The typical Adrenal Body type begins with fat accumulation around the mid-section of your body first. Why? Your body is protecting the vital organs in the belly as a survival mechanism.
Next, you will develop fat pads in your upper back as your body is trying to compensate for your belly pulling you forward. Then muscles in your legs start to breakdown for fuel. As a result your legs get thinner as the body searches for protein from the quadricep muscles. When the Adrenals are desperate, they start breaking down muscle for protein.
Lastly, the face becomes fatter and round while red cheeks and rosacea become present due to the weakened blood vessels. As the face and eyes become puffy and swollen, you develop a double chin and wrinkles. This is not because of aging. It is your adrenals in overdrive. Your adrenals don’t care what you look like, they are only concerned about survival.
Let’s look at the complete breakdown of the Adrenal Body Type:
Sagging, loose Mid-section Weight with Thin Arms and Legs
With this body type you tend to have a hard time fitting into clothes and wear elastic around your waist, which makes matters worse as the tight band restricts and irritates the adrenal glands even more.
A fat pad can develop in the lower neck and upper back area called a “buffalo hump.” This helps balance the weight from the growing belly.
Reddish purple strips or bands can appear on the stomach, thighs, buttocks, arms and breasts as you lose collagen, the protein glue that holds the body together.
Puffy Face and Eyes with Double Chin and Wrinkles
The adrenal hormones are being pumped too much.
Without achieving the “Rest and Digest” state, your body will feel bloated from indigestible food sitting in the stomach.
Inflamed with Chronic Pain and Fibromyalgia
Then only anti-inflammatory hormone the body produces is cortisol. This is why it is used as the main treatment for every type of inflammation from allergies to arthritis to asthma and so many more conditions. If the adrenals were working properly, steroids wouldn’t be needed and the adrenals would successfully address the inflammation. Exhausted Adrenals keep the body in a state of pain, inflammation and stiffness as cortisol becomes dysfunctional. As the “off-switch” for the Adrenals fails to work, you experience a state of chronic pain and sore muscles. As the situation worsens, fibromyalgia develops.
Fibromyalgia is a systemic condition of muscle pain and inflammation throughout the body; this is essentially the adrenals running out of its own anti-inflammatory hormone. Stress hormone triggered by pain can block fat-burning hormones, making it impossible to change the characteristics of the Adrenal Body Type.
Dark Eye Circles and Tired Appearance
Usually if you have burned out adrenals you develop dark circles under your eyes which is related to inflamed kidneys (from sitting below the adrenal glands). You feel tired, drained and have brain fog. Brain fog effects concentration and short term memory.
Hard Time breathing and Heavy Legs
Your oxygen levels become low so it is hard to breathe and your lower legs feel heavy.
Hair Loss and Facial Hair
In Women, excess Adrenal hormones can lead to having a deeper voice, facial hair and male-pattern baldness.
Acne occurs because of the oil glands becoming enlarged, especially during the menstrual cycle.
Atrophy or shrinkage of the Breasts
This is due to excessive male hormone production of androgens by the adrenals.
Tartar of Teeth, Cataracts, Eye Twitching, Bone Spurs
These are all Calcium Issues. In order to absorb calcium your blood needs to be at a certain level of pH, which is related to your acid/alkaline levels. Overactive adrenals make the blood too alkaline, preventing calcium from being directed to the bone and muscles; this can cause osteoporosis and muscle cramps in your calves. Instead of calcium going into the body, it accumulates on the body tissues. It will present itself as excessive tartar on your teeth, early cataracts, heal spurs on the bones, on the joints as arthritis, on the tendons as tendonitis, in the arteries as arteriosclerosis, deposits in the kidneys, on the toes as bunions and eyelid twitching. Without balancing the calcium in the body, you will have a difficult time getting to sleep.
Because the mucus membrane swells due to the compromised immune system and lack of anti-inflammatory response for all inner body membranes.
The Adrenal Body Type Is Not a Weight Problem, It’s a HORMONE Problem!
In order to switch into “fat-burning mode”, no sugar can be present in the blood. That doesn’t mean just from your diet. Regardless of what you eat, the adrenals are constantly releasing sugar, either through the break down of its own tissue or releasing stored sugar from the liver. And to make matters worse, if you eat sugar or carbs, your body will never achieve fat burning.
