Just Tired? Or Something More? Take This Quick Test

Just Tired? Or is it Something More? Take this Quick Test to Find Out About Your Adrenal Health.

Are you tired all the time?  Wondering if it is just normal — or if it something more?

Awhile ago, I wrote a post on Adrenal Fatigue – The New Epidemic?

Though it is not discussed much in mainstream medicine circles, adrenal fatigue is on the rise.

In fact, I think that it is now affecting people in our Western societies in epidemic proportions.

Including me.

How can you find out if you have it or not?

Well, I have for you the best and easiest test of all.  It is from Theresa Vernon, a licensed acupuncturist and specialist in treating chronic fatigue and adrenal dysfunction whom I worked with for awhile during my healing work.

Back to the test.

It’s a great test, but one that you may wish that you never took.  However, knowing you have a problem means you are on the way to a cure.

Here goes:

The first sign of adrenal fatigue is reliance on stimulants. If the idea of going without your stimulant is an issue, you have adrenal fatigue. There, you have taken the test, now you know.

This test is a direct quote from an article that she wrote entitled, “Metals and the Mind.” You can see from the title of her article that we will be getting into metal toxicity and its relationship to adrenal fatigue in the future.

Oh boy.  Stimulants?  “What do you mean”, you ask, “stimulants?  I don’t take illegal drugs, so what are you talking about?”

Well, how about this list of things that can get your adrenals going — and keep them going:

  • caffeine (still trying to get off coffee or chocolate?  I will post some tips and a great coffee substitute recipe soon!)
  • exercise (do you feel that you need to get a run in or you just can’t make it through the day?)
  • sugar (do you keep reaching for sweets for the temporary energy boost that they give you? Check out What is Candida and Why I Went Sugar Free.)
  • stress (do you push everything to the last minute, feeding off the adrenaline rush that you get from deadlines?)
  • busyness (gotta keep running from one thing to the next to keep life interesting? This post on “Best Autism Therapy” has a tip for you.)

Really anything that “stokes your fire” is a stimulant.

I  really like Theresa’s counter-cultural quote in the same article:

…the body is not designed to be constantly under stress. We are meant to spend time sitting in a hammock somewhere, or weaving a basket!

Now, that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t have any stress in our lives.  In fact, we can’t live without any stress.  But clearly, we have been overdoing it. I have been overdoing it my whole life.  How about you?

In the future, I will be (slowly and with as little stress as possible :-)) sharing with you how I have been working both on my own and with Ms. Vernon to get my adrenals back in balance.  I will also be giving you tips on how I am trying to reduce my dependence on all of the above stimulants — and how you can too!

And really, that is what I hope this site can be.  We all need to be taking better care of ourselves.  Body.  Soul.  Mind.  But surfing the net to find out and implement the latest health tip can cause tons of stress that defeats the whole purpose — and can set us up for worse health problems than we started with.

Anyone care to drop by for some basket weaving?

Other Health Posts You Might Like:

– Could You Have Heavy Metal Poisoning and Not Know It?
– Which Best Essential Oils Company is Best?
Did Vaccines Cause My Son’s Autism?
Incredible Ear Infection Remedy

How did you do on the test?

Which stimulant do you need to work on giving up first?




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  1. Hello Adrienne,

    I was feeling just like this. I went to the Dr and he did some blood work. I found out that I have hypothroid.
    I still am over doing it though! Way too much stress and not enough sleep!
    Thanks for sharing this great post!


    • I had hypothyroid too. I am working on it all. Let’s stay in touch! You might be interested as we get into the metals. They can wreak havoc on your thyroid from what I understand. All of this goes together….candida, thyroid, adrenals, metals. Glad to “meet” you.

      • Hello there I’m tired all the time too, actually exhausted. I’m hypothyroid and have candida as well. I’ve been hypo for 13 years now. Working on them all but still not feeling much better. blessings to you all

        • I am not tired all the time anymore. I am not done healing, but am so much better. I am re-evaluating now and hope to have either new direction or verification that I am on the right path. Take care.

          • Leslie Ridenour says:

            You will have to share with us all, what you have done to get to where you are feeling now! Waiting anxiously just like I was with Best Essential Oils Company results LOL!

            • Planning on it….hang in there :). I am not completely healed for sure…maybe some of this is what you are stuck w/ for good. But I am much better.

      • Adrienne —

        I was just diagnosed with adrenal fatigue along with reverse T3 hypothyroidism. I cried on the way home from the doctor (ND) because finally I had a diagnosis, I was so happy. I felt like a fraud each time I went to the doctors for the past 10+ years complaining of fatigue and lack of energy, not good sleep. They wanted to put me on anti-depressants, and I am the least depressed person I know!

        My adrenals are shot. I have been running on adrenaline (my “stimulant” derived from stress and too much responsibility) since I was in high school. College didn’t offer much break, either, working full time and going to school full time.

        One of my test results (I did the saliva stress test indicator thingy) showed I had excessive high cortisol levels especially at night when I was trying to sleep. So that disrupted my sleep, and without good sleep, I can’t get my body rested to heal… and another portion of that test showed my immune response levels — normal range is 25 – 60 and borderline low is 20-25. My test results were a 6!!! The cause of very low immunity? Chronic excess cortisol levels. DOH! Makes sense now.

        No matter what I do healthy — eat my raw milk kefir, bone broth, coconut oil, no sugar, very little gluten, etc etc… it isn’t going to do anything to help me heal until I QUIT WITH ALL THE STRESS AND WORRYING. I had chicken pox as a kid, and now get shingles outbreaks, sometimes twice a year. It sucks. But these tests explain why — I don’t have the immune system to fight off the viruses. I get a cold when someone coughs 10 feet from me.

        On the plus side, my vitamin D levels are through the roof, so I overcome these colds in a matter of a day or two, when everyone else is sick for weeks… but it would be nice to actually be healthy ALL THE TIME. I have a side business that promotes detox and wellness, etc. and here I am sick all the time. That doesn’t bode well! But at least my heavy metal levels are low since detoxing them all out of me. The tests showed I had cadmium, aluminum and mercury… hmmm.

        p.s. also I was told strongly to NOT exercise if exercising fatigues you… instead of invigorates you. So I stopped going to the gym as I address these issues. I am only 38 and should have a TON of energy. One of my prescriptions is that we are moving to Panama and living the “simple life”. I hope that helps us. At least I can lay in a hammock or weave a basket there!

