Suggestions For Low Dhea And Low Cortisol

edited September 2014 in General Discussion

Initially, predicting high cortisol levels from my symptoms, the tests have shown that I can barely make any in the morning and then my body is just exhausted from that little effort and evening levels are barely existent. The practitioner I see has suggested that after living (being raised) in a highly stressful environment my body is pretty much worn out. They have said if my morning markers where any lower, I would be at chronic fatigue level and im heading towards there.


 


I see a lot of info here discussing balancing out high cortisol but I'm interested to see if anyone has any suggestions for very low cortisol levels.


 


At the moment, I carry around a lot of fat (scale says 28.6% but that could be inaccurate). I weigh 61kg which is 135. I'm 5'7". I've basically turned into one of those skinny fat people despite resistance training. I'm pear shaped so I carry less fat up top and I can see the definition and more lean muscle but the fat remains and I just seem to get larger (using clothes as an indicator.. this week my size 26 jeans no longer fit). 


 


My sleep is not great. I aim for bed anywhere from 9pm-10pm but today, for example, I woke up twice and then finally for the third time at 4am and have been wide awake since. Most days I wake once or twice but can at least sleep till 6:30am. It's not great sleep but its at least more sleep.


 


My blood sugar levels are generally normal, 3.7 to 4.9 mmol/L through out the day. I measured in at 4.9 today at 4am when I woke up for no reason. Not seeing any clues there.


 


 

Any ideas or thoughts would be greatly appreciated :)

 

 

Weird Symptom Summary Update @ 2nd sept 2014)

 

WEIGHT

- 1 year ago: Fast fat loss. Down to 5% body fat with high muscle retention and lowest weight at 38kg. Hard to gain weight or put on fat, but muscle appeared to actually grow and increase with every kilo i gained on the scale.

- 2 months ago: Weight back up to 53kg and 17.5% body fat. Cycle returns and fast high fat gain over three weeks (+10% +8kg): Currently 61kg @ 28.9% body fat. Most fat around waist, and lower back. I have pot belly. Think Buddha!

 

SLEEP SINCE JUNE

- Disturbed sleep with waking 2-4 times a night. Mainly waking @ 3:30-4am - Seems to be fixed with protein immediately upon waking.

- No problems getting to sleep

- During my low fat stage I slept like a baby and woke up full of energy despite low weight

 

BLOOD SUGAR LEVEL

- Stable before and after meals.

- Diet: fats, protein and low carb greens and veg in day. Carbs added to meals in evening.

 

MUSCLE GROWTH

- Muscle depletion: NONE, muscle increase without exercise during the low body fat stage. How someone can spend most days lying around in bed and look more toned is beyond me.

- Muscle remains the same despite fat increase

- According to the scale my lean muscle measure is exactly the same for me now at 61kg as it was at 52kg and also at 46kg.

 

TESTS

- Low cortisol in morning to almost no cortisol at night

- Low DHEA

 

ENERGY: THE PART THAT MAKES THE LEAST AMOUNT OF SENSE IN ALL OF THIS

- High with little or no fatigue (today I'm practically bouncing off the walls, despite my cortisol levels being nowhere close to where they need to be in the mornings)

- Especially not tired in the evenings when I have almost no cortisol

- I can be a little groggy in the mornings. I remember feeling more energized in the mornings in the low body fat stage. I'm a bit slow to start the day but its winter here and still dark and cold when I get up. Am waiting for spring to see if its a season thing or a me thing.

"Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning."

Comments

  • For stress and cortisol levels, you'll want all the B vitamins but especially B5. Thorne makes a good supplement I think they call Stress B Complex, which has a lot of the B vitamins plus extra B5.


     


    Take Vitamin C as well as Magnesium if you're not already. Most people prefer glycinate for the form of magnesium. Others love Natural Calm magnesium, which is a powder, I believe, that you mix into liquid (I forget what form it is). I'd take zinc as well.


