How Should Doctors Treat Adrenal Fatigue?

If you want to change the fruits, you will first have to change the roots. If you want to change the visible, you must first change the invisible. – T. Harv Eker

The use of simplified protocols and models to support adrenal disorders are self-limiting.

– D. Kharrazian, Case Studies & Principles, 2008, 90-91

Proponents of “Adrenal Fatigue” seldom recognize adrenal fatigue is “ALWAYS SECONDARY” to other physiological mechanisms

Dr. David Peterson, DC, DCCN, FAAIM

Adrenal dysfunction is always secondary to physiological mechanisms that need to be identified. Mechanisms that prevent adrenal rehabilitation:

  • Adrenal Uncoupling
  • Loss of Vasomotor Control – The body cannot differentiate Ischemia (decreased blood flow) from Anemia.
  • Anemia – There are 13 different types of Anemia.
  • Insulin Resistance – Causes RBC agglutination resulting in low oxygen delivery to the body.
  • Low cholesterol – Usually due to Inflammation
  • Infection – Increasing immune response.
  • Increased intestinal permeability
  • Surgical menopause
  • Dehydration
  • Inflammation – Immune Response causes Inflammation
  • Chronic SSRI usage
  • Emotional stress
  • Autoimmune – Altered Unregulated Immune Response
  • Heavy metal due to DMT1 upregulation from inflammation/immune dysregulation
  • Environmental antigen burden

It’s frustrating to have persistent symptoms your doctor can’t readily explain. Adrenal fatigue is a term applied to a collection of nonspecific (ubiquitous) symptoms, such as body aches, fatigue, and nervousness, sleep disturbances and digestive problems. The term – Adrenal Fatigue – often shows up in popular health books and on alternative medicine websites, but it isn’t an accepted medical diagnosis unless it is diagnosed as Addison’s disease.

But Doctor, I’m Better On The Adrenal Protocol

What does “Better” mean to you? Are you on a never-ending-treatment-protocol? What happens if you stop it? If you get worse – You are not “Better”. You are dependent.

Most of you have at some time or another heard of some Faith Healer who was seemingly securing marvelous results and possibly some of your patients have deserted you and gone to such people and secured results. A patient with a Vasomotor lesion is very susceptible to any system of therapy that uses enthusiasm for a basis of therapy, but sad to say this enthusiasm only lasts while the patient is near the healer and as soon as this said enthusiasm dies down, the old disease returns.

Dr. M.B. DeJarnette, 1932 Sacro Occipital Technic
The symptoms of “Adrenal Fatigue” are Ubiquitous.

What Do The Profession Influencers Recommend?

This is not a case where the Alternative medicine community knows something the Medical community does not. While it is true the Medical community does not recognize adrenal fatigue. At least, not until it has developed into Addison’s Disease. The Functional Medical community has continued promoting the adrenal fatigue paradigm. Why???

Many “Alternative” Medicine practitioners only changed one thing in their practice. One word – exchanging Alternative for Functional. Nothing else changed.

They are really still “Alternative” hiding in “Functional” clothing. Never bothering to rethink anything from a “Functional” perspective.

These practitioners attended “Functional” weekend seminars drinking from a firehose. On Monday morning most never apply anything from the weekend seminar and never get around to it. While now claiming to be a “Functional” practitioner, charging patients significantly more for the same “Alternative” services.

Those that did make the changes are seeing no change in their patients. These same patients are now rebelling and complaining about all the money they have spent. The practitioner sit through another weekend fire hose class. Only this time, they questioned the Professional Influencer as to why nothing changed for the patient. It’s the Lab Test. Yeah, that’s the ticket.

Doctors complained to Professional Influencers teaching Functional Endocrinology about the lack of success in Adrenal Rehabilitation. Profession Influencers, in their infinite wisdom, blamed the Lab Tests. They found new “Accurate” Lab Test to recommend. Only to repeat the process again and again.

The Professional Influencer blames the Lab Test. It must not be accurate. We will all use a different Lab Test Company. (Yes, this actually happened.) Some time later, Lab Test results look the same. A lack of patient progress remained the same. What did they do? Blame the Lab Test Company. Use this company now.

The Doctors sitting through the Functional Classes no longer trusted lab testing or the seminar information from the Professional Influencer. The Functional Endocrinology seminars are stopped while the Professional Influencer rewrites the seminar information manual. It was about 3-4 years before the class was offered again. For only one or two weekends. Then it disappears again. The Functional Endocrinology – Connecting New Research with Practical Application seminars are currently not being taught.

None of them, the Professional Influencer, his subordinates or the Doctors attending the Functional Endocrinology seminars ever considering the Lab Test was accurately reporting the results. Plus, absolutely, never considering the possibility that the “Adrenal Fatigue” meme was a false meme. Instead, they blamed the Supplement Company. Yeah, that’s the ticket.

Doctors forums had daily posts inquiring which supplement company other Doctors used. A short time later, the same Doctors were again posting inquiries about which supplement companies their peers used.

Is the peer group always correct?