        • Panama….hmmmm…..I don’t like heat but the hammock sounds good.

        • Leslie Ridenour says:

          What did you do to increase your vitamin D levels (which brand of vit D3 did you take, I know they are not all created equal and if they’re inferior can even hurt more than harm)? What did you take to detox from the heavy metals (was it a supplement?). Moving to Panama sounds wonderful, Lucky you!

          • Rebecca says:

            I just saw this from almost 2 months ago, sorry I didn’t reply sooner.

            I just took the 5,000 IU vitamin D3 supplement from Swanson Vitamins. However, I had been taking it for years and my levels were still on the low end of the range… until I started supplementing with Vitamin K2 as well. I have read research where the vitamin D3 cannot be absorbed or utilized (except via sunlight) unless you take Vitamin K2 along with it. So that is what I did. And the next test I took, doing nothing else but add the K2, my levels shot through the roof. So I am a believer in K2 now.

            Good luck.

        • What saliva test did you take? I took one but it didn’t have all the things you mentioned.

  2. Jennifer says:

    I am so happy to see people spreading the word. I found out I had adrenal fatigue from a saliva test along with VERY low progesterone AND hypothyroid.
    It all works together, or should I say doesn’t work together?
    I have found the greatest help to be pantothenic acid. There is a very good book titled Adrenal Fatigue, the 21st century disease and it made me well on the road to recovery. It has been a year and literally the past few weeks I am getting better. I have done many things to improve my health from diet, relaxing, exercise, dental care and on and on. But there is hope!
    Thanks for sharing your thoughts and spreading the word.

    • Do you just take pantothenic acid alone not the B complex and how many mg of B5? Which has helped you?.
      Any other supplements .I have Hashimoto /Hypothriod and suspect my cause is adrenal fatigue as I get tired after yoga .
      Thank you

  3. How are you doing with your adrenal fatique? I was diagnosed with hypothyroid back in August. I have suspected my thyroid is not really the problem…..it’s my adrenals that is actually causing the thyroid to not function properly. I’m taking lost of extra vitamins and minerals and working on my digestion, but I’m still completely exausted most days. I’m off all sugar–natural and unnatural. What is your progress? Any recommendations?

    • I am actually doing great, Areta. It has not been fun getting the minerals balanced and having the metals come out, but I am 10 months into this and I am starting to see so much progress that I am thrilled. I would love to correspond with you more about this. I used to barely be able to make it around the house and I haven’t had to even nap now for more than a week. I feel, honestly, like I am finally alive again. Are you off fruit? Are you a vegetarian? Have you heard about copper toxicity? These are all things that I want and need to post about but I need to pace myself. You may or may not be taking the right things. This is all quite complicated but fascinating. Keep in touch.

      • Mrs.Momof6 says:

        Adrienne, This is the first wind I have heard of “balancing minerals” together with “heavy metals”… I have suspected for a year now that i have adrenal fatigue, and possibly hypothyroidism (though Dr. testing says not on that one). I have a mouth full of mercury, that I can’t get rid of (too costly and I’m nearly always pregnant or nursing). I have chronic fatigue, and I can’t function without the coffee in the AM. I am definitely experiencing mineral imbalance, especially calcium, potassium, phosphorous, and magnesium. If its not one of them, its another… I can’t seem to ge them to balance for more than a day or two…. Would you have any further thoughts on this? Anything you can point me to to give me a better understanding of the correlation between metals, adrenals, and minerals?? I’ve read Adrenal Fatigue: 21st century, and Magnesium Miracle…. thanks!

        • Hi there. This is all tough stuff. I am currently trying to figure out where I am going w/ my care. The nutritional balancing info is there in the post (the links to Theresa Vernon’s site). How are you figuring that you are balancing your minerals? I am still trying to process all of this and don’t really know how to answer you. I haven’t read the books you mentioned – do you recommend them?

          • Mrs.Momof6 says:


            I would highly recommend both books. Along with Nourishing Traditions, The Mood Cure (Julia Ross), and Curing Tooth Decay (Rami Nagel). All of those plus the thyroid madness site really helped me out. I no longer am CHRONICALLY fatigued, as in, can’t get out of bed and do anything without going weak in the limbs (as in I couldn’t empty and then wash the inside of the fridge, and then put the food back all at one time… I had to wait a couple hours between steps, while I rested!) Now I have much more energy, and no weakness in the limbs.

            But I’m still having a mineral imbalance. I get symptoms like: muscle cramps, muscle twitching, restless legs, constipation… these are typically related to the calcium, potassium, magnesium (as I learned in Magnesium Miracle). I am also pregnant so that is probably what is messing it up now. I did go through a period of more normal balancing…. I’m just rather annoyed with it at the moment.

            Hope those books are helpful to you. I don’t know anything about heavy metals, except that it’s not a good idea to attempt to detox from mercury if you have a mouthful of it. You have to have it removed first, or you actually make yourself sicker.

            God bless,
            Mrs. Mom of 6

        • A few weeks ago I stumbled upon Oil Pulling – have you heard of it? It’s very old and simply a matter of swishing a vegetable oil in your mouth 10-20 minutes on an empty stomach. (I use coconut oil as it doesn’t seem so oily to me). According to what I’ve read (online) there are multiple health benefits – one is ridding your body of metals.

          • I’ve heard about it. I don’t understand the empty stomach part – do you? I did do this for awhile w/ essential oils to heal a problematic root canal and it worked, but I am thinking the oils had more to do w/ it than the coconut oil pulling. I’d love to know your thoughts.

          • I’m no expert, my thoughts on the empty stomach is why swallow all those toxins, do the oil pulling first thing and get them out of your body. However, I’ve read some more involved explanations. It is Hindu medicine, nothing new, the oils originally used were sunflower and safflower I believe. I’ve been doing it for 12 days now and love the way my mouth/teeth/gums feel, no bad breath-no morning breath. Don’t know what else it may do, but I’m happy so far. Here are two good sites for info –
            http://www.earthclinic.com/Remedies/oil_pulling.html and this one has a free ebook on oil pulling http://www.oilpulling.com/index.htm

            BTW, I found your site just a few days ago and I’m truly enjoying it – thanks!

