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Adrenal Exhaustion – Ways to Overcome it

Dr. Cheryl Townsley On Adrenal Stress

“Adrenal Exhaustion & Allergies”

 What Does Adrenal Exhaustion Look Like:

  • increased fatigue;
  •  increased allergies;
  • increased hormone tension (i.e., PMS, mood swings, hot flashes, insomnia, etc.);
  • increased mental depression;
  • memory loss, mental confusion and/or an overall inability to concentrate;
  • increased cravings for sweets;
  • stiffness and/or pain in neck;
  • heart palpitations;
  • increased digestive upset;
  • dry skin and/or hair loss;
  • weight imbalances (i.e., underweight or overweight) especially if excess weight is around the waist area.

Few doctors think to test adrenal function.  We think the adrenals are like a light switch; they are either working (on switch) or not working at all (off switch).  When they are not working at all, a diagnosis of Addison’s Disease will be given.  If there is no diagnosis of Addison’s, then most practitioners will assume (often mistakenly) that the adrenals are fine.

The fact is that the adrenals are like any other endocrine gland. They are capable of being on, being off and being on “dimmer”, which means anything in between.  An experienced health care practitioner can find where you are on that spectrum (1-100%), but many don’t think to check.

The following chart of major complaints and symptoms reflects adrenal stress.  The more of these symptoms you have, the more likely you are moving your adrenal “dimmer” switch towards “0” instead of “100.”  This chart was prepared by John W. Tintera M.D. and is found in his publication, Hypoadrenocorticism, after studying a group of 200 hypo-adrenal individuals.

 Here is how you can interpret the following chart.  In people with exhausted adrenals, 94% experience excessive fatigue, whereas only 39% had skin breakouts.  If you are finding that you have many of these symptoms, you can be pretty assured you are experiencing adrenal exhaustion.

Common Complaints & Symptoms:

Fatigue (Excessive)  94%
PMS Tension85% (women)
Mental depression           79%
Inability to concentrate77%
Craving for sweets  75%
Allergies                                  73%
Apprehension                          71%
Headache 68%
Pain in neck muscles65%
Intervals of confusion 61%
Poor memory59%
Heart palpitations57%
Stomach distress51%
Backache 48%
Faintness/Fainting spells42%
Skin breakouts39%
Compulsive behavior38%

 Physical Signs

Low blood pressure93%
Dry and/or thin skin91%
Scanty perspiration91%
Low basal metabolic rate85%
Sparse body/head hair83%

Adrenal stress is often just diagnosed as “stress” or a psychoneurosis — a problem that is “only in your head.”  The fact is the problem is in your head and also in your body!

 People with strong adrenal genetics can “bounce back” after periods of prolonged physical, mental or emotional stress.  Those with weaker adrenals do not tend to “bounce back.”  In fact they tend to maintain symptoms for years. 

 Drugs tend to add more stress to the body and do nothing to “nourish” the already taxed adrenals.  Treating a person for a psychoneurosis (i.e., tranquilizers) can often be worse than no treatment at all.

Since many people experience allergies and/or inability to lose weight when they have stressed adrenals, it is important to provide the right nourishment and the digestion of this nourishment in order for the adrenals to function.

 Many of you have seen pictures of starving children in Biafra with their thin arms & thin legs, yet extended bellies.  They fill up with fluids because they are starving.  Their bodies retain water to protect the tissues from the acid in the blood caused by the allergenic foods (page 308, The Ultimate Healing System,  Donald Lepore, N.D.).  Many obese people “blow up” for the same reason.

 Virtually all allergies are due to a missing nutrient and the body being in a “stressed” mode —  something is missing, something is “broken” and/or timing of processing is off.  By providing the missing nutrients for common allergies and by supporting the adrenals you can reverse many common “allergies” pretty simply.

Common Allergies

The following allergies are common in people with adrenal stress.  The following chart lists common allergies and the nutrients that are supportive in helping the body overcome the allergies.  The key is to remember that allergies indicate stressed adrenals.  The more we can support the adrenals, with these “tweaks,” we can eliminate stress on the body and begin to restore our health.

Fat allergies for: mayonnaise, meat fats (all meats), milk fats, ice cream and all oils.
Sulphur is the missing mineral . A liquid sulphur is important here!
Sulphur deficiency comes from over consumption of fatty foods, smoking and living in a polluted environment.
Sulphur deficiency can show up in sluggish lymphatic issues, as a result of having the tonsils removed, and excess phlegm (especially in the throat area).
Sunshine is helpful to clear fat allergies.
Foods rich in sulphur include:  bananas, eggs, garlic and onions.

Wheat allergies for: wheat-based foods, breads, pasta, tortillas, crackers –anything with wheat or whole wheat in it.
Magnesium is the missing mineral.
Foods rich in magnesium include:  kelp (green powders), almonds, cashews, green leafy vegetables, apples and figs.
Magnesium deficiencies can show as: gall stones, kidney stones, premature wrinkles, impaired protein metabolism, constipation and diabetes.
Fatty acids help with wheat allergies (i.e., Barlean’s flaxseed oil, fish oil, coconut oil lecithin).
Those with wheat allergies tend to sunburn more easily (comes from using up Vitamin F ? the fat vitamin ? which is why the fats are so important).
Coconut oil is an excellent antidote for sunburns due to wheat allergies.