The Doctors go on a quest to find a supplement company that improves the patients condition. None of them ever considering the Supplements were inaccurately used based on a false “Adrenal” meme. Instead, they blamed the “Adrenal Fatigue” meme and claimed it to be incurable.

Doctors complained to Professional Influencers teaching Functional Endocrinology about the lack of success in Adrenal Rehabilitation. Profession Influencers, in their infinite wisdom, blamed the Supplement Company. They found new “Improved” Supplements to recommend. Only to repeat the process again and again.

Doctors in their schooling have been trained to never question the Professional Influencers. Never to question their peer group. The Professional Influencer (AKA: Sales Representative) convincingly tells the Doctors, the Porcine (pig) and Bovine (cow) Glandular supplements will repair the damaged Adrenal glands. The same for the Thyroid.

When I was in school the glandular meme promoted was the patient’s body would use the animal organs extracts to replace the damaged Adrenal Cells. That is correct. I asked a couple of Doctor friends how glandular supplements worked. This is what they told me.

I responded that this was more miraculous than the resurrection of Jesus. (Both were avowed agnostics.) You mean this dead pig or cow hormone gland not only comes back to life after being desiccated – dried and powdered – which may rival the resurrection. But then transmogrifies in a surprising and magical manner; converts into living human glandular tissue, thereby restoring normal glandular function. How fricking cool is that!

One of the basic concepts of glandular therapy is that the oral ingestion of glandular material of a certain animal gland will strengthen the corresponding human gland. The result is a broad general effect indicative of improved glandular function. Thus, glandular therapy increases the tone, function, and/or activity of the corresponding gland.

Enzyme Supplement Company

How Glandular Supplements Really Work.

The glandular supplements are the target of antibodies directed against the distressed organ tissue in the body. The glandular supplements misdirect the focus of the immune cells to the glandular components of the supplements. In addition to fatiguing the Immune System to a point where it has reduced ability to produce an inflammatory immune response. Thereby, reducing the damage being done to the Adrenals or other endocrine glands. Plus, the patient “feels” better. Like taking the batteries out of the Smoke Detector.

Too many people think symptom suppression using Green Allopathy (Supplements) and Allopathy (Drugs) is healthy.

Eventually, the immune system either recovers or produces Forbidden Cytokines and the attack on the adrenals resumes. This is called a Flair, Herx, or a Healing Crisis. Thus feeding the meme that the “Adrenal Fatigue” is incurable.

How Did I Develop A Different Perspective?

First, I was an “Adrenal Fatigue” Doctor after attending the first Functional Endocrinology course by a Professional Influencer. The getting was good for a while. Then patients got restless as nothing was changing. Fortunately, I had several case studying in the “Thyroid” Book, and miraculously all the adrenal patients became “Thyroid” patients.

Because my office was so busy, a Lab Test company gave me six months of unlimited lab testing for adrenals, food allergies, hormones, neurotransmitters and stimulated Cytokine/Chemokines. This was another fortunate event as the Adrenal/Thyroid patients were becoming restless again. Threatening a revolt. Everyone got free lab testing.

The results of the Adrenal and Hormone tests were the same as all the other lab companies. Crap!!! The Professional Influencer advocated not using neurotransmitter testing, because it is impossible to measure brain-neurotransmitters. The Profession Influencer is absolutely correct saying this. It is impossible to measure the 1% of the brain-based neurotransmitters in the body. However, it is possible to measure the 99% of the neuro-endocrine-transmitters in the blood. By this time I knew “Serotonin” is latin for “pertaining to the tone of the blood”. That is correct. Serotonin controls the flow of blood in the body. It was considered that when LSD changed all of that. Timothy Leary tripping/experimenting with acid changed the description of serotonin.

With all the failing Adrenal/Thyroid patients, I decided what the heck, they are leaving anyway. What have I got to lose? So I made neurotransmitter support recommendations for the Adrenal/Hormone/Thyroid patients.

By this time the patient’s were pretty hostile. Not trusting me, but they got a free $1500 lab test. They would give it one more shot.

Imagine my surprise when they came marching up to the office, not demanding to talk to me but wanting more of the supplements I had recommended for their Neurotransmitters. That is correct. All of the failing, angry, frustrated patients were now smiling because of how much better they felt.

Neurotransmitters support the Vasomotor Control as mentioned by Dr. DeJarnette in the quote previously.

Adrenal testing is the “Low-Hanging Fruit” of the Alternative medicine community.

Dr. David Peterson, DC, DCCN, FAAIM
Expecting Adrenal Rehabilitation to work is Insanity.

Adrenal testing is the “Low-Hanging Fruit” of the Alternative medicine community. Adrenal tests do not require a lot of effort and will almost always show adrenal fatigue, like testing the air pressure in a flat tire.

Adrenals are low hanging fruit. Easily picked without any effort. Not the best quality.

The adrenal glands, located on top of the kidneys, produce a number of hormones and neurotransmitters, including cortisol, noradrenalin, adrenaline – the three main stimulatory neurotransmitters, dopamine – a neurotransmitter and stress hormone precursor, DHEA, aldosterone, estrogen, and testosterone in addition to the little know – eticholanolone – the inflammation hormone. Dopamine, norepinephrine and epinephrine are classified as Catecholamines, which are tyrosine-based stress neurotransmitters produced by the adrenal glands during times of psychological stress or low blood sugar levels’.