            • Thanks for the kind words!!! I so appreciate them! I thought you are supposed to spit out the oil, so I wouldn’t be swallowing them anyway. Hmmmm…..

              • Yes you spit it out. What doing it on an empty stomach means is that you do it first thing in the morning before drinking or eating anything so you don’t swallow all the gunk that’s in your mouth first thing in the morning. Oops…I can read what the next poster just posted and says the same thing…lol

          • Sorry, I guess I wasn’t clear. If you do the oil pulling on an empty stomach and yes, spit it out, all the toxins are down the drain. But if you eat first, you would swallow all that junk that has been brewing in your mouth. But again, that is just my thoughts. I felt this was fairly harmless so didn’t mind going ahead with it before reading everything in site. Otherwise I’d still be investigating and would have never found all the good stuff here. : ) I’ve never followed a blog before and never commented on one, but the fact the oil pulling is supposed to rid the body of metals, which Mrs.Momof6 is concerned about, I felt I had to share what little I know.

          • A lot of the stuff they have you do on an empty stomach is to aid the liver in the detoxing process.

      • Leslie Ridenour says:

        I am where you once were. I work 12 hr shifts as a nurse (three a week) and somehow (by the grace of God Himself) I am able to muddle through and do those but when I’m not working, I am telling you, I have no energy, zero, zilch to do anything. I am literally in my pajamas most days, all day (lucky for me I don’t have little ones anymore, I have no idea how I would take care of them?). I haven’t even been diagnosed with anything yet, but I KNOW (as a nurse), this isn’t normal and I’m not supposed to feel like this. My daughter has Hashimoto’s, my sister has hypothyroidism (since she was 9 years old) and my mother has it. I have nodules on my thyroid that have been needle biopsied and I was advised to have thyroid removed but didn’t take their advice because they said needle biopsy was “inconclusive for malignancy” and I didn’t want to be stuck on synthetic thyroid medication for the entire rest of my life for no good reason if the pathology came back negative for malignancy. I am supposed to have ultrasounds done every six months but don’t because I have little faith in the medical establishment (it took me 15 years to get my daughter diagnosed with hypothyroidism and PCOS and you don’t even want to know how many physicians she was taken to before this last one 4 years ago took pity on us because we had been through so much and did every test under God’s Green earth until he found out what was wrong with her). So I would love to be where you are now. Do tell all when you get the chance (I know you need to take it easy and not tax your adrenals!).

        • Please check out Theresa Vernon’s site. I linked there in this post, I think. I am very skeptical about everything, and I still have a ways to go but I am functioning fairly well now. Let me know what you think.

    • Areta,

      I notice that your post was almost a year ago, so I hope you are recovered by now. However, since I have been working on my CFS for 3 1/2 years, there is the possibility that you are still struggling. If so, may I suggest looking at using your thyroid meds to jumpstart your adrenals? You can read about it here:


      I am using it currently and am having good success. The link above will also give you the link to a yahoo group where you can get advice from others trying the same protocol. This is a patient-to-patient group. (One beggar showing another where the bread is!)


  4. Wow, is this a I need to be following. Thanx, Adrienne for sharing info and your journey through Adrenal fatigue. I am very interested in everything you say here and will follow this as closely as I can. Post as you are able, I understand balance in that.

    Several yrs ago I was told my adrenals were shot. I was also told by a naturopathic doctor that I was low in progesterone and other hormones, deficient in B-12 and some minerals, low end of normal for thyroid (hypothyroidism runs in the family), have metal toxicities, bad microorganisms, gut imbalance, and have many food sensitivities. It is quite a journey, and I’m still not out of the woods, but am learning lots along the way. I still need to nap, but am no longer an insomniac.

    So far, the GAPS healing diet program (from the book, “Gut and Psychology Syndrome” by Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride) is resulting the most improvement. I have very little abdominal pain now. This is based on the Specific Carbohydrate Diet (not particularly a weight-loss diet, but a whole-body diet healing the gut lining. If one goes through it and happens to need to lose weight or gain weight to be healthy, they probably will.) I am taking several supplements alongside a healing diet, while avoiding gluten, grains, refined sugars, most sweeteners, bad fats, anything refined and foods I’m sensitive to. What do I eat? (Sorry, this healing diet is not vegan/vegetarian, don’t intend to offend anyone.) I eat mostly lots of vegies, farm eggs, healthy fats, some healthy grass-fed meats, goodies made with coconut flour.

    Any health facts and your experiences on adrenal fatigue will be so appreciated. Sorry for the super long post.

    • Thanks for sharing! I’m glad you did – and in long length. The adrenal issue is convoluted but I too am healing. Last night is one of the only bad night’s sleep I’ve had in a long time and we’ve had a lot of stress here. Hopefully I’ll get a nap :-). I hope you continue to hang around. Hope to post more on this soon…..probably the next post will be metal toxicity. But I have 2 contributing writer posts due this week so I’m busy, and our car broke down yesterday again and we’re trying to nail down a purchase of a used car off Ebay today…nothing much going on here :-). I’m on the same diet, but I do eat stevia, xylitol and erythritol. May add some grains back in in 2-4 months. Not sure yet. And all vegans are welcome here though I don’t consider it healthy. I used to be one :-).

      • Leslie Ridenour says:

        I have one latte a day made with only 1/2 tablespoon of coffee (read: I have cut my coffee down to half of what I used to drink which at only one latte a day wasn’t ever much anyway) and the other half Dandy Blend and I sweeten it with stevia and erythritol and put Nutiva coconut oil in it. Before I switched to that, I had been using maple syrup and honey and coconut sugar. I’ve been doing the erythritol (NuNaturals, iherb.com sells 5lb bag for $30.00 and it’s delicious!) and stevia (NuNatural) for months now and can’t imagine sweetening with sugar now because I can’t tell the difference between them now, it tastes just as good as the honey and maple syrup did.

