Tuesday, June 3, 2014

EDCs and adrenal fatigue

For the past few months, I have been dealing with crippling fatigue, dizziness and blackouts. I've seen several doctors and while I am still awaiting some test results, doctors are pointing in the direction of low cortisol and adrenal insufficiency. That got me to thinking about whether endocrine disrupting chemicals could affect the adrenal gland and cortisol levels.

Image from:http://www.brainleadersandlearners.com/general/the-brain-on-cortisol/

Cortisol is a steroid stress hormone, released when you are stressed. It helps regulate the immune system, blood pressure, and balance blood sugar. Symptoms of low cortisol include; dizziness, weakness, weight loss, craving salt, irregular menstrual cycles, and hyperpigmentation.
Heavy metals, especially mercury,  can affect the adrenal glands, although chemicals found in everyday household personal care products can also affect them. Assault from environmental toxins can create a cycle where the adrenal glands become more and more stressed, leading to greater fatigue. While I'm not sure this is what is causing my health issues, it does point out that EDCs can harm another body part.