     


    Himalayan pink salt taken every morning when you first wake up will help. Start slow. Too much and you'll spend a lot of time in the bathroom with an upset stomach.


     


    I would normally recommend adaptogenic herbs, but others on here will disagree as they are stimulatory and people respond differently, especially with adrenal issues. Having said that, I've heard good things about using a high quality Reishi supplement for helping to elevate cortisol levels. If you take this, I'd start with small doses and work my way up and see how you feel.


     


    You may be better off trying the other supplements first, see how they help and only later testing any adaptogenic herbs.


     


    Make any and all lifestyle changes that you can that will reduce your stress levels. You don't want to follow the Bulletproof diet with adrenal issues. Eat plenty of carbs every day. Sweet potatoes are good. White rice is lower down the list, but it's one I'd eat. Try and stay with the good carbs, but make sure you do get carbs in you daily. Maybe 150 grams a day.


     


    If you can get one, buy an EmWave and use it to manage stress and more easily handle what comes your way at times.


     


    Forgive. It's far more powerful than many realize. At the very least, you're doing it for yourself and not to let anyone else "off the hook" so to speak. Do forgive, though, and let go of any emotional hurt as much as you can.


     


    I'd add in a high quality fish oil or cod liver oil too (taken with butter oil, like Green Pastures fermented cod liver oil/butter oil blend capsules or gel) or either take with a meal where you have some Kerrygold or other grass fed butter. The fish oil or cod liver oil can often help with stress and help bring hormone levels into a healthy range.


     


    Also, high stress can cause low stomach acid, and you may not be absorbing what you're eating or the supplements you're taking very well. So a HCL supplement can help. I've used Now Foods Betaine HCL before with good success.


     


    Don't exercise heavy with adrenal fatigue. If you want body composition results, focus on your diet for now and eating better, and just get out and walk or do light exercise until your adrenals heal.


     


    And while walking, get out in the sunshine and walk barefoot. Well, walk barefoot any time (in the cool of the day or whenever) and get earthing or grounding benefits. It can be a big stress reliever and has other benefits as well.


     


    Oh, and it's free, which is always a bonus :)

  • dazdaz today is a good day ✭✭✭

    hi izabela, are you 'doing' low carb...? if you are, i've just seen a new post over at chris kresser site called, Is a Low-Carb Diet Ruining Your Health?


    Definitely worth a read if you are doing low carb & not feeling the best.


    The article covers quite a bit of ground, and links to a number of other articles.


    Make sure you read the comments as well.


     


    good luck


    fake it till you make it

  • DManDMan Master of Arts ✭✭✭
    edited August 2014

    I find it very interesting that it's being said that wow low carb is bad. It can be bad (as described in the article by CK) but I don't feel better on a more carbs. Intially yes but then it gets worse again (after like 3 days and I gain weight quickly and I'm hungry all the time... Which is why I decided to go back to bulletproof without intermittent fasting (that often) and I do not pay attention to the 30g carbs limit in order to stay in ketosis. I do have as much fruit or starches as I want in the evening or before I workout which still isn't that much and i have protein after training. It's low carb but not very low. And since I do BBS HIIT I guess I have to do 2 refeeds a week or so... not sure yet. However my doc gave me an article which says it's more important when to eat and not what to eat. It also says carbs are still bad. Instead one should have a protein snack first thing in the morning... Essential aminos and essential fatty acids are very important. However if you exercise you need more carbs which makes sense if you read the BBS book.


     


    And of course stress is the biggest problem of all...


    May you be well, may you be happy, may you be healthy, may you be loved.

    How much to eat:
    advanced | How to train: bulletproof training | HRV: HRV FOR TRAINING HRV BASICS What Affects HRV | Brain  & Memory dual n back training advanced training

     

     



  •  


    hi izabela, are you 'doing' low carb...? if you are, i've just seen a new post over at chris kresser site called, Is a Low-Carb Diet Ruining Your Health?


