The FUNCTIONAL MEDICINE style that we practice is the Kalish Method. In working with patients we evaluate the HORMONES for adrenal fatigue, GUT for "LEAKY GUT" or infections and your DETOXIFICATION pathways to see how well the body is removing the yucky stuff out of the body.
THE FIRST STEP: Your adrenal glands are each no bigger than a walnut and weigh less
than a grape, yet are responsible for one of the most important
functions in your body: managing your stress.
When your adrenal glands are overtaxed, a condition known as adrenal
fatigue or adrenal exhaustion sets in, which in turn can set a cascade
of disease processes into motion. One tell-tale sign of adrenal burnout
is feeling chronically fatigued.
It’s estimated that up to 80 percent of adults experience adrenal
fatigue during their lifetimes, yet it remains one of the most
under-diagnosed illnesses in the United States.
The basis of adrenal fatigue or
burnout is stress, which over time can tax your adrenal glands to the point of
causing other health problems, such as the "BIG FIVE":
GI or “GUT” problems
The precipitating event for most
people is a period of intense emotional stress. We find in our practice that approximately 95 percent of his patients report having experienced major
emotional stress around the time their health began to falter.
Three Stages of Adrenal Burnout
are divided into three general categories: stage one, stage two, and stage
In a stage one pattern, your cortisol levels are very high, and you’re
under a lot of stress. But it’s usually an enjoyable type of stress. Perhaps
you’re a student or a new parent, which is stressful, yet you’re enjoying
yourself and you feel more charged and alive than anything else. You need that
excitement. Your body requires it. It’s somewhat like exercise. But the key is
to have the adaptability and the resiliency to absorb that stress, enjoy it,
benefit from it, and then dissipate it.
If you don’t sufficiently rest and
recharge, your adrenals will get overtaxed, causing your cortisol levels to
drop, and this is where most people notice there’s a problem.If you stay in this high-cortisol
state for long enough – at stage one – you eventually go to stage two.
two means that the cortisol levels are now starting to fail. This is when
people start to gain weight. This is when people start to not be able to sleep.
This is when your sex drive starts to go away. This is when people just know
that there’s some health problem.- Many of our patients report these symptoms at their initial consultation. If you stay at stage two long
enough, and you fail to change your lifestyle to address your failing adrenals
such as not eating right, not resting, and not exercising, you eventually enter
In Stage three adrenal fatigue, your adrenals are actually burned out and your cortisol
levels are low all the time, causing you to feel chronically fatigued and
unable to recover your energy despite resting.
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Causes of Adrenal Dysfunction
There are three main reasons for
adrenal fatigue and dysfunction:
stress: typically related to grief or loss
2. Poor diet: Eating too many carbs can disrupt cortisol and a certain
group of corticosteroids (a blood pressure-stabilizing hormone), and the
Standard American Diet is a perfect recipe for destroying your adrenal
One of the
most important things that cortisol does is regulating secretory IgA in your
gut which is our immune system. This means that the immune response in your gut is controlled by
cortisol. Therefore, if you’re stressed, the immune response in your gut suffers (under functions) and
the gut tissue becomes damaged and "LEAKY" and good bacteria give way to bad bacteria,
causing immune dysregulation that is centered in and around your gut.
important components to address this problem are to 1) regularly eat fermented
foods, which will dramatically increase the beneficial bacteria in your body
(which automatically will help decrease pathogenic bacteria), and 2) to eat a
diet low in sugars and carbs, as that will also promote a healthy gut flora.
inflammation in your body:
Inflammation is the hallmark of virtually every disease you can think of, from
diabetes to cancer, and when chronic, it stresses your system, including your
little-known strategy to counter inflammation is grounding or earthing, which
requires nothing more than taking off your shoes and walking barefoot outside,
ideally on dewy grass or on the beach. Connecting your soles to the earth will
massively increase the influx of free electrons into your body, which helps
dissipate inflammation due to their potent anti-inflammatory action.
Another common hormonal cause of
adrenal fatigue is hypothyroidism or underactive thyroid. Thyroid function is
diagnosed by a blood test, but there’s some controversy over what is normal and
what’s not. Many alternative doctors feel the conventional reference ranges are
far too broad, and opt to treat people exhibiting sub-clinical thyroid
What happens to the
thyroid and the adrenals is that as the cortisol levels go up, one of the
normal body mechanisms is to downregulate thyroid. So, most everybody with high cortisol
is going to have lower than ideal thyroid hormone levels. At that point, it
becomes a decision as to if you want to work on the adrenals, work on thyroid,
or work on both together...
More than 90 percent of the time,
the adrenal healing program is enough to restore thyroid function. The biggest reason for doing the adrenal testing and treatment first, is that when you start taking thyroid hormones
your internal production of thyroid hormones drop. With the adrenal glands,
it’s the opposite. When you start to take these adrenal-support products, your
internal production of adrenal hormones comes back. If we can restore adrenal
function, then we can save the person from having to be on thyroid medications
potentially for the rest of their life.
to Test Your Adrenal Function
In the allopathic or conventional medical world you would see an
endocrinologist who would evaluate your adrenal glands, or perhaps a doctor of
internal medicine. Unfortunately, they tend to primarily test for specific
diseases like Addison’s disease or Cushing’s disease, both of which are
When your doctor thinks about the adrenal glands, they really only think about
these extreme medical conditions that are not going to be what most suffer
from. The conventional medical provider will conduct medical testing that determines whether you have one
of these rare endocrine disorders or not.
In the conventional medical world most doctors really are not aware of the kinds of lab tests called a functional adrenal
stress profile. It means that we the Functional Medicine practitioner, is not worried about the disease processes as
an endocrinologist would be, but we’re really looking at functional problems. Those are problems that are not
going to send people to the hospital, but are more of disrupting your
day-to-day life. These would be fatigue, depression, problems with weight gain,
and problems with sleep....the BIG FIVE.
The type of Functional Medicine testing that we utilize to evaluating your adrenal function is done by taking four saliva samples over the course
of a day. This maps out your circadian rhythm, showing how your cortisol levels
rise and fall throughout your day. Saliva is collected at approximately
four-hour intervals: first thing in the morning upon waking, then at noon, late
afternoon, and again at night before going to bed.From the test result we find out exactly how your body is dealing with the stress it is experiencing. When Adrenal Fatigue is present a customized treatment protocol is developed to allow the adrenals to heal naturally.
to Normalize Dysfunctional Adrenals
To normalizing dysfunctional adrenals and restoring normal adrenal function is what your customized "Health Plan" is all about. It’s
a clinically validated method that’s been used for a long time, yet most
physicians are still not aware of it.
What we find is that if we just
restore what’s missing in the person for a period of six months or maybe at the
most 12 months, the adrenal glands and the internal production of these
hormones comes back. By supporting the adrenals properly we can actually restoring the normal production of these
hormones in the body. The treatments, therefore, are relatively short-term; six
months to a year. The only way we’ve found to do this real repair process is to
use these really low dosages of DHEA and pregnenolone plus the proper nutritional supplementation over a period of time. Along with health & lifestyle coaching, stress management is the key to helping your body rebuild your health!
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To learn more about how we address Step 2 - Leaky Gut and Step 3 - Detox issues please contact us directly at the office.
(Contact Us Today!) Call our office for more details on how to begin your Functional Medicine health analysis today!