Sign-up for free E-BOOK now
Email
Privacy policy: I will not give your details to anyone. You have my word!
to assess and monitor your lifestlye
Click to order supplements and other natural products
Testimonials
"Superb – I have been writing this in my mind for years but never had the nouse to be so erudite."
Dr Charles Lister, Dentist, Private Treatment