The Dr. Lam Show

3 Facts, 3 Mistakes, and 3 Keys to Adrenal Fatigue

September 12, 2021 Dr. Lam
The Dr. Lam Show
3 Facts, 3 Mistakes, and 3 Keys to Adrenal Fatigue
Show Notes Transcript

Using our experience in seeing thousands of adrenal fatigue cases, we have come up with the most important things you need to know on mistakes to avoid and how to recover from adrenal fatigue.
 
1:30 - Adrenal Fatigue is Real
3:50 - There are many symptoms of Adrenal Fatigue
6:20 - Each body is unique and has intrinsic response to stress
9:25 - Wrong Interpretation of Lab Testing
11:50 - Improper Use of Medication and Supplements
15:50 - Failure to recognize Paradoxical Reactions
18:50 - Learn from Someone who's experienced in Adrenal Fatigue
21:00 - Listen and Understand the Whispers of your Symptoms
22:55 - Take a holistic approach to recovery

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Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

Adrenal fatigue is one of our favorite topics because we've helped with 1000s of cases. Together with the knowledge from our father who has gone through adrenal fatigue himself, along with many sufferers, whom we have helped along the way. We are going to educate you on the three facts, three mistakes and three keys to recovery from adrenal fatigue. This is the Dr. Lam show, and we're here to talk to you about integrative medicine, and empower you to take control of your health. If you enjoy the show and find it useful, please hit the like button and subscribe to the Dr. Lam show podcast and YouTube channel. This is the way to make our show more visible and so that other people who need this information can find it. I'm Dr. Carrie Lam. I'm a family medicine physician. I've completed fellowships in functional and metabolic medicine, and I'm passionate about nutrition and lifestyle medicine.

Dr. Jeremy Lam, MD:

I am Dr. Jeremy Lam. I'm an internal medicine physician and I'm also board certified in anti aging and regenerative medicine as well. Today we're talking about adrenal fatigue. Let's start with some adrenal fatigue facts so that we're all on the same page. Dr. Carrie, what is our adrenal Fact number one?

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

So Adrenal Fatigue is real, and that's the fact number one. Despite your doctors may not believe in you, or that you have so many different symptoms that they don't understand. Or they might diagnose you with other types of syndromes, whether it's chronic fatigue or hypothyroid. You may have normal lab values, despite how you're feeling. And even though it feels like the end of the world, all the labs all come back normal. Don't fret because we know that adrenal fatigue and the neural endo metabolic stress response is real. And crashes are a way that we can sometimes describe this recurrent fatigue that adrenal fatigue sufferers experience. Also, there are a lot of different other symptoms that your body can present with when it's overcoming stress and it's overwhelmed, and when the body has reached his maximum ability to deal with stress. What your body does, to try to deal with Adrenal Fatigue is to slow down. Dr. Jeremy, what is slowing down mean for your body?

Dr. Jeremy Lam, MD:

Well, that means that your body is going to downregulate its metabolism and the hormone levels. So basically, your body is forced into a sleep mode in order to conserve energy. And so the fatiguing command appears suddenly, and the symptoms come on so suddenly, as if you can just drop off the cliff. And they can come on for no apparent reasons. So it's really important that you're listening to the whispers of what the body is telling us. Then you can be well educated on how to manage these crashes. And know sometimes these crashes can range from very mild ones, just like oh, I'm having a sugar craving, I have to rest for three hours or I have to go home and lay on the couch. So the these symptoms can be varying in multitude as well as in severity. That's our adrenal factor number one. The adrenal fatigue, especially the crashes that you're experiencing, is real. And we've seen it happen to many people, and we've also seen them come back from it. So that's why we know it's real.

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

And we've seen our dad, like he said, You know, we've seen many people with cases of adrenal fatigue, and that's why we know that it's real. Then let's moves on to our adrenal Fact number two, which is that there are many different symptoms in adrenal fatigue. We talked about these whispers of your body, that every person might present differently. For someone, it could be milder, like sugar cravings, or just needing a little coffee in the morning and for others, they might be a little more tired throughout the day, needing to really be bedridden. No matter what they do, their fatigue doesn't get better, they may have hormone imbalance. There is a logical explanation for each symptom that comes up, you just have to find the root cause and the circuit that it is dealing with. This is the, what we call the neuro endo metabolic stress response. It is that stress affects every part of your body and different organs in different systems might throw out different symptoms. And so symptoms are the way that your body is alerting you to the disarray within your body. Give us some examples of some symptoms. Dr. Jeremy.