    • Mrs.Momof6 says:

      Wanted to chime in that I also followed GAPS for three months, and found it quite helpful to me too. Though I think I wasn’t careful about getting enough magnesium, and it started getting out of whack at that time. I use GAPS with my spectrum daughter, and see miraculous results. I use GAPS Intro for a gut reset any time someone has to use antibiotics in the house. Its really great. Better if you can stick to it a long time. My daughter has been on it for a year, and she would probably not qualify for her original diagnosis as SPD anymore.

  5. Just a quick note, Adrienne, of the 3 sweeteners you use, Stevia is the safest from what I have read, and mainly if it is the green extract or powder. Better yet, straight from the leaf, since it is less refined. The Stevia plant is quite easy to grow, actually! I grew it (in southwestern OH) and extracted the juice to sweeten stuff. But I have to admit I still mix the white stevia with the green stevia powder since the green does have a strong aftertaste and does not dissolve well by itself.

    Since xylitol and erythritol are alcohol sugars, there are other things to be careful of. It was recommended to me to use them sparingly. Just what I have learned. I’ll have to find my research references and back up what I post.

    Oh, since I really like posting here on your site, let me quickly and properly introduce myself. I am a happily married kinda middle-aged stay-at-home-mom of two great kids, a 3 y/o boy and 7 yr old girl. I’ve struggled w/ health problems progressively since childhood. I have been interested in nutrition since a young adult continually do health research, as time allows (sometimes losing sleep over it, unfortunately.). My first pregnancy magnified my health issues and I could ignore them no longer. That was the first time in my life that I had health insurance and got some tests done. However, conventional doctors couldn’t find anything to substantiate my symptoms, so began my journey into holistic health. Enough for now.

    I’d love to share w/ you and your readers some poems I have written during physically low, yet spiritually inspired times (God has a sense of humor, yes?!). I ask your “permission” since this is your blog and my poems are definitely not w/o the mention of God. W/O God and my faith in Jesus, I’d have no poetical expression to share with others.

    Prayers for you for rest, sleep, peace and boundless energy, mental focus and continued health improvements. I know how challenging it can be to get enough sleep and avoid too much stress. I’m blest to be home all day with my 3 y/o sweet little boy who has mostly outgrown his naps and is into everything!

    Michele K

    • Oh, my most offensive food sensitivities are: Dairy, wheat/gluten, nightshades (peppers, potatoes, tomatoes-mildly), mushrooms, onions, pork, beef-mildly, some fruits, some nuts. Thank goodness I can eat eggs, chicken, turkey and most veggies and coconut form!!!

      • coconut in any form…gosh I’ve been making tons of typos lately.

      • Michele, Really? Coconut? I crave coconut-I have yet to figure that out. I just bashed one up not even an hour ago (how else can you describe freeing the coconut meat from that hard shell??) 😉

    • So sorry for not getting back to you – I am so behind! I think stevia is the safest too and likely you read this post http://wholenewmom.com/health-concerns/is-stevia-safe-is-stevia-bad-for-you-stevia-infertility/

      I would be interested in maybe reading your poems but likely wouldn’t be publishing them since I don’t know how that would fit in here, but maybe. I am just swamped and it’s hard for me to do things like that.

      Thanks for your prayers!!!

  6. Thank you for this post. It is the first one I have seen on adrenal fatigue. I have just started writing about it myself also. More people need to know about this terrible condition.

    • You’re welcome, Sheila. More to come (as long as I am rested enough :-).) It’s such a mess….our hectic lifestyles, toxins, and dietary issues make it a perfect storm for this to happen.

  7. In my experience, Adrenal Fatigue, hypo-thyroidism, and depression all disappeared when I eliminated modern, hybrid wheat from my diet, and going to whole, vegan foods. Interestingly enough, I can eat the heirloom, organic wheat grown by a farmer local to me, and it feels so, so Good. I have a theory that it’s the genetically modified foods that are doing this to us . . . but I have no studies or control groups, so it’s just a pet theory for now.

    The best I’ve EVER felt in my life was when I was raw vegan . . . amazing, that was. I fell off the wagon with my last pregnancy, and am about to jump back on. I’m ready to feel like myself again . . .

    • Hi Annalea. I know wheat is an issue, but so far for me there have been many more issues. Sugar, metals and stress. Actually, the protocol that I am following recommends not much in the way of raw veggies, but I do eat raw (soaked and dehydrated) nuts and seeds.

      The one thing that is odd about what you say is that typically copper toxicity goes hand in hand w/ adrenal issues and zinc (prevalent in animal foods) is helpful in dealing w/ copper toxicity. But I am sure glad that you are better. Just be careful – sometimes veganism can lead to more copper and adrenal issues down the road – so just be careful :-). I was a vegan for many years until my issues got very bad.

    • I agree with the GMO theory, that’s what I think too, as well as the pesticides. Before those were a part of our food the health issues today weren’t a problem back then like they are now.

      • Leslie Ridenour says:

        It’s so sad that we have to be so vigilant and proactive about everything that we put into our bodies because we are being slowly and methodically poisoned and none of us realizes it until we then have the symptoms, which because it is occurring so slowly, are not noticed until they’re obviously at really high levels in our body?

  8. I have a mass on my adrenal gland and am going tomorrow to get a CAT scan to see if it’s changed. I’m trying to learn a bit about it. Isn’t it funny how we run into things? Thanks for the information I found here.

  9. I was wondering what protocol you are doing to get rid of metals. I really want to look into this month. I will say that starting progesterone has helped my adrenals significantly. Thanks for your post. K

  10. I also have adrenal exhaustion and have yet to find the cause. Maybe its my constant running around, lol! As a gemini with adult ADD, stimulation is just necessary…..all joking aside, I really believe its food related and I am having the darnedest time finding what it is. I am gluten free, pasteurized dairy free (raw is okay with me) and had quit caffeine for 2 years without improvement. I had also taken myself off eggs and corn for a while. It is so frustrating!!!!!

    • Hi Christine. I think you are doing great things for your adrenals. Did you check out Theresa Vernon’s site? I would pull sugar next and watch the stress level. I wouldn’t go off eggs unless you think you have a problem with them. I have an article called Metals and the Mind by Theresa that I could forward to you if you are interested. Take care of your self and rest awhile each day. It’s hard but necessary.

      • So off taking corn and eggs from your diet is helpful to recover from adrenal fatigue?