Corn allergies are similar to wheat allergies in that magnesium and fats are helpful to alleviate it.
Potassium and magnesium are the missing minerals.
Foods rich in potassium include:  raw juices (carrot, dandelion, beet tops, cabbage, parsley and other dark green leafy vegetables), potatoes, oranges, tomatoes, bananas, kelp, parsley, apricots and dates.
A physical sign of potassium deficiency is when the right corner of the mouth dips down.  (A turn-down of the left corner of the mouth indicates a sodium deficiency).

Milk (dairy) allergies
Potassium is the missing mineral. Foods rich in potassium include:  raw juices (carrot, dandelion, beet tops, cabbage, parsley and other dark green leafy vegetables), potatoes, oranges, tomatoes, bananas, kelp, parsley, apricots and dates.
A physical sign of potassium deficiency is when the right corner of the mouth dips down.  (A turn-down of the left corner of the mouth indicates a sodium deficiency)

Yeast allergies  for: yeast, barley, cherries, millet, potatoes, prunes, raisins, rye and walnuts.
Zinc is the missing mineral.
Zinc deficiencies can show as: enlarged prostate, loss of fertility, lowered resistance to infection, slow wound healing skin issues, hair loss and dandruff.
Foods rich in zinc include: lean beef, beef liver, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, brazil nuts, cashews, tuna, peanuts.

Rice allergies for: cinnamon, blueberries, grapes, strawberries, watermelon, wine and pumpkin as well as rice.
Manganese is the missing mineral.
Manganese deficiencies can show as:  tinnitus (especially left ear), sterility, male impotence, sexual indifference, loss of muscle strength and soft tissue bruising (i.e., breast tissue).
Many health food store products use rice as a base for multi-cap vitamins and B vitamins.  People with rice allergies are unable to utilize these products.
Foods rich in manganese include: whole grains, wheat germ, nuts, beans, egg yolks and sunflower seeds.

Oatmeal allergies
Iron is the missing mineral.
Inorganic sources of iron do not antidote this problem ? must be from a whole-food source (yellow dock is one of the best herbs for iron) for the body to assimilate it.
Iron deficiencies can show as:  anaemia, brittle hair, difficulty swallowing, digestive disturbances, dizziness, fragile bones, hair loss, inflammation of the tissue around the mouth, obesity, pallor (being pale), and slowed mental reactions.
Foods rich in iron include:  eggs, fish, liver, meat, poultry, green leafy vegetables and whole grains.

Citrus allergies for: oranges, lemons, grapefruit, tangerines, pineapple, cantaloupe and tomatoes.
Calcium is the missing mineral.
Calcium deficiencies can show as: muscle cramps, tingling in arms and legs, fragile bones, brittle nails, joint pains, tooth decay, nervousness, mental depression and irritability.
Foods rich in calcium include:  dairy products, dark green leafy vegetables, sesame sees, oats, almonds, walnuts and sunflower seeds.
Comfrey (the herb or as tea) can be helpful in these situations.

Nightshades allergies for: potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant, pepper and tobacco.
Niacin (Vitamin B3) is the missing vitamin.
Niacin deficiencies can show as:  grouchiness, nervous system stress, poor carbohydrate, protein and fat metabolism, inadequate production of hydrochloric acid, inadequate bile secretion, poor cholesterol balancing and poor circulation.
Foods rich in niacin include:  beef liver, brewer’s yeast, broccoli, carrots, dates, eggs, fish, and whole wheat products.

Where do you start to get what you need?

Basic Protocol:

  1. Reduce Stress;
  2. New Phyto Multi vitamin and mineral complex (plant based, standardized minerals);
  3. Digestive enzyme and probiotic;
  4. Phytosterol –  Plant sterol complex from plants ( supports Adrenals);
  5. Improve diet;
  6. Exercise
  7. Water;
  8. Rest.

Basic strategies to reduce stress and thereby reduce/eliminate allergies:

  1. Reduce Stress;
  2. Have a “start” time and “stop” time to your day;
  3. Get adequate rest;
  4. Exercise;
  5. Drink plenty of purified water;
  6. R&R Pose;
  7. Learn to say “NO!”


  1. Phyto- mineral and vitamin complex contains the important trace minerals and everything is absorbed!
  2. Eat Whole Foods – these foods have more nutrients compared to packaged foods.
  3. Add a Digestive Enzyme (s) and Probiotic General Enzyme – glyconutrient probiotic

Support the Adrenals – under stress the body needs help

  1. Wild yam supplement – plant sterol
  2. Protein – protein drink from protein source that is non-allergenic to your body glyco protein drink
  3. Minerals  (phyto complex for vitamins and minerals)

Balance Blood Sugar

  1. Eliminate sugar, processed foods and canned foods from the diet;
  2. Sodium-rich foods such as salads (dark leafy greens), alfalfa;
  3. Protein – protein drink (choose one without sugar, either natural or synthetic);
  4. Digestive enzyme for protein – glyco enzyme (Chromium – Phyto minerals and vitamins complex);
  5. B-vitamins – Phyto minerals and vitamins complex  –  You may need to add additional B6 – 50 mg per day.

Add Exercise

  1. Best exercise to start is either rebounding (miniature trampolines), walking or bicycling;
  2. Adding leg raises and sit-ups helps strengthen core muscles which also strengthens the organs in the core of the body.

Clean Environment

  1. Eliminate the use of aluminium cookware and also Teflon – you can use swiss diamond  ware (Robins Kitchens), excellent for cooking;
  2. Use filtered water (Wellness Water) for drinking and cooking.






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