    Definitely worth a read if you are doing low carb & not feeling the best.


    The article covers quite a bit of ground, and links to a number of other articles.


    Make sure you read the comments as well.


     


    good luck


     




     


    From the article:



     


     


    The main hormone that gets dysregulated in adrenal fatigue is cortisol, and cortisol has been shown to increase on a low carb diet

     


    I feel like this is addressing that initial stage of adrenal fatigue, I actually need my cortisol to increase as I'm in the later stages where I barely have any these days.


     


    To apply it to me, in the comments it goes on to say:


     



     


    If you’re already in the stage of adrenal fatigue where cortisol is chronically low, a low carb diet won’t help raise the cortisol. The problem is that the adrenal glands aren’t producing adequate amounts of it anymore regardless of the stimulus.


     


    Anything that causes constant high cortisol output (inadequate calorie/carb intake, overtraining, emotional stress, job stress, etc.) can put a person at risk for developing an issue with LOW cortisol when the adrenal glands can’t keep up with the demands anymore.


    Make sense?


    Here’s some more info about the condition itself:http://www.drlam.com/articles/adrenalexhaustion.asp


    I’d probably do a moderate carb approach (20-30% of calories) since in treating adrenal fatigue we’re trying to minimize the amount of stress from all sources, and VLC diets can be a source of stress for some people. Starchy vegetables and some fruits are ideal, possibly white rice as well as a component of a protein and fat containing meal. Keeping blood sugar stable is key!



     


    But once again, it doesn't really offer help in treating the later stages, only discusses trying to prevent a person from getting there. Too late for me.


     


    My diet is fats, protein, greens and green veg in the day and carbs are added at night. I am all too familiar with the hypoglycemic shakes and I find that this split of carbs in the day has got rid of my blood sugar level issues in the day, but I do wake during sleep which could be related to dropping levels in the night. Perhaps eating carbs at night is causing a drop in night and I wake??? I don't know.. maybe I should try eating carbs in the morning.. maybe I'm like a type 2 diabetic these days?

    "Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning."



  • I find it very interesting that it's being said that wow low carb is bad. It can be bad (as described in the article by CK) but I don't feel better on a more carbs. Intially yes but then it gets worse again (after like 3 days and I gain weight quickly and I'm hungry all the time... 




     


    My problem is the fat gain and I've basically have given up. There is nothing I can do that will reverse what it is going on with diet, except for possibly not eating at all which is hardly a solution. I have heard of eating protein in the first hour of waking. That's what I'm trying now, but doubt there will be an improvement... abdominal fat continues to increase daily... I have full thyroid and hormone tests coming up in just under 2 weeks.. perhaps that will shed some light on the extent of the imbalance.. 

    "Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning."

  • DManDMan Master of Arts ✭✭✭


    My problem is the fat gain and I've basically have given up. There is nothing I can do that will reverse what it is going on with diet, except for possibly not eating at all which is hardly a solution. I have heard of eating protein in the first hour of waking. That's what I'm trying now, but doubt there will be an improvement... abdominal fat continues to increase daily... I have full thyroid and hormone tests coming up in just under 2 weeks.. perhaps that will shed some light on the extent of the imbalance.. 




     


    From your profile pic I say you look beautiful and body fat should not be the biggest problem for you at this moment. :)


     


    However I do understand. I lost 90 pounds over the years and I don't want to gain that back. But I realized that I don't neet to do intermittend fasting or working out ever other day or what not. What I do though is I try to eat whole foods and I try to not use anything or just very little of concentrated sweeteners and and fats. So Eat the whole coconut/or make milk out of it and not just the fat.... eat some fruit or starch but do not add extra honey or sugars.... The actual imbalance probably comes from the chemistry in your brain... you probably have too much or too little of some neurotransmitters. Your body can fix it and you can help it. I have a list supplements in German from my doctor but you can take a look at it and most should be easy to translate. Relax, do some recreational activities throughout the days and solve your problems. I hope your doctors will help you with it.