        • Hmmm…I can’t see what comment you are replying to. Did I say something abt corn and eggs? Excess grains are rough on the system. Eggs would only be an issue if you have sensitivities to them that I know of.

  11. I had my second visit to a naturopath today and after analysing my blood work and saliva/urine test, he said I have liver dysfunction, heavy metal body burden and oxidative stress.

    My question is do you guys have to go through something called Comprehensive ALCAT (blood ) sensitivity allergy testing and hormone profile (saliva ) testing? The ALCAT test is $1200 and the other test is for $300. Does that sound right?

    I also got a comprehensive list of stuff to take like Min-Col/calcium intake/DGST and other 10 things. I am very overwhelmed with all the terms thrown at me.

    If anybody can tell me or guide me regarding the tests, I would appreciate it.

    • Hi Sofia.

      Are you working on adrenal burnout? I did go to another few physicians who wanted me to go do all this, but I am finally getting healing without all of it. I am working w/ Theresa Vernon. You can visit her site through the link on this post: Adrenal Fatigue Test. (That’s the one you were on). Anyway, I have no idea about all the testing and I am sure that there is more than one way to heal from this but I can tell you I am geting better. I would think about calling her and asking her what she thinks. I can pass along another article she’s written if you’d like to read it.

    • I have taken the ALCAT twice now, and yes, it is incredibly expensive. If you want to save the money, you can accomplish the same thing (in my opinion) by doing the GAPS diet. It is more work on your part, but very healthy and cost effective. My doctor made me take the test a second time (It has been almost two years since the first) while I was on GAPS. I wish I had refused, as you find out just what your sensitivities are by doing Intro. I refer you to the GAPS book by Dr. Natasha Campbell McBride and her website, GAPS.me


  12. Hi, I have been Dx with adrenal fatigue as well. I have so many supplements for my children and I on the counter that it looks like a natural food store. I would love to learn more about metal toxicity. I am reading the book “what is eating you child”. It is wonderful. We added zinc to my sons diet along with cruciferous blend tablets (doesn’t eat veggies) Well, within 2 weeks he has tried broccoli, spinach, kale, and potatoes. None of them were his favorites but he was willing to eat them. He has a multi sensory disorder so the different textures and flavors in his mouth would make him ill. By taking this it has helped so much. Now if I could just help with his depression and anxiety. Any words of wisom on that? Thanks for all your tips and recipes. We are trying to go whole food. It is so much less expensive to eat crummy. Thanks for showing me how to do it affordable.

    • Hi Julie. If you have specific questions I’d be happy to try. My son is dealing with a lot of anxiety too right now. I am also just starting working with essential oils. Have you looked into those yet? I am currently experimenting with the DoTerra line and I’ll be posting more about it soon. I am really impressed with their products.

      Thanks for your kind words. Please stay in touch. If you have a specific question I can answer it in my Q&A post (I’m overdue for one of those) or on my Facebook page. You can email me at wholenewmom at gmail dot com. Thanks!

  13. Just throwing in my 2 cents worth. About 2 years ago I figured out I had adrenal fatigue, with symptoms I remember as long as 15 years prior. I had tried many things to feel better before I knew–like exersise, vegetarinan and vegan. After intensly researching it online I found all those listed as harmful to adrenal fatigue. I finally came across the Hormome Diet by Dr Natash Turner. She only has about 2 pages on it, but those 2 pages were life changing for me. It has taken 2 years, but I feel better than I have in 20. Good Luck to you all.

    • Pam. My sentiments exactly. So many things make one feel better in the short term, but from what I am reading, they contribute towards adrenal fatigue. I will check out the book. I’d love to know what you did. I am feeling better but not always. From what I understand it’s a deep healing and is going to take time. Thanks in advance!

  14. Adrienne,I did not follow the diet in the book lol, but it has a hormone test and suggestions on how to rebuild your low areas. It also explains what different supplements do and how. The adreanals are responsible for a lot of hormone function, so that is where I started (and during that time I stopped exersising and went off the vegan and vegetarinan). I did that for about a year, and felt tons better then I came across what I call “old lady yoga” it is a much gentler form of yoga with a lot of chair yoga, again feeling better. Then about 6 months ago I wanted to know why teeth don’t heal if bones do…ended up finding Nourishing Traditions and Dr Weston Price info. Dr Price found native cultures with perfect teeth had perfect health. Have been working on that and am feeling the best yet.

    • Interesting. I have scaled way back on exercise, stopped being a vegan (I wasn’t strict, but pretty close) and am taking supplements. I haven’t done yoga, however. I’d love to read that. I tried the WAPF teeth healing protocol but found it very rough. I can handle the butter oil but the marrow was awful. Are you doing the whole shebang for the teeth? I honestly contacted Rami once and sadly found him to be not pleasant.

  15. Adrienne, No, I do not do the whole shebang, because I have found I don’t succeed trying to fit into someone elses habits-so to speak. Currently I take the supplements that fit from the book, but will be weening off some of them as I run out if I continue to do ok. I have adapted the eggnog from the Teeth book (I love eggnog any way)I use about a cup of homemade milk keifer, 2 eggs, raw milk, a sweetner, and from there I may add fruit, or what ever I have or just vanilla and nutmeg. I have added broth and fermented foods from the Nourishing Traditons to our diet. I’m still learning a lot about it and some things i’m trying creative ways to tolerate ..like liver! I have been grinding it with other recommended organ meats into my hamburger meat-I have my local shop do the grinding. 3/4 of the meat is the hamburger. I try to use the butter in cooking instead of plain and I have to have a drink of water to get that cod liver oil down, but I have found it makes enough of a difference to keep on. We don’t get the recommended amount per week from the tooth book, but I feel so much better it will be worth it to continue to add what works.

  16. Dietary recommendations for adrenal fatigue I got from an NCNM-educated ND are:

    DO NOT eat junk food, fast food, caffeinated anything, sugar or any sweeteners in any form (except stevia herb), fruit juice, booze, anything with any kind of flour.

    EAT: mega protein, from the cleanest, closest-to-local dead animal (sorry, but it is better than being dead yourself) sources you can find, with every meal. Especially important at breakfast. Protein powders, like hemp and brown rice, are good, too. Poached eggs are great. Be careful with dairy as many people cannot eat it without developing symptoms. (I can get away with one 6 oz. goat yogurt every few weeks.)