Dr. Jeremy Lam, MD:

For example, we see a lot of people with salt cravings and low trending blood pressures, which can be attributed to the hormone called aldosterone dysregulation. Aldosterone is a hormone that comes out from adrenals. It is needed for salt balancing in your body. So when it becomes dysregulated, then you can have these salt cravings as well as the low trending blood pressures. Another example is heart palpitations due to sympathetic nervous system overtone. PMS, for example that many women go through can also be from excessive estrogen or estrogen dominant symptoms. So there are so many symptoms. In fact, there are over 75 signs and symptoms of adrenal fatigue. And they reflect the body's desire to alert you to bring to your attention that something underlying is going on. And it's screaming out for your attention so that you can try to address the underlying problem. If you don't address the underlying root problem, then your body is going to become more unstable.

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

So it's always important to listen to your symptoms, and don't just brush it off. We now go to adrenal Fact number three, which is each person is biologically and constitutionally unique. You all have your own set of DNA which is unique. Each body and each person is so unique, that God made you. And this body type that you have dictates to what degree that stress can affect you and what you are able to handle. You all know that there are some people who thrive on stress, they love it. And for others, that stress is a killer, it just produces more and more emotional anxiety, and they might not feel great. So everyone reacts differently to stress. But know that your body has an intrinsic mechanism that you're born with, to deal with stress, the neuro endo metabolic stress response, which we talked about. It's important to know this because the stress response can become overwhelmed, and become problematic. So if you're feeling tired for no reason - Is it because of your mind, your hormone? Your gut or is it the stress response overwhelmed? You have to really get down to the root cause because it can be different for each person.

Dr. Jeremy Lam, MD:

So that's our adrenal Fact number three, where again, each person's biological constitution is unique. To recap, number one, the first one is Adrenal Fatigue is very real. Number two, there are many different symptoms of adrenal fatigue, and number three, that each person's biological constitution is unique. So you need to have a very specialized approach to each person. As you can tell, adrenal fatigue isn't as simple as resting more or going on with your life. Every circuit and organ system in your body is connected. So it is a major change and one of these can have numerous and unexpected effects. If you're struggling with these kinds of changes, contact our team for a free initial phone call at 714709 1000. They can give you specialized information and help with the changes that can occur with adrenal fatigue. Now let's go more deeply into those changes. That happened with adrenal fatigue, and also the symptoms that are associated with it.

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

So we're gonna go into the three adrenal fatigue mistakes that are often made, as many start to go on their own recovery journey, they self navigate and make a lot of mistakes. These are what we see most commonly, they go online, they don't understand what fatigue is or what the reason is, and their healthcare professional or their doctor are not able to offer them the ight solutions. So they conti ue to get worse and wo se. The natural progression is ust to look for answers. W 've studied and collated the e mistakes from 1000s of cases hat we've built over the years of helping them either by phone r in person and we want to sha e them with you so that you don t make the same mistakes tha a lot of other adrenal fatigu sufferers have made. What's o r first adrenal

Dr. Jeremy Lam, MD:

Well, the first mistake is wrong interpretation of laboratory testing. There are so many ways to interpret lab testing, and a lot of people do it differently. For example, what's the difference between saliva testing and blood testing? There's a lot of variants even for normal ranges of lab results, as lab results can also differ depending on what stage of adrenal fatigue. For example, in early stages, the cortisol, DGA and pregnenolone levels tend to be higher as your adrenal glands are working hard and pumping out all these hormones to give you energy and fight off the stress that you're encountering. However, in later stages your adrenals start to burn out. So the pregnenolone levels tend to be lower. Your morning cortisol level blunts, and that's where you get this flat curve on the saliva tests. These are some very general rules as there are differences between people. Not only that computerized interpretations are often more wrong than right, because it's templated. You know, there's so many variations, especially in a saliva test, you can have the reverse curve, yo-yo curve, nighttime that is lower than he morning, which is what it is upposed to. But sometimes it's ot supposed to be where it is. o it's very important to nderstand what the cortisol urves are telling you. And to ook at the overall picture nstead of looking at those bsolute numbers, which can lead you astray. When your numbers are straight, then people often get glandulars herbs, hormones, but those supplements might not be the right approach in the long run, and can actually harm you if not given at the right time. So it's really important not just to rely on that testing, but also using your body's signs and symptoms to gauge how weak the adrenals are. Then looking at the lab testing to see how it correlates. So Dr. Kerry, what's the number two mistake that is often done in adrenal fatigue recovery.

