Dr. Dhillon's Blog

Your Adrenal Gland is a key to Better Health!!!

Tips for an overall healthy lifestyle are also tips for a healthy adrenal gland function.

Stress management

Routine

Sleep

Exercise

Diet

                                                                                                                                                                                              

Do you have any of the following symptoms?   

Then you could benefit by improving your adrenal gland function!!!


What is the Adrenal Gland?

Your adrenal gland is a small gland that sits on top of each of your kidneys and helps your body deal with stress by releasing a stress hormone called cortisol.

What is the relationship of the adrenal gland with stress?

First of all, your body cannot tell the difference between mental, emotional, or physical stress.  In a practical sense, that means there is no difference between you working a long hard day at the office crunching numbers, or a struggling with a recent breakup with a partner, or working a physically taxing job that requires heavy lifting.   In other words, all of those stressors will receive an equivalent response from your adrenal gland. The response is to specifically increase your stress hormones, so you can better adapt to and deal with stress.  In essence it ensures your survival.

Survival of our species and your personal survival

You’ve probably heard of the “Fight of Flight” response. It is intimately connected with your adrenal glands.

This story takes us back thousands of years, when humans were struggling for survival.  At the time, the next meal required great effort and safety was paramount. So finding lunch was just as important as avoiding becoming someone else’s lunch!

For example, what if you were being attacked by a tiger in the jungle? There are two responses to that attack. Run and hide or attack. Both allow survival and this precisely is a fight or flight response. Humans have evolved and the environment has changed from a real jungle to an urban jungle. When you walk downtown you don’t expect to be attacked by a tiger on the street. But there are different “tigers” ready to pounce. One “tiger” may be your boss or co-worker that verbally attacks you.

 When you respond, it’s very likely you won’t resort to fisticuffs or grab a spear, but instead say something back to them, run and hide or say nothing and just try to ignore them.  Another example of “fight or flight” response is being stuck in traffic when you are late for work or an appointment and emotions such as frustration, anger, and worry begin to surface. At an emotional level, you can be anxious or worried and fearful of your boss and being late or you can be agitated, frustrated and angry.

If this happens to you, then you are experiencing fight or flight and your stress hormones are released —you are in heightened survival mode; your body responds by increasing your heart rate, increasing your respiratory rate, dilating your pupils. Overtime, especially if you have these feelings on a daily basis, this chronic release of stress hormone begins to create unpleasant symptoms that you may be experiencing.  

So that same feeling of being late for an appointment, tired after a long day at the office, or verbally attacked by your boss, having relationship issues with your partner or working a strenuous job that requires heavy lifting can lead to health problems.      

What is your body’s response to stress?

You’ve probably heard of adrenalin; cortisol is a hormone that is similar to adrenalin. When adrenalin is released we may feel a rush of excitement, anger, frustration, burst of energy. Below is a description of Maladaptive Stress Syndrome that describes your body’s response to stress.

 

TREATMENT:  So how do we prevent and treat these problems that are associated with maladaptive stress syndrome?

Each stage of MSS has its appropriate treatment. To determine which stage you’re in, lab testing and proper diagnosis is required by your naturopath.

 

Dr. Dhillon, ND

Better Health for a Better You

 

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