    EAT: mega veggies. Limit starchy ones (potatoes, “yams,” sweet corn, peas to golf-ball sized portion once every few weeks. Eat raw and cooked vegetables WITH EVERY MEAL.

    EAT: mega fat. If you are hungry eating this way, you are not eating enough fat. EVOO, flax oil, hemp oil, pumpkin seed oil, pasture butter, avocados, nuts and seeds.

    EAT: fresh fruit in season, not more than one serving/day. Eat it with a protein source.

    EAT: whole grains/beans in small quantities (less than 1/2 c. per meal). Although she didn’t say it, soaking is probably a good idea.

    Eating like this has helped me a lot. I haven’t deviated much in four years because I hate the way bad food (like most traditional American food) makes me feel.

    I have fibro too, and the things that help me deal the best are clean diet as described above, Feldenkrais, and this incredible product called DermaMag that lets you absorb magnesium through your skin.

    I have been dealing with this stuff for almost 20 years, and I really feel for people who are stuck in the pits of bad health. I do believe it can get substantially better if you keep working at it.

    NDs are the best I have found in dealing with adrenal issues. They can give you herbs and homeopathics to help you feel good enough to get up and cook. They are unfortunately not too clued in or up to date about fibro, but can still help.

    I hope this helps someone out there.

    • Thanks, Karina. Great assortment of things to try. Glad you are feeling so much better!

    • Karina, I realize it has been several months but I find your post very inspiring. I was wondering if you could give me an update or perhaps we could chat further. If so I would be happy to share my info.
      P.s. Adrienne I love the information that has cone from your sharing. Keep it up.

  17. Oh, I forgot coconut oil. Yum.

  18. That’s interesting you are doing well with Theresa’s guidance. I have gotten a lot worse, and have heard from one of her ‘famous’ clients that she is still in adrenal burnout five years after working with her.

    One question: Did she find that you had high copper levels? That’s what she told me, even though mine were very low.

    Anyway, I guess we’re all different, and am glad you’re better.

    • Hello Kelly. I would be very interested in corresponding with you. Feel free to send me an email at wholenewmom at gmail dot com. I was told I had copper and my son’s was the highest she had every seen.

      Take care and I look forward to hearing from you.

  19. Diana Batema says:

    I have a diagnosis of adrenal fatigue through a salivary test (cost $180). I am also corn & wheat gluten intolerant, so I’m gearing up for GAPS. I’m also trying essential oils to help with healing the adrenals – Young Living’s Endoflex brand. I find I have more energy for the entire day without the 3pm crash. I will look at Theresa Vernon’s web site, too. Thanks for posting about your own journey. We all have much to learn from each other.

    • Diana, where in the body you apply the Endoflex and how many drops?. I know NaN has similar calls Vitality but wondering how Endoflex worked using topically .Please let me know where are and how much you applied.Thank you

  20. Generally I love your posts. But this time, I’m failing to see the credibility of the source. An accupuncturist? I’m sorry, but that profession does not fall in to the “scientifically credible” group of people for me.
    I’m having a hard time believing that excitement in your life is a bad thing. Most people, even way back when there was time to sit under a hammock, got more exercise on a daily basis than we do because there was a lot more to do for yourself. I don’t need caffeine, excercize, sugar, or stress. But I do like to stay busy. And as long as those things are a positive influence in your life, I don’t see the problem. For me, I like to garden, cook, and read on the internet. If that’s bad, then maybe I don’t WANT to fix it. Besides, I’m having a hard time taking this advice seriously for the reasons mentioned above, no offense.

    • Hi Tanya. Well, there’s a lot I could say here, but I will try to explain as briefly as possible. First of all, an acupuncturist is regarded as a medical professional in CA, which is where Theresa Vernon lives. That being said, I know that some are better qualified than others in different matters. Theresa has also trained w/ a master of Chinese Medicine. She is not perfect, but she is very smart and I am continually impressed by her expertise and that is not easily done w/ me. I was Pre Med at one of the top universities in the country and was at the top of my class (not #1, but near there.) Anyway, if you peruse Theresa’s site and read articles she has written, you can see that she is not just blowing smoke about metals and the like.

      She had a desperate physical situation and doing Nutritional Balancing, has been healed and her epilepsy is gone as well. Her son was severely mentally ill and is now a practicing chiropractor.

      Too much bad or good excitement is not a good thing. It all revs up your adrenals and taxes them. That, together w congenital issues, dietary issues and toxins, creates a perfect storm for adrenal failure. Some of us are more susceptible than others, but it is truly something to watch.

      Regarding your statement of “I don’t WANT to fix it”, I can completely understand. I don’t want to curb my exercise, my level of activity, my internet usage at night, my late night habits….and I really didn’t want to curb my sugar intake. But it has all become necessary.

      Theresa’s work is based on the work of Paul Eck, a physician who studied hair mineral and heavy metal patterns of over 200,000 patients. It is clearly fascinating. I have not dug into it as much as I hope to but I have had a lot of progress. I hope to learn and share more.

      Blessings…..I am glad you wrote and were honest. But I can tell you that one conversation w/ Theresa and you will see that she knows her stuff.

      • Hi Adrienne,

        I think this is truly interesting. However, I do like to see actual tests and proven results before I believe things, especially if they don’t agree with the lifestyle that makes me feel good and/or the knowledge I’ve already gained. I am interested in learning more about this topic, but skeptical is my default mode. Do you have any references you can share? Of course, I can look them up myself, but if you have them off the top of your head that would make it easier (I do like to be lazy when I can). Sometimes I feel like people turn themselves into living science experiments, which is fine, as long as you understand the risks. But I don’t like to share information with other people until I’m sure that I can back it up with facts.

        • Tanya, I need to pull dinner together and will be out this evening. Tell me what you are interested in. I am going to be interviewing Theresa. There are other things that I look at as well and believe me – I have been through a lot. I too am a skeptic at heart. I just really need to be well and this is working for me better than whatever else I was doing. I assume you perused Theresa’s site. I know it’s not got tons of info but it is interesting. I can maybe fwd you an article and you can google Paul Eck on the internet. Let me know your thoughts. I do know adrenal fatigue and burnout is real. Theresa told me all of her patients who happened to have cancer were all in burnout. I personally also feel that a lot of mainstream medicine is more harmful than most alternative and that a lot of it makes us truly into “living science experiments” as you call it :-). Have you read my posts on the FDA? You would find them interesting I think.