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

Mistake number two in adrenal fatigue recovery is improper use of nutritional supplements and medications. I know you talked about some glandulars, adaptogens. Many natural compounds have different dose dependent behaviors and they can behave at one dose very differently from another dose. It is also very body specific, someone can have a much sensitive constitution compared to someone else. So for example, if you take an herb or glandular at a low dose, it could behave positively for somebody and at high dose may behave negatively. But this kind of backlash is very common when you don't understand how sensitive your body is, when to stop, what dose to intervene, when to titrate. So people who self navigate, tend to get the bottle, and see what the recommended dosing is, even though it might not be optimal for healing or the right dose for them. And depending on what stage of adrenal fatigue, they are in. For example, the RDA, or the recommended daily allowance that the government has given us for healthy normal people might not necessarily actually be the optimum dose. For example, RDA for vitamin C, is 80 milligrams, but that's hardly sufficient for a person who has adrenal fatigue. In adrenal fatigue, vitamin C is a key cofactor, the key building block to making all hormones, and you will probably need way more than 80 milligrams, sometimes even two grams, twice a day, or more depending on your constitution and your sensitivity. Also there are so many different types of delivery systems and you might be tolerant of one type of vitamin C and not others. There are about 20 different forms and delivery systems, you might not know which one to use, which bioavailability is better, and when to take them. So you can say I'm taking vitamin C, but you might actually crash yourself from the misuse or using it unintentionally for the wrong reason. And so we often see people who call us because they used the wrong supplements at the wrong time, at the wrong dosing.

Dr. Jeremy Lam, MD:

When they come and call us and ask us, you know, as they've tried a lot of supplementation, they think that everything's the same, but it's not. In addition, excessive use of prescription medications also sometimes make adrenal fatigue condition worse. We live in a world where symptoms are often classified as diseases, and we want to control the symptoms. It's considered a cure, but really all we're doing is controlling the symptoms instead of getting to the root cause of the problem. And you know, physicians have been trained to treat the symptoms, but we aren't really trained to get down to the root cause. So it's important that we respect the body's signs and symptoms, especially in adrenal fatigue. They are valuable, sensitive indicators to help guide us in the recovery process. Just as pain is a warning sign from our body that something is wrong, suppressing pain with a painkiller might not be the same as finding a cure from a condition. You need to find out what the root cause of the pain is. Suppressing your pain is really masking the situation and not helping. And so just like adrenal fatigue, this will not work long term, if you just mask the symptoms as the body is going to keep punishing you. The logical approach is to give the body the tools it needs to heal itself, while monitoring the symptoms. And using that to help gauge your body's healing capabilities.

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

Now we'll move on to mistake number three, which is failure to recognize paradoxical and unusual reactions. What is a paradoxical reaction? It can happen either with medical treatments or drugs, or even supplements where you just have an opposite effect to what you would normally expect. Some examples could be when you take magnesium, it's supposed to calm you down and supposed to give you relaxation and, and feelings of slowing your body down. However, when some people take magnesium, they can have the opposite effect where it stimulates them instead. Or sometimes it causes constipation, when even though it's supposed to help relax your bowels. It's very important to find these paradoxical reactions and see why you're having these and be on high alert. Another example can be like some sedatives prescribed for adults can actually cause hyper activeness in children. And so paradoxical reactions are often more prevalent in natural compounds. We don't really know the reason, but we do have a working theory that more compensated the body is like in cases of advanced adrenal fatigue, the more frequent paradoxical reactions can occur. So nutrients that are suitable for one person may not necessarily be good for another person, and actually be toxic to someone, if they have a lot of toxins or congestions. Dr. Jeremy, tell us why someone might be having paradoxical reactions.

Dr. Jeremy Lam, MD:

Oftentimes, people have paradoxical reactions, because when we take a look at the stress response, their detoxification circuit is dysfunctioning. And that's mainly if your liver as well as your cellular matrix is quite congested. So you have problems detoxing. For example, if your garbage disposal in your kitchen is not working, and you keep trying to put more things in there, it's going to overflow but not work. The liver and the extracellular matrix, and our detoxification circuit behave similarly. We keep trying to put nutrition and supplements into our body, which is good for us. But if you don't have our proper functioning detoxification pathways, then you're going to have possible paradoxical reactions. If you have made any of these adrenal fatigue mistakes that we've discussed so far, when adrenal fatigue issues can often go undiagnosed or if you're having issues with dealing with mistakes, then our team is always available at 714-709-8000 to help you. Adrenal fatigue mistakes can also cause problems, worsening agenda, fatigue, and other problems that also exist. So let's go through the three keys to recover from Adrenal Fatigue and how to improve the functioning of your adrenals.

