It’s depressing to read an article confirming over and over that your adrenal glands are fried from your super stressful job, lack of sleep and gallons of coffee you drink a day. What you really need is a solution. You need to know exactly how you’re going to change your lifestyle to support you’re recovering adrenals. Don’t worry, this isn’t one of those cliche’ meditate more and get 8 hours of sleep kind of posts. I want to talk about the power of foods and how you’re going to use what you eat to revive your bullied adrenals. Today, I am going to give you a detailed adrenal fatigue diet plan that’s both actionable and sustainable. Read on!
If you missed last weeks post we talk about how Adrenal Fatigue can cause you back pain. You can get it here
There will come a day when people will wake up to how powerful our daily diet is when it comes to healing our body. I have only hit the tip of the iceberg with things that I have experimented on my own body. I can only imagine how powerful it can be if you truly were to surrender the healing process over to a holistic way of life. To me, the easiest way to treat Adrenal Fatigue is through diet. What you eat is YOUR choice whether good or bad. At the end of the day, it’s YOUR choice. Things like big projects at work, arguments in a relationship or lack of financial stability are usually things that you can’t simply change overnight. They take time and energy. When it comes to your diet, you have complete control and can take action TODAY.
The goal of eating to heal Adrenal Fatigue is to fill your plate with foods that not only will support adrenal function but aid in the recovery and repair of your body. Luckily, most healthy diets include all of these awesome results. If you know you’re dealing with some level of Adrenal Fatigue then listen up.
I am going to break your Adrenal Fatigue diet into 2 basic steps.
Cut out what could be causing the adrenal stress.
When putting together the best Adrenal fatigue diet plan, you must first start with what could be causing the irritation to begin with. The big $2 dollar phrase I am going to talk about here is “food intolerance’s”. I’m not just talking about how dairy makes you gassy. I want to really look at the most common food intolerance’s and how you can do an audit on your own body to rule some food sources out. The goal with taking these specific food sources out of your diet is to allow your guts to work properly. Too many people think that once the food you eat hits the belly, that’s where all the magic happens. Wrong. That’s just where the food gets broken down before it gets shipped off to all the energy systems that allow your body to function. The true power house of the body is your guts. This is where the food is absorbed but when you’re packing your guts full of foods that your body rejects it’s not doing anything but harm. A poor functioning gut typically leads to lack of energy, muscle weakness and an increase in inflammation. So the name of the game is cut out foods that could be causing irritation in your guts. Healthier guts lead to healthier systems and the production of supporting hormones.
What are some common food intolerances?
Well, there are actually over 140 foods that have been put on a list of foods that cause allergies or are linked to intolerance’s but studies have shown that 90% of food allergies can be condensed down to only 8 heavy hitters. I don’t want you to confuse the difference between a food intolerance and a food allergy. They are different. The biggest difference is the fact that food allergies trigger the immune system where a food intolerance doesn’t. The impact a food intolerance has on the body can differ with the amount consumed and how often you eat them. A food allergy is more severe. Even the smallest bit can trigger a massive response in the body and put you in the hospital. When you look at certain foods, just because you are not allergic to it doesn’t mean your body isn’t intolerant to it. Check out this list of common food allergies:
8 of the most common food allergies
Eggs (from chickens)
Shell Fish (crabs, lobster, shrimp etc.)
Now, from personal experience, I notice a change in my body after eating 2 of these sources one being the dairy and the other being eggs. Whether it’s sour cream, milk or cheese I have this thick mucous in my mouth after consuming it along with the urge to clear my throat and when I eat eggs my nose gets little runny. None of these have ever put me in the hospital, it’s more of a subtle change that I notice after eating them. The severity of the symptoms will be different for everyone. I share my own experience to give you an example of someone who doesn’t have a massive allergic reaction but simply has these weird symptoms after eating them. If the food I am consuming is making changes in my body to bring about these symptoms, its having the same effect on the rest of my body. Your body is trying to process whatever it is that is causing these issues. That means all of your systems and organs are working harder to process and get rid of the food.
What are the common signs of a food intolerance?
Again, the symptoms can vary with each food source and depend on the amount consumed and how often you eat them. I know for me, there was a good 2-year stint where I was eating 4+ eggs a day like clockwork. Not that eggs are unhealthy but this can easily have been a reason why I have built a slight intolerance to them.
Common signs of a food intolerance
- Runny nose
- Feeling under the weather
- Stomach ache
- Irritable bowel
This is where you come in. What I suggest to anyone looking to dial in their nutrition is keep a food log. Make a list of all the foods you think you have an intolerance to and every time you eat those foods pay close attention to how your body response after. For better results try to eat the foods by them-selves. It’s hard to tell what you have an intolerance too if you’re consuming a couple slices of pizza. Instead, eat a couple slices of cheese or bread and see how your body reacts. Repeat this for every ingredient on your list.