Melatonin will not work for interrupted sleep for those with low cortisol levels. Low cortisol levels will allow a person to go to sleep and wake up later during the night. Melatonin suppresses cortisol levels and makes adrenal hormone receptor sites more sensitive. Melatonin would work best for those who simply cannot go to sleep.

Cortisol is a corticosteroid hormone produced in the adrenal cortex (part of the adrenal gland). It is commonly known as the primary ‘stress hormone’. It is involved in the response to anxiety and stress, controlled by the Corticotrophin-releasing hormone produced in the pituitary. Elevated cortisol levels tend to increase blood pressure and blood sugar, and reduce the immune responses/capability. Compared with the neurotransmitter adrenaline, it is very slow acting, in neurological terms. Adrenaline can be released in a small fraction of a second, whereas cortisol requires a whole second to be secreted. Cortisol tends to be more implicated in the long term fight or flight response that afflicts those with long term stress, e.g. autoimmune conditions. Of course, overproduction of cortisol through extended periods of stress will result in adrenal burnout and the eventual underproduction of cortisol and other adrenal hormones.

There are many other factors contributing to the stressing of the adrenals glands and impaired neurotransmitter production in general, such as impaired Dopamine/GABA and Serotonin pathways and energy production, excessive Glutamate and Aspartate intake (results in excitotoxicity and disrupts brain chemistry), excessive free radicals, psychological and physical stress, high carbohydrate diet (especially sugar), nutritional deficiencies, inadequate digestive and amino acid conversion processes, prolonged periods of hunger between meals (3 large, square meals a day approach), recreational/legal drug use (caffeine, alcohol, certain anti-depressants, marijuana partaken via methods you can Click here for more info on, speed, meth, cocaine etc.), and birth control pills etc.

For example, it is very difficult to improve adrenal function if a person is anemic. They will not be able to deliver oxygen to mitochondria for ATP energy production and will be dependent upon glycolosis for energy production. Glycolosis is inefficient and places great demands upon the blood sugar/adrenal stabilizing system. The symptoms of any of the thirteen types of anemia are identical to those of adrenal fatigue.

The use of simplified protocols and models to support adrenal disorders are self-limiting. Adrenal dysfunction is always secondary to other physiological mechanisms that need to be identified. The following physiological mechanisms are the root causes preventing the adrenals rehabilitation:

  • Anemia
  • Dysglycemia
  • Low cholesterol
  • Infection
  • Increased intestinal permeability
  • Surgical menopause
  • Dehydration
  • Inflammation
  • Immune Dysregulation
  • Excess Pro-inflammatory cytokines
  • Deficient Inhibitory neurotransmitters
  • Depression medication
  • Emotional stress
  • Autoimmune
  • Heavy metal due to DMT1 upregulation from inflammation/immune dysregulation
  • Environmental antigen burden

– Case Studies & Principles, page 90-91, D. Kharrazian, Author of Why Do I Have Thyroid Symptoms? When My Lab Tests Are Normal.

Are the adrenals involved? Absolutely, but the best way to support them is by correcting the physiological mechanisms causing them to fatigue. The major factor behind adrenal fatigue is usually a Neuro-Endo-Immune system imbalance.

The Neuro-Endo-Immune (NEI) Supersystem incorporates three vital disciplines: Neurology, Endocrinology, and Immunology. Evaluation of the NEI Supersystem – through the measurement of neurotransmitters, hormones, and cytokines – nervous, endocrine, and immune function, are represented respectively. Assessment of these essential biochemical mediators provides important insight into the root causes contributing to adrenal fatigue. The NeuroEndocrine testing should be utilized to simultaneously measure adrenal hormones, cortisol, DHEA, neurotransmitters and hormones. The NeuroEndocrine Comprehensive profile includes additional neurotransmitter metabolites, DOPAC and 5-HIAA, to assist in assessing serotonin and dopamine activity. It also includes the addition of the amino acid taurine, which is useful in confirming the extent of the stress response.

One way to develop a plan to correct adrenal fatigue is to measure neurotransmitter precursors using the Genova ION Profile The ION Profile targets each persons specific needs by integrating three powerful profiles – Organix, and Amino Acids into a single innovative test offering customized intervention options.

The interrelationship of the biochemical processes between the adrenals, different neurotransmitters and hormones involve extremely complex systems of the body: endocrine system, exocrine system, hormonal regulation, immune system, neurological system and brain chemistry. It is extremely complex and finely balanced. Too much or too little of any system can be very detrimental to the body.

Neurotransmitter and hormones must be evaluated. Patients with similar symptoms can have remarkably different metabolic and nutritional needs. Patients with comparable laboratory results often exhibit widely divergent symptoms. Adrenal fatigue can be measured and corrected by specific testing.

Are you interested in having your adrenals checked? I invite you to call today to set up your adrenal test.

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