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

So key number one is to learn from someone who's experienced with adrenal fatigue, you don't know what's going wrong, how are you going to fix it. You have to find someone who is knowledgeable about adrenal fatigue, because knowledge is power and find out the root cause. No one's going to care for your body more than yourself. So you need to learn how to get this convoluted syndrome packed away, understand about the neuro endo metabolic stress response, the ups and downs of crash and recovery, the whole journey. And we've documented a lot of this because Dr. Lam himself has gone through adrenal fatigue. He knows what people have gone through, we've seen 1000s of cases. We educate people from all around the world on adrenal fatigue, so education is so key and that's why we share it on our blogs and on when we talk with our patients. That's exactly the purpose of doing this podcast, so that we can tell you that Adrenal Fatigue is real, and instead of self navigating, you should learn from people who have gone through it. We share knowledge on social media, and we're constantly learning with research and from other adrenal fatigue survivors. We do this work because no one in the world truly understands. You know, if you've had this experience where you go to the doctor and say, I think I have adrenal fatigue, and they often don't even know what Adrenal Fatigue is. I know it's very unfortunate, but we deal with these people all the time. Unfortunately, Adrenal Fatigue is not a medical diagnosis and is not taught in medical school and many people are very skeptical. But we know because we've seen so many people, that have gone through it. And so you need to learn from people who have gone through it, who have helped lots of people through it, the key for you is to learn from those who have been through adrenal fatigue. What is key number two?

Dr. Jeremy Lam, MD:

Key number two is to understand the whispers of your body. Now that you know what's going on, the next step is to actually apply some of that to yourself. Each of us have unique bodies, and we're all in different stages of recovery. So we need to be able to take that information and knowledge and apply it to yourself. So how do we do that? It's by teaching you how to listen and understand what your body's telling you. Understanding the whispers has been a lost art in modern medicine. I remember that Western medicines is only about 200 years old. While that has contributed a lot to medical knowledge, it does not really have a monopoly on the world's combined medical knowledge. In fact, people have been healing themselves for 5000 years without lab MRIs or CT scans until the last 100 years. And so how did the physicians in the olden times do it? Well, it's simple. They listen to the body,

Dr. Carrie Lam, MD:

It is vital for you to identify the signals that your body sending you so that you can stop the downward spiral before it's too late. Whether it's low blood sugar, whether it's heart palpitations, whether it's fatigue, whether it's PMS, know which circuit, which part of the neuro endo metabolic stress response, and which circuit you're dealing with, and go find a healthcare practitioner who can help you and look at the whole body rather than just each symptom. Often people see these speciali ts, if they have palpitations see a cardiologist, for gut iss es, see a gastroenterologist but in fact they might be conn cted to each other. So i 's very important that you un erstand the whispers your body' trying to tell you and tha 's key. That's the recovery ke

Dr. Jeremy Lam, MD:

Key number three, to Adrenal Fatigue is to num take a holistic approach. You are not alone in your recovery journey. We have a dedicated team that can help and guide you every step of the way. We take a holistic approach, give you very specific instructions, that ar detailed towards your recover journey, and what stage o adrenal fatigue that you're on We've seen a lot of people trie to self navigate, they go on th internet, they see one thin they hear from their friends and try them. But they always call back asking for help. Lea n from us that it's really impo tant to not only listen to the hispers of your body, but the tepping stones to a full reco ery is to take a holistic appro ch to your recovery. We hope t at this helps you understand wh t may be going on in your body. drenal Fatigue is often ign red by conventional medicine, le ding to long term rehabilitati n and poor health. Just remembe that it's your body and you'r the best judge of whether it's healthy or not. You know that s mething's wrong and no matter what someone or other peop e are telling you don't stop earching until you get the help, the guidance and the feeling tha you need to feel better. So tha ks for being here with us o The Dr. Lam Show. We hope yo found this information hel ful, if you did, please subscrib to this channel so we can c ntinue bringing you more great ontent. If you know anyone else who might benefit from this inf rmation, please share this with hem as well. Remember that e're here to empower yo to take control of your healt .

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