hormones into the body. Often considered the “fight or flight organ,” the adrenal glands are responsible for helping the body to either face and fight the threat or flee from it as a method of self-defense. But when the adrenal glands are overexerted, fatigue can develop.
Fatigue – When a human experiences fatigue, it means that they are really, really tired. It becomes difficult to concentrate or act as normal. During fatigue, most people just want to take a nap or relax. Using the mind or body becomes difficult.
Just like the mind or body, specific organs and glands can also face fatigue. When the adrenal glands become fatigued, it means they have been overactive for far too long. They stop producing the amounts of adrenaline, cortisol, and epinephrine at the levels needed for normal functioning.
Adrenal fatigue can produce a number of long-term health risks and exacerbate the symptoms of stress. Decreases in blood sugar often lead to increased sugar cravings which results in binge eating and weight gain. This can be worsened by decreased cholesterol and blood sugar which are also caused by adrenal fatigue.
There more serious threats of adrenal fatigue in men include:
• Decreased levels of testosterone
• Decreased muscle mass
• Increased risk of erectile dysfunction
• Inability to perform sexually
• And much worse
So how do you recover from adrenal fatigue after the holidays?
The first thing to do is visit your doctor and get a proper diagnosis. The doctor might prescribe adrenal extracts or put you on a special diet. There are also other treatments that he might suggest which don’t require medication.
Another important thing to do is ensure that you get proper rest. If your adrenal glands are fatigued, they need rest to recover. Continuing to exert yourself will only increase stress and lead to great fatigue, which could prove damaging to your overall health. Meditation, time in nature, prayer, reading, or engaging in other peaceful activities may be helpful.
The most important thing you can for yourself is to keep away from stressful situations!