    May you be well, may you be happy, may you be healthy, may you be loved.

    How much to eat:
    advanced | How to train: bulletproof training | HRV: HRV FOR TRAINING HRV BASICS What Affects HRV | Brain  & Memory dual n back training advanced training

     

     



  • For stress and cortisol levels, you'll want all the B vitamins but especially B5. Thorne makes a good supplement I think they call Stress B Complex, which has a lot of the B vitamins plus extra B5.


     


    Take Vitamin C as well as Magnesium if you're not already. Most people prefer glycinate for the form of magnesium. Others love Natural Calm magnesium, which is a powder, I believe, that you mix into liquid (I forget what form it is). I'd take zinc as well.


     


    Himalayan pink salt taken every morning when you first wake up will help. Start slow. Too much and you'll spend a lot of time in the bathroom with an upset stomach.


     


    I would normally recommend adaptogenic herbs, but others on here will disagree as they are stimulatory and people respond differently, especially with adrenal issues. Having said that, I've heard good things about using a high quality Reishi supplement for helping to elevate cortisol levels. If you take this, I'd start with small doses and work my way up and see how you feel.


     


    You may be better off trying the other supplements first, see how they help and only later testing any adaptogenic herbs.


     


    Make any and all lifestyle changes that you can that will reduce your stress levels. You don't want to follow the Bulletproof diet with adrenal issues. Eat plenty of carbs every day. Sweet potatoes are good. White rice is lower down the list, but it's one I'd eat. Try and stay with the good carbs, but make sure you do get carbs in you daily. Maybe 150 grams a day.


     


    If you can get one, buy an EmWave and use it to manage stress and more easily handle what comes your way at times.


     


    Forgive. It's far more powerful than many realize. At the very least, you're doing it for yourself and not to let anyone else "off the hook" so to speak. Do forgive, though, and let go of any emotional hurt as much as you can.


     


    I'd add in a high quality fish oil or cod liver oil too (taken with butter oil, like Green Pastures fermented cod liver oil/butter oil blend capsules or gel) or either take with a meal where you have some Kerrygold or other grass fed butter. The fish oil or cod liver oil can often help with stress and help bring hormone levels into a healthy range.


     


    Also, high stress can cause low stomach acid, and you may not be absorbing what you're eating or the supplements you're taking very well. So a HCL supplement can help. I've used Now Foods Betaine HCL before with good success.


     


    Don't exercise heavy with adrenal fatigue. If you want body composition results, focus on your diet for now and eating better, and just get out and walk or do light exercise until your adrenals heal.


     


    And while walking, get out in the sunshine and walk barefoot. Well, walk barefoot any time (in the cool of the day or whenever) and get earthing or grounding benefits. It can be a big stress reliever and has other benefits as well.


     


    Oh, and it's free, which is always a bonus :)




    Okay, lucky last.. :)


     


    B Complex is my order list. I have lypo spheric vit c. I'm trying to work out magnesium as different types work for different people. I have a liquid zinc.


     


    How much salt is a little and how much is too much? got the fermented cod liver oil with butter oil..


     


    Adaptogenic herbs from naturopath tried recently. Felt no better, perhaps a little worse. I'm current off all supplements because I have blood tests coming up and we are looking for cleaner results in terms of how my body does on its own with no help. Not that anything really helps.


     


    Diet.. not too sure what to do about it. I eat carbs in the evening. No help with sleep. Has helped with weird skin rash though. It gets better if I eat carbs and worsens if I miss a night. I wouldn't really call it a rash anymore since its faded so much is barely there, that been my only positive progress in the last few months.


     


    HCL, betaine and glutamine and I have serious issues. HCL brings on all the symptoms that it is meant to fix in people with low acid. Betaine brings on inflammation, particularly in joints and glutamine makes me wonder if I should go to the ER after taking it because it brings on weird internal pain. Have no idea why I respond like this...


