Functional Medicine Expert, Alejandro Junger, M.D. on Bouncing Back from Adrenal Fatigue
I know that sleep is really important for my overall health. Is there a way stay on track? — CO
The adrenal system is important to maintain healthy energy levels. Here are a few things you can do to support the adrenals, your energy, and overall well-being:
Eat a Healthy Diet
Avoid foods that your body is allergic to or intolerant of—for many, this is dairy and gluten. Taking a break from alcohol, sugar, and processed foods full of chemicals, also helps support your adrenals. Choose foods with a high content of minerals—seaweed is a great snack. Superfoods like maca, lucuma, and acai are beneficial, too, as are smoothies with quality vegetable protein, which can replenish nutrient stores without requiring a lot of digestive work.
Adaptogenic herbs that have been used in Ayurvedic tradition for thousands of years help maintain the body’s healthy function in the face of changing circumstances. They are the key ingredients of the Why Am I So Effing Tired vitamin regimen: Ashwagandha, in particular, is used to support the immune system and help relieve the body and mind of stress. Its benefits are greatly potentiated when combined with two other adaptogens in this blend—amla and bacopa—as well as with licorice, which can help the body maintain healthy cortisol metabolism and better manage stress.
If it’s possible to work a short nap into your day, do it: 20 minutes is much better than nothing. Massages, acupuncture, and acupressure can all help reduce stress and support healthy adrenals as well. Meditation is great too, even if you only have 5 minutes a day.
Go Easy on the Caffeine
Avoid or reduce caffeine intake if you can. The amount of coffee that is acceptable is different for different people. The best way to determine if the amount of coffee you are consuming is too much for you is to stop consuming it. If you have withdrawal symptoms from it, you may be using too much.
Founder of the Clean Program and bestselling author of Clean (among other essential health manuals), LA-based cardiologist Alejandro Junger, M.D. graduated from medical school in Uruguay, where he was born. He completed his postgraduate training in internal medicine at NYU Downtown Hospital and a fellowship in cardiovascular diseases at Lenox Hill Hospital before studying eastern medicine in India. Dr. Junger developed the goop vitamin/supplement protocol, Why Am I So Effing Tired?, designed to help maintain balance in an overtaxed system.
The views expressed in this article intend to highlight alternative studies and induce conversation. They are the views of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of goop, and are for informational purposes only, even if and to the extent that this article features the advice of physicians and medical practitioners. This article is not, nor is it intended to be, a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment, and should never be relied upon for specific medical advice.