As you have sugar in the blood, whether it is from the adrenals or from food, the body is consistently pumping out the hormone Insulin in to the body to quickly store the sugar as fat—the body needs to keep the amount of sugar in the blood to less than one teaspoon! And the best way to do that is to quickly store it in fat cells. So, as sugar prompts the FAT-STORING hormone insulin to be released, it will override all other fat-burning hormones and shuts them off. The body will always burn sugar before fat.
What causes this to happen? Your adrenals are overworked from stressors, such as:
1. Emotional stress: Your relationships are pulling on you in every direction.
2. Mental stress: Work is straining you or the demands on you at home are overbearing.
3. Physical stress: Over Exercising and pushing your body past a healthy amount of physical work where there is no time for recovery.
4. Injury or infection: This makes your body work harder than normal to keep up with the normal demands on top of the added injury or infection it is fighting.
5. Allergies: Your immune system is working in overdrive to chronically fight allergies.
6. Lack of Sleep: This is the MOST important aspect of staying healthy and not overworking the Adrenals. Your body does its restore and repair during sleep. What’s worse, is as you need sleep even more, you find yourself unable to sleep when you have the chance.
7. Chemicals in the environment: From pesticides, to toxins in the air, to chemicals you put on your body in lotions and other products, they disrupt all of your hormones, not just cortisol.
8. Pharmaceutical and Recreational drugs: They deplete the adrenals as they give you temporary “super strength” and over burden the rest of your organs. This includes Prednisone.
When you are stressed long term or putting too many demands on your body, the adrenals have a hard time shutting off that stress response which eventually exhausts the Adrenals. You get this feeling of spinning and not being able to settle down or getting relief.
What Are the Adrenal Glands?
Located at the top of each Kidney, the adrenal glands produce the hormone cortisol (also called hydrocortisone), which helps the body maintain homeostasis under stress, and counteracts allergic and inflammatory reactions. In low concentrations, cortisol supports the immune system. It helps the body make antibodies; for example, the body makes more cortisol in the early stages of an infection.
The adrenal glands help with immune system protection, balance fluid and salt levels, control minerals such as potassium, rapid heart rate and sleep cycles. In a healthy person, cortisol typically is higher in the morning to “get you out of bed and attack the day” and lower in the evening when it is time to wind down. (Side note: that is also the reason you are more insulin resistant and react more negatively to sugar and carbs in the morning versus later in the day. Thus, the reason for intermittent fasting.)
The adrenals even act as a backup organ for the ovaries during menopause and make the same hormones as the ovaries do. In high doses, however, cortisol suppresses the immune system. Over time, excessive cortisol can promote aging, loss of bone density, and heart disease.
The hormones secreted by the adrenal glands are called corticosteroids. Synthetic derivatives of corticosteroids like prednisone are useful for treating immune conditions, but long-term use of these drugs decreases the adrenal cortex’s ability to produce cortisol, leading to Adrenal Insufficiency. When you bypass the body and give it straight hormones, the adrenals don’t have to produce their own. As a side effect, this severely weakens the adrenals.
What Are the Symptoms of Adrenal Burnout?
- Fatigue, especially under stress
- Low blood sugar
- Sugar cravings
- Distracted and poor concentration. You can’t focus on one thing.
- No tolerance for things out of order or people that are annoying.
- Fixated on problems. You notice the 1% that is out of order, and not the 99% that is in order.
- Brain Fog
- Poor Coping Ability
- Allergies, Asthma
- Reduced Libido and Irregular Menstrual Cycles
- Hot Flashes
- Facial Hair for women
- Loose Collagen
- Lose your breath going upstairs
- Bloating. It shuts down digestion and your stomach swells when you eat. As you are in Fight or Flight, Digestion turns off.
- Heartburn, GERD, Acid Reflux. Your system is excessively acidic regardless of your diet.
- Tired after you eat
- Water Retention. As the adrenals sit on top of the kidneys, your kidneys become inflamed and thus retain water. And certain autoimmune conditions. Auto-Immunity is usually connected to Leaky Gut.