     


    The thing is I don't feel stressed. My partner got promoted and I have been sitting on my butt relaxing at home for a year now with this (i did only weigh 38kg last year at one point so I physically was not capable of working). Once I gained weight and my cycle returned back in June of this year, I have had this horrible extensive fat gain. Its as though since my hormones turned back on all these new problems have started. I've come a long way but just as we thought i was getting better and gaining weight its now gone downhill in the opposite direction.


     


    initial weight loss explanation... no idea. its like almost 2 years ago my body wanted to turn off. i lost weight, couldn't digest food, had countless secondary food allergies, multiple skin conditions, walked with a limp due to joint pain, more pain in hands and feet. jaundice, kidney stones, stopped sweating. 60 minutes at 60 degrees in infrared sauna.. nothing.. at least my feet warmed up though.. worked on fixing that and now i have all this..

    "Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning."

  • RekaReka ✭✭✭
    edited August 2014

    Don't worry about the weight, rather concentrate on achieving some sort of hormonal balance first.


     


    Based on what you wrote I guess that you had long term problems so you have to give yourself time to heal. It won't get better from one day to another so don't get desperate if things improve slowly at first. I am sure that you will get better on the long run though. Just be patient and if something makes you feel healthier and improves your results, keep doing it.


     


    I know that fat gain disturbs you, it's completely understandable. But you will get to the point when you will be able to battle that fat. Although I agree with DMan that based on your profile pic you look great! If you keep getting stronger and more muscular that's the way to go! At 61 kg I doubt you should lose.


    It doesn't get easier... It's you who gets better.

     

    Is your social worker in that horse?

     

    Success has a price, not a secret.



  • Don't worry about the weight, rather concentrate on achieving some sort of hormonal balance first.


     


    Based on what you wrote I guess that you had long term problems so you have to give yourself time to heal. It won't get better from one day to another so don't get desperate if things improve slowly at first. I am sure that you will get better on the long run though. Just be patient and if something makes you feel healthier and improves your results, keep doing it.


     


    I know that fat gain disturbs you, it's completely understandable. But you will get to the point when you will be able to battle that fat. Although I agree with DMan that based on your profile pic you look great!




     


    Thank-you both :) 


     


    I think im lucky to have good genes because someone of my severe symptoms should not look like this or appear to look this young :P


     


     


    The fact that the fat is heavily around my abdomen does make me worried about how bad the hormonal imbalance is. Nothing points to this being a mild issue.. I just have to wait and see but its getting to the point where i need to buy new clothes which is annoying...


     


    I'm staying optimistic.. with each test or treatment i hope the best.. sadly, i get not response.. ah well.. i hate waiting and i have to wait till the 11th for test... 


     


    what I find strange is that I do not feel tired.. I have no idea where my body is pulling energy from.. any ideas? i could go for a run even right now and its almost my bedtime and my cortisol levels are almost nonexistent now...

    "Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning."

  • acupuncture is great for balancing hormones




  • acupuncture is great for balancing hormones




     


    I have tried with 4 practitioners in the last 10 years. The latest one I am current seeing has been the most successful in that my cycle is timed perfectly and each month comes and goes with minimal fuss. 


     


    I started back in June when I just got my cycle back and all these issues started. Perhaps I should go and ask for a refocus now that I know this fat gain is an actual issue/symptom of something.. Back in June I was all 'yay, I'm gaining weight finally' now its like 'oh crap.. it needs to stop, its too much'...


     


    The previous 3 times I tried acupuncture it made only a slight difference and then it was like my body would crash and the symptoms would be 3-5 times worse and I could see the practitioners had no clue why that happened.. mixed levels of success... I'm working with a person that was involved in the design of the Bachelor of Applied Science (Chinese Medicine) here in Melbourne and is also the president of one the national Chinese Medicine bodies in Australia.. I have some faith in this man!


     


    The difference I see with his approach is that less is more.. He is very particular with his placement of needles and the amount he uses from visit to visit.