          • I had a hair test to diagnose my adrenal fatigue. The hair indicated I have aluminum toxicity. Incidentally, two grandparents died from Alzheimer’s (known to result from aluminum), and this considering I don’t eat canned food, use foil, or cook in aluminum cookware for this reason. I do wear antiperspirant. My genetic tests confirmed the Alzheimer’s genes which probably means I have a higher propensity to suffer from aluminum poisoning, and my doctors blood test recently confirmed my 23andme gene test. So… In the end, I’d say the hair test is probably a good baseline.

  21. Hi! Just came across this post. Can you point me to your coffee replacement recipe?

  22. can tell if subscribe to your website is charge? Kathy

  23. Having been tested and found to have a “positive marker for thyroid disease”, I have blood drawn yearly. Problem is, T4 is not a good indicator of how the thyroid is functioning. New doctor! If I must be on a replacement, I want a bio-identical hormone. I’m stressed to the max on a daily basis and I’m a caffeine addict. Yup, I need some work. But first, I have to find a day where I’m not too tired to get it all done. Vicious cycle :( Great articles btw-thank you! Oh! And I had all my mercury fillings removed by a natural dentist. Still some left in the tubules but unless i want to lose those teeth-he can’t get it out. I need to chelate it out. Still working on finding the right way to do that.

  24. Thank you Adrienne. That’s my next read. Meanwhile, my 5 year old drinks our well water and plain old Toothpaste without sweeteners or flouride. I’m always shocked by the “healthy snacks” that people send their kids to school with-YUCK! I’m on a basically anti-inflammatory diet. The doctors like to call me “over-protective” of my family. But they haven’t come up with any better solutions.

  25. I’m curious what your stand on childhood vaccines are? I feel pressured into getting them and scared if I don’t give them to my children. What’s a mom to do?? I keep reading all this scary stuff about them!

    • It’s a puzzle. I stopped giving them. Did you read my post on my son and vaccines? There are some very interesting comments. Somewhere on my FB page is a good conversation about it. Maybe I need to do it again. If you’d like me to post your question or get input about good books I am happy to post it again.

  26. I am researching essential oils and came across your article, which lead me to this article and now to a bookmark. I find your site extremely interesting. Thank you.

    Back to comment specifically to this topic.

    I won’t go into to detail about my health, but I do want to share something I’ve started doing that has helped me give up my addiction to caffeine. GINGER ROOT AND LEMON.

    For the last 6 weeks I start my day with an infusion of grated ginger root (about 3-4 tablespoons) and a stick of cinnamon (broken into pieces)that is seeped for 20 minutes, longer if you like it stronger. Sweeten with honey or stevia, at least until you get use to the ginger taste. I also try to add about a tablespoon of ginger juice to the teapot, but that depends upon how bad my hands are feeling and if I’ve pre-squeezed.

    The hotter the better in my opinion, but I will drink it cold, I even add left over “tea” to my next drink.

    Each night I slice 1 lemon, 1 lime and about 2 inches of peeled ginger root, place all in a 2 quart canning jar fill with filtered water add several leaves of mint leaves and place in the refrigerator til morning. I sip this all day in addition to my daily water intake. I find it to be refreshing and flushing. Again, I no longer crave caffeine, not even my ice tea.

    I began drinking both because my research had shown me that they would help with my pain issues and would help with the fatigue, especially the adrenal fatigue. I didn’t really feel like it was making much of a deference until one day I did not get my full “dose” of both and by the end of the day my pain was reaching uncontrollable levels and I was exhausted. I am now a believer. Everyone thinks I’m a bit crazy, but that is ok, it is working for me and I just wanted to share.

    Now I’m off to read more of your articles.

  27. The test, huh? Well I don’t know if I passed or failed. My doctor is trying stimulants, but I am sleeping through them…lol :( I set an alarm for 7am, take the med, and am so tired I go back to sleep and sleep ’til 10:45 or 11am… sometimes later. (I usually go to bed by 10:45pm or 11pm the night before.) I often feel tired around 3pm, and am exhausted by bedtime (feeling as if I have lifted weights and / or run a marathon).

    I have IgG food sensitivities to wheat, barley, rice, soy, dairy, egg, and mango. (Perhaps more, but the test only tested for 94 items.) And I avoid them all.

    I have paraesthesia in my fingers at least once a day (feels like an extreme version of your hands going to sleep – tingling and pain). It is unexplained by all doctors.

    I also suffer coccydynia – extreme pain in the coccyx / tail bone (like someone put it in a pencil sharpener) it is very painful to both sit or rise. The only offered relief is injections of corticosteroids every 3 months.

    And for the past year, my chest, back, and spine have been achey, but an x-ray a year ago showed nothing. (So no explanation)

    Any ideas?

  28. Adrienne,
    Lots of interesting info. Not sure if I fall into any of these…but up until about 3 years ago…I would go go go. I worked 40 – 55 hours a week at work, then I’d run by the grocery, come home, cook dinner, clean up dinner mess, I would literally sweep (I have lots of tile) every single day and mop almost every single day. house was clean, laundry done, 4 kids got to all of their sports and so on without a hitch. Then, in Nov. of 2009 I guess, I started losing weight. It was only about 15 pounds, but I’m already smallish…I use to be 115 to 120. Now I struggle to stay at 103. (No idea if weight loss has a thing to do with the rest) Then I got laid off, and I kinda gave up. I just thought it was being down because of the lay off…but I’m back to work..have been for a while. And I struggle to get up in the mornings…I am droopy eyed by 930 am…I come home and think..I’m just going to relax for a minute…and then I’m barely getting dinner handled by 830 which is ridiculous. I try nightly to get to bed at a decent time but it’s usually 1130 or 12. But lack of sleep isn’t the whole issue…i have had lack of sleep since i began having my kids. Just wondering, since you have done a lot of research and so on if you had any ideas or thoughts. Thanks.

    • The weight loss happened to me as well. It is back on now. I believe it is connected to the adrenals and energy. I am doing a lot of work. The more I learn about heavy metals and adrenals and energy this is all making sense. Did you read my post on heavy metal toxicity?

