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Adrenal Fatigue Could be to Blame for Your Blood Sugar Imbalance


September 21, 2017 | Published by

Blood sugar management is an ever-increasing problem. Diet is a considerable factor in blood sugar levels, but something that gets overlooked in the discussion are your adrenal glands. These small but mighty glands play a crucial role in both high and low blood sugar. The reason for this is cortisol, one of the hormones secreted by the adrenals. One of the primary functions of cortisol is to help the body maintain blood sugar balance.

Once the stimulus is given from the brain that a stress is on, the adrenals respond to the stressor by excreting cortisol. This causes fatty acids and peptides to be converted into blood glucose. It also causes the liver to dump glycogen (two glucose molecules stuck together). Cortisol breaks the glycogen apart, releasing two glucose molecules into the bloodstream, making it readily available to go into the cells. This allows for the creation of ATP (adenosine triphosphate), the energy producer of the body, which enables the flight or flight response to stress.

A problem arises when there’s not enough adrenal function to allow cortisol to rise to the point it needs to for adequate stress response. With adrenal fatigue, this shortage is a daily occurrence. In adrenal fatigue, blood sugar tends to stay low much of the time. This shortage triggers people to prop themselves up with coffee, colas, and other stimulants high in caffeine and sugar. When you do this, you’re looking for that boost to get going, which your body is no longer providing naturally. Caffeine and sugar highs create crashes and comedowns, creating a vicious cycle of highs and (even lower) lows.

Many of the symptoms of adrenal fatigue have to do with blood sugar. This is due to blood sugar’s critical role in promoting energy levels, and the adrenal gland’s role in maintaining blood sugar levels. If there’s an imbalance in blood sugar levels, chances are there’s an issue with adrenal performance as well.

Read more on adrenal fatigue and blood sugar management.

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