    "Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning."

  • I'm trying to document how consuming protein in the first hour of waking affects sleep. And one thing I have noticed, that is it difficult to track if you dont write it down, personally for me, and it may affect others, hence I'm reporting...


     


    If I consume protein in the morning on time within that first hour, it doesn't affect my sleep THAT night, but it affects the sleep quality in the upcoming nights..


     


    Simplified example:


     


    DAY 1: Wake Wednesday @ 7am - Consume protein at 7:30am - Correct


     


    Sleep for Wednesday night is bad as it has been for a while


     


     


    DAY 2: Wake Thursday @ 7am - Consume protein at 7:30am - Correct


     


    Sleep for Thursday night is still bad...


     


     


    DAY 3: Wake Friday @ 7am - Forget to consume protein at 9:30am - Too late


     


    Friday nights sleep is good. Effects from Wednesdays protein consumption.


     


     


    Day 4: Wake Saturday @ 7am - Consume protein at 7:30am - Correct


     


    Saturday nights sleep is good with effects from Thursdays correct protein consumption.


     


     


    DAY 5: Wake @ 7am - Consume protein at 7:30am - Correct


     


    Sundays nights sleep is crap and wakeful due to late protein consumption on Friday. I'm cranky this morning!


     


     


    This is something that I have noticed.. Its really been only the first few days of sleep improvement but I want to work out if there is a pattern. I follow the work of John Kiefer who promotes that what you eat that day influences you the NEXT day not so much the day you are eating it and there seems to be truth in it.


     


    I buggered it up a few days ago and I paid for it last night where I woke up 3 times again, leaving me groggy and tired this morning and I buggered it up again because I was out of it and tired and had problems getting out of bed.. HOWEVER, I got it right on Saturday, so I'm expecting to sleep well tonight with the effects of that.. 


     


    I can only experiment and see, but I wanted to share it with everyone because sometimes I feel like we expect immediate results and we are quick to dismiss sometimes as not working, when in fact it may just take some time before it effect hits us and affects our bodies to show results.

    "Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning."

  • GarrettGarrett
    edited August 2014
    What type of exercise are you doing these days? I found that BP didn't get me 'ripped' if I did no exercise whilst eating high fat. I often felt kinda.. jiggly and not particularly amazing, strength & bodyfat-wise. Maybe some yoga or PiYo would be good for overall body strengthening, (along with squats, which would still be gentle on your body, and not taxing on your adrenals. Squats are pretty much -the- body strengthening exercise, and both yoga and PiYo are great for full body strength & core strengthening.


    As for the salt in the morning.. 1/4th tsp in water is a pretty good place to start.


    Your body does want movement, but likely not highly stressful movement :-) Ketosis does cause higher cortisol levels, and elevated cortisol does create belly fat. The body accumulating belly fat in times of elevated stress/cortisol is a survival function that our bodies use in situations where it feels it's in danger, and wants to protect vital organs (which are all around your midsection).


    Also thinking BCAA's before and after exercise might be helpful, but I don't know if they have the same cortisol reducing effect on women as they do on men. Katolus or Reka?
  • I could be talking out of my ass and this may not be helpful to anybody, but I swear by taking DHEA (usually 200mg in the AM) and I feel way more confident and secure and masculine.  I've never taken testosterone or HGH (probably because I could never afford to in the past) so I just take this stuff by Natrol that I got from Amazon and it at least feels to me like this is what it might feel like to be on some kind of steroid.  I knew I was deficient in a lot of stuff due to poor diet and sedentary lifestyle with no exercise but even then, high doses of this make me feel powerful.


  • RekaReka ✭✭✭


    What type of exercise are you doing these days? I found that BP didn't get me 'ripped' if I did no exercise whilst eating high fat. I often felt kinda.. jiggly and not particularly amazing, strength & bodyfat-wise. Maybe some yoga or PiYo would be good for overall body strengthening, (along with squats, which would still be gentle on your body, and not taxing on your adrenals. Squats are pretty much -the- body strengthening exercise, and both yoga and PiYo are great for full body strength & core strengthening.