Your Adrenal fatigue diet plan should look like this.
Now that you have taken out all of the problem foods it’s time to dial your Adrenal Fatigue diet plan in even further and talk about what foods to add to your diet that will help repair and maintain healthy adrenal glands. When trying to build the perfect Adrenal fatigue diet plan you have to break the mold to the common American Diet. You have to be different. No more processed foods, sodas or added sugar. I know this is what everyone eats and there are lots of “healthy looking” people who eat this stuff but right now you’re talking about healing something you can’t physically see. That is the number one killer with eating non-life-supporting foods. Nobody can see what it’s doing to them on the inside. We score our health based off of the scale. Your size doesn’t matter when it comes to how healthy your guts are. I know lots of extremely skinny people who eat terrible. You call them fortunate to have that ability and I call them unfortunate because they don’t have anything to compare their health too until it’s too late. Your Adrenal fatigue diet has to be full of nutrient rich foods and as little of the “American diet” stuff as possible.
There are a few different people who will argue supporting the use of intermittent fasting when repairing poor functional Adrenal glands. From my research and my personal experience with intermittent fasting for years this is what I have come up with.
Just like your mom always told you, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. Sure there are some short-term benefits to different forms of fasting but at the end of the day, there is nothing better than breaking your 8-12 hour fast (fasting while you sleep) then a solid protein and healthy carb. This is where the issue with fasting comes in. While your fasting, your body is missing out on the protein and carbs that it needs for healthy function. Not only that, while you’re fasting your liver produces glucose which then spikes Cortisol and Catecholamines which are both pumped out by your Adrenal glands. If your fasting long enough and often enough your adrenal hormones become depleted. Combine this with already poor functional adrenals from stress, too much caffeine, and a poor diet and you have yourself a vicious cycle of Adrenal beat down.
The time in between breakfast and dinner…
I didn’t say lunch or dinner because while you are focusing on restoring your adrenal function I want you to think about small meals throughout the day. If you were coming to me for normal healthy eating I would just suggest 3 solid meals a day but breaking the bigger meals up into smaller meals puts less stress on the body. Doing it this way allows the body to balance the blood sugar levels along with reducing cortisol spikes.
Add these ingredients to your daily meals.
Protein: Beef, Organic Fish, eggs, organic chicken, beans, quality protein powder.
You see I added fish and eggs to this list which are also on the most common allergy list. Remember, just because it’s on the food allergy list doesn’t mean it’s unhealthy. Each individual reading this post will have a different list of foods they can eat. Stick to the ones that help you and throw out the ones that don’t. If one of these listed gives you problems experiment with an all organic source. Sometimes with food intolerance, the issue is with how the foods are grown and processed.
My go to sources of fats are Avocados and Coconut Oil. On occasion ill eat nuts and butter but I try to limit my dairy to almost none at all.
Sweet potato, Red potato and White rice and Quinoa. I stick to these 95% of the time.
A good Adrenal fatigue diet plan will consist of moderate levels of carbs. You don’t want to over do the carbs nor do you want to cut them out altogether. Carbs can be funny. You really need to experiment with the amount of carbs your taking in to see where your sweet spot is. Three baseline ranges can be 150g, 200g or 250g. Test each one of these ranges on your own body. Things to look for are, energy levels, poop quality (yes, I said poop) and increased body temperature (you want a temp closer to 98.6). You have a sweet spot, you just have to find out what that is. Once you have it figured out, you can break the carbs up over the amount of meals you’re eating while you restore your Adrenal function.
Bonus Gut Health Source
Fermented drinks and food. I love this stuff. Kimchi, pickles, Sauerkraut and the most common drink being Kombucha. All of these are awesome at promoting easier digestion, increasing healthy flora in your guts and overall gut health. Remember, your guts are the window to the rest of your body. Everything you eat either benefits or hinders the guts ability to regulate the body and deliver the nutrients it needs.
So remember, think slow and easy when it comes to restoring your Adrenal health. You don’t want to bombard it with junk foods. Stick to your new meal plan for at least 4-6 months. There are sever cases of Adrenal Fatigue where extended periods of time are needed but for the average person 4-6 weeks with a dedicated focus is great. Your goal isn’t perfection. If you scramble one weekend it’s NOT the end of the world. Just pick back up where you left off and keep your head to the ground.
Hope this helps!
Fill me in on anything you have found to help with Adrenal Fatigue! Comment below.