Does This Sound Like Diabetes?
A lot of these issues mimic issues of Diabetes. Why? Remember, when cortisol is released, insulin is released! And when insulin is released, you store fat, and eventually your body becomes resistant to the release of insulin. As it becomes resistant, it releases even more insulin; it becomes a vicious cycle. Insulin Resistance IS the cause of Diabetes. Furthermore, chronic long term release of cortisol causes not only diabetes, but osteoarthritis, dementia, autoimmune disease like Rheumatoid, high blood pressure, and osteoporosis.
Adrenals Don’t Have an OFF Switch!
What does that mean? You can rev up your adrenals with your “Sympathetic Nervous System” or Fight or Flight response, but you can’t turn it off and get into your “Parasympathetic” mode which is your “Rest and Digest” state. All stress accumulates over your lifetime. As that stress accumulates, your body will start gaining weight and looking more and more like the Adrenal Body Type.
What Can You Do To Fix Your Adrenal Body Type?
It is more important to avoid fat-making dominating hormones like cortisol from too much stress than it is to stimulate the fat-burning hormones.
In order to shut down the overproduction of cortisol you need to focus on the following:
Sleep: Without sleep your Adrenals cannot be reset. This is imperative! Most fat burning is done during the deep sleep cycles. So if you aren’t getting into deep high quality sleep, you won’t burn fat even with exercise. You are meant to go through four 90 minutes sleep cycles from superficial to deep. If you have burned out adrenals, your body can’t fully relax and achieve that deep sleep. Then, the next day you are exhausted even more and the adrenals are in an even worse state of exhaustion.
Exercise: Low intense walking with lots of oxygen and low stress. Excess hard exercise will further stress the adrenals and will halt weight loss.
Eliminate “People Stress”: Weed out the people in your life that cause stress as much as possible.
Get Space: Go on vacation if possible. Don’t watch TV. that isn’t getting you space and is actually draining you more.
Stop thinking: Find places and time where you can stop your brain from being in overdrive. Meditation is one way to do that.
Eliminate Sugar: Avoid the obvious sugars, but also the fruit, grains, yogurt and alcohol. They will all contribute to weight gain and the Adrenal Body Type.
Find Adrenal Cocktails and Keto diet dessert recipes: You will have sugar cravings, so arm yourself with Keto friendly desserts. My favorite place to go is Pinterest where you can find an endless supply of recipes!
Increase Potassium: It calms adrenals down and is a physiological tranquilizer. It will help you sleep.
Increase Protein: Make sure you are getting enough to build your muscles back up and help stabilize blood sugar.
Intermittent Fast: As you limit yourself to 2-3 meals a day, you are not triggering your insulin to release more than 2-3 times a day, which is directly related to your release of cortisol. This also takes the stress off your digestion system and helps you burn fat.
Take Apple Cider Vinegar: Add it to your drinks during the day and it helps burn visceral fat. It also helps with blood sugar and cortisol.
Supplements That Can Help Correct Your Adrenal Body Type:
Silver: Boosts the Immune system which in turn helps with lowering the effects of chronic stress
- Addresses burn-out, especially when accompanied by aching, pain, and digestive disturbances
- Restores energy, sense of well-being, and mental acuity
- Helps alleviate non-specific dry coughing, dyspepsia, and leukorrhea
- Supports the adrenal, pituitary, and thyroid glands
- Athletes may use it with yin tonics in order to replenish their systems
- A great Adrenal Night Formula
- Supports body and mind in combating daily life stress
- Reduces anxiety and stress levels
- Increases vitality, stamina and energy
- Improves both physical and mental performance
- Helps to support relaxation of mind
- Helps to promote restful sleep
- Promotes a healthy sleeping pattern and are non-habit forming with no hangover or side effects
- Specially formulated to soothe and calm the nerves and balance mental activity
- May also be useful for anxiety
Keto: The Keto Diet is the basis of the Adrenal Reset Diet.
Oxylent: The Adrenal Body Type is typically low in minerals, electrolytes and amino acids.
Astra Essence: Supports the kidneys and brings back vitality