    As for the salt in the morning.. 1/4th tsp in water is a pretty good place to start.


    Your body does want movement, but likely not highly stressful movement :smile: Ketosis does cause higher cortisol levels, and elevated cortisol does create belly fat. The body accumulating belly fat in times of elevated stress/cortisol is a survival function that our bodies use in situations where it feels it's in danger, and wants to protect vital organs (which are all around your midsection).


    Also thinking BCAA's before and after exercise might be helpful, but I don't know if they have the same cortisol reducing effect on women as they do on men. Katolus or Reka?




     


    Wow, thanks, Garrett! But I don't have experience with BCAA's, sorry.


     


    Though I second your question: what exercise do you do, Izabela?


     


    Have you tried taking DHEA?

    It doesn't get easier... It's you who gets better.

     

    Is your social worker in that horse?

     

    Success has a price, not a secret.

  • Just a brief follow-up on my post - Our bodies are designed to move ;) Even walking is a fantastic thing to do! 10,000 steps per day is what's recommended, but any extra movement is better than none :) Your body will thank you. Very very very much.


  • NickatNickat
    edited September 2014

    Glad to hear that you’re having the protein in the morning. You might think about getting Dave’s upgraded collagen. Just one tablespoon would be enough and there is 56 servings in one packet. Have a feeling that will help you for sure. Nothing wrong with other forms though so don’t worry. Just keep everything you eat on the green zone of the BP infographic chart.


     


    Keep eating the good carbs in the form of sweet potato and white rice etc….don’t stop that even if you think you should. You say your 61kg and 5’7’’ which isn’t that bad really although you have probably reached some sort of threshold with weight? Although BMI is mostly rubbish do a quick calculation and see what that is for you. BMI of 23 or just above seems to me the norm for most women of 30-ish and above.


     


    Your body shape is something that can be expressed better but remember that you’ll not be able to change that to look like that body you want if it’s not the same shape. Keep it real.


     


    Waking up at night might be something to do with your blood sugars and cortisol certainly plays into that fact.


    If you like try a tbsp of raw honey at night just before bed and far away from your meal that evening. Maybe even try the collagen as an alternative if you get it but don’t bother to have that in the morning as well if you do. Keep eating a little food protein for breakfast.


     


    The B vits are a great idea for stress. Go for it. Don’t bother with the adaptogen herbs just yet.


    The salt first thing before getting out of bed is excellent advice.


     


    Your going to get thyroid tests back soon and make sure T3 is on it. It could be low.


     


    Your hormone levels really need to be checked and tested. Lastly read about serotonin, depletion, learn of estrogen that controls serotonin too.


     


    Sorry that was a long post and am sure others can help with pointing you to articles if need be.


    You’re doing a great job researching hormones already. Keep at it.




  • Wow, thanks, Garrett! But I don't have experience with BCAA's, sorry.


     


    Though I second your question: what exercise do you do, Izabela?


     


    Have you tried taking DHEA?




     


    Hi hi... wasn't online much the last day or so... but I'm here to answer all the questions now.


     


    The problem with me is that I am gaining a lot of fat in the midsection, I can see it physically and my tanita scale also shows an increase for fat in the trunk area.. I know its not 100% accurate but I try to only pay attention to numbers moving up or down not so much what the numbers actually are.


     


    High cortisol causes belly fat, but I have low cortisol and am still gaining belly fat.. so that makes me a bit of a weird case I guess..