  29. Hi,

    That’s a great break-down of common stimulants. I diagnosed myself with adrenal fatigue about a year ago. I noticed it getting increasingly difficult to stay away from sugar to make me feel better and relieve stress for a while, but I didn’t quite see it as one of the “stimulants” people talk about needing to start or get through the day. I also wait until right before I need to get things done to do them because I know I can depend on that adrenaline rush to get it done in time. Yikes! I’m taking extra care now to rest and eat a nourishing diet. Thanks for sharing.

  30. Did you mean to say “now affecting people”…?

    “Though it is not discussed much in mainstream medicine circles, adrenal fatigue is on the rise. In fact, I think that it is not affecting people in our Western societies in epidemic proportions.”

    A couple of years ago, after years of trouble, I finally got my teenage daughter to visit a naturopath who tested her and said her adrenal readings were off the chart! I was horrified but not surprised because she runs from one things to the next, but probably most of it was caused by her asthma. She was using her puffers all the time, coughing all the time, and not able to sleep most of the time, but yet had to go to school and to work. She finally (just a couple of months ago) decided she was gluten intolerant at the same time I discovered how bad our modern adulterated wheat is for us–so we both stopped eating anything made with wheat. WOW! What a difference it has made! Within days she stopped coughing all the time and can now sleep, and she’s finally losing weight. Today she told me she barely uses her white puffer! Of course she is much less stressed. The stomach pain I suffered from for probably 4 or 5 years is almost gone.

    Thank God for people like you who are working to wake us all up!

  31. Hi Adrienne,
    I found your website while looking for recipes, and it’s nice to follow along with someone whose health journey is similar to mine. I have hypothyroidism, hypoglycemia, high histamine, pyroluria, adrenal fatigue and IGG sensitivities to malt, dairy, eggs, peanuts, soy, lamb, and beef. I also had high levels of candida.
    I’m taking pantothenic acid and adrenal cortical extract to help the fatigue along with several supplements for the other issues.
    I think you said your son was having anxiety. Maybe it could be caused by pyroluria? There are many symptoms, and the body gets rid of all the b6 and zinc. http://www.joanmathewslarson.com/HRC_2006/…/D_Hide_In_Closet.htm
    I hope you’re feeling better. :)

    • Thanks for sharing. Interestingly enough, my practitioner is very well-versed in pyroluria. We did give him B6 but if I recall, for other reasons, she suspects strongly that he doesn’t have it – thanks, though!

  32. Mum of 3 says:

    Defending Fruit and Other Noncomplex Carbs
    I came across this article today. It spun me out!

    Stevia: increases appetite and elevates adrenalin in that it “tastes” sweet but does not provide glucose to the cell when it’s needing it (perpetuating hypoglycemia).

    • Hi there.

      Sorry for taking so long to get back to you. I was doing some thinking. I don’t know what to say except that that seems like a very odd article to me. It seems she favors Ray Peat quite a bit. She quotes him several times in her post and then has 2 of his works cited as “for further reading.” Well, I was just on his site and all I can say is, “bizarre”. Here is a quote from it:

      Feeding animals a normal diet with the addition of Coca-Cola, or with a similar amount of sucrose, has been found to let them increase their calorie intake by 50% without increasing their weight gain (Bukowiecki, et al., 1983). Although plain sucrose can alleviate the metabolic suppression of an average diet, the effect of sugars in the diet is much more likely to be healthful in the long run when they are associated with an abundance of minerals, as in milk and fruit, which provide potassium and calcium and other protective nutrients.

      Avoiding the starches such as cereals and beans, and using fruits as a major part of the diet helps to minimize the effects of the polyunsaturated fats.

      I really can’t believe he is saying that Coca-Cola has a beneficial effect on animals.

      Furthermore, I have interviewed one of the stevia experts on some of the negative things in the press about stevia and he showed me how so much of the research is skewed. I would need to do a lot more studying but I will add something very compelling from my personal experience. I was hypoglycemic for years and I have been cutting my sugar almost to ‘nil and moved my proteins up and I use a lot of stevia extract. I just got my blood results back (I have been using supplements as well) and my blood sugar is in the normal range finally. I was concerned about some things I had read but at least for now, my concern is abated. And I really struggle w/ not getting hungry enough so I don’t see that borne out in my life at all. Hope that helps!

  33. I just found your site and am interested in learning how you handled your adrenal fatigue. what products you used, nutrition and all that jazz. I’ve been dealing with it for years and just 2 years ago diagnosed myself (since the docs just kept saying I was depressed…ugh) so i’m out here on my own trying to figure it out, do lots of research, try different supplements and spend tons of money. I believe I have systemic candida as well as Hashimotos. I just want to get well and have a life…right now i have nothing. Thanks

    • It’s been a long road, Traci. I am not sure but I think cleaning up my diet (no sugar, no gluten and few grains) has done a lot. I am working on my thyroid and adrenals now but I am in limbo about the treatment. I am trying to keep my protein up, eating nori in the morning and heading to a functional neurologist (chiro w/ extra training) on Monday for the next step. I really wanted to share more but I am not convinced about where I am right now. I will likely post on a tea that has helped me and a tinture that helped for various things. But for overall treatment I can’t say yet – so sorry.

      The candida…have you tried a good candida diet? That’s crucial, IMHO but I am not a medical professional at all. Wish I were….

      • Just saw this. Candida: Greek yogurt, low sugar diet, and APPLE CIDER VINEGAR (Braggs raw, cheap at the Vitamin Shoppe). Drink a shot every day.

  34. I don’t have hypo or hyperthyroid. I do have adrenal fatigue. Are you using oils and if so, what? Or how are you treating? My docs plan was so intense with a million vitamins and special diet I couldn’t do it,

  35. Hi! “adrenal fatigue” isn’t real. Read more here: http://www.adoctorinthehouse.com/2014/09/28/say-adrenal-fatigue-say-um/ Have a great day!

    • Hi Julie. I am not sure I understand your post. Clearly the adrenals get really fatigued and many of us have experienced it. It is a complicated condition for sure, but I don’t see how you can make the claim that adrenal fatigue isn’t real. Thanks.