     


    I try not to do much exercise other than natural movement as not to stress my body. If i was to do some, it would be deadlifts, squats, barbell squats.. i have to look this up because i don't know my exercise names... i think its a clean and press.. i like the barbell, what can i say... I don't do pure cardio, my choice would be to do all weights with Tabata, once, twice or three times over.. 12 mins max of exercise..  I'm a walker though. I'm the sort of person that doesn't need to park right near the entrance and I always walk up escalators or take the stairs rather than a lift. I don't mind the extra walking. I play actively with nieces and nephews unlike all the other adults and I don't watch any tv. I am that adult that goes on the swings in the park with the kids. The older I get, the younger I seem to feel despite being well into my 30s now.


     


    My test results would indicate that I am at stage C of adrenal exhaustion, however, I never feel tired.. I feel pumped, like I could go for a 5km run (but I wont). It doesn't make sense and treatment for adrenal exhaustion doesn't seem to have any positive effects on me.


     


    Muscle wise, I am pretty toned if you look beyond the layer of fat my body has decided to store. I don't feel like my body is eating away at the muscle..  I have a photo from just before all my hormones freaked out and changed and the fat storage started to happened back in June..


     


    This is me on the 21st of May. It was the first time I put on gym clothes in over a year. I had not exercised at all during that time as I was trying to get my weight up from where it fell to a tiny 38kg with no explanation. I lost almost all my fat, down to 5% but the muscle remained and in fact, grew with no exercise and lot of time lying around in bed. It was really bizarre to see it happening. In this photo I'm around 52kg. Just before my cycle returned along with what now appears to be a big hormonal imbalance.


     


    23ie35x.jpg


     


     


    Dhea I have not tried yet. I do worry about it turning into the wrong type hormone as I have read it happens in some cases. It's not that I have said no and I am open to trying it, its more that I'm waiting to get more comprehensive results mid this month, to see what treatment to go for next. I don't like taking stabs in the dark as sometimes I feel like the incorrect treatment can lead to further problems. I know my dhea is low but I feel like the cause may not be adrenal exhaustion but maybe something else that is causing it to be low or not allowing my body to produce more or have higher levels.


     


    The salt I can do because I have it on hand. I'm trying to consume protein isolate as soon as I wake up which i feel is helping me sleep through the whole night.. what do you think should come first. Salt or protein or can I mix them together?? i can do trial and error but if you have any advice i would rather try that first.


     


    BCAAs give me horrid pins and needles all over my face and hands. It really is painful and it has put me off taking them again.. but once again, we are trying to get my cortisol levels UP and not DOWN. Down is what most people need. I need more, heaps more!!!

    "Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning."

  • dazdaz today is a good day ✭✭✭
    edited September 2014

    fyi,


    getting dhea supplements in Australia (where izabela is located) is not easy. the import of most(?) hormones in to Australia is restricted. this even includes melatonin.


    ie. a few things iherb will not ship to Aus due to import restrictions; dhea, 7-keto, melatonin, kava kava, tongkat ali, pregnenolone, 


    fake it till you make it

  • edited September 2014


    fyi,


    getting dhea supplements in Australia (where izabela is located) is not easy. the import of most(?) hormones in to Australia is restricted. this even includes melatonin.


    ie. a few things iherb will not ship to Aus; dhea, 7-keto, melatonin, kava kava, tongkat ali, pregnenolone, 




     


    Yep that will be the next challenge if I do need dhea. I hear it is more easily available now with a script and technically i do have test results showing I am low.


     


     


    I'm wondering if I could simply have very high estrogen levels since my cycle returned... I have edited my first post and added a symptom summary.


     


    I will tell you about another interesting test result that has been occurring for the last 10 years.


     


    My testosterone is low but my SHBG is so high I look like I have been through menopause two times over. I should get it retested this year... Doctors do not seem to know what SHBG is because insanely high levels are of no concern to them and they are happy my testosterone is very low because I am female... 


     


    Dec 13-June 14 no cycle and my SHBG was within normal range during this time in march 2014 but back in august 2013 when I still had my cycle it was stupidly high. Can't be a coincidence...

    "Learn from yesterday, live for today, hope for tomorrow. The important thing is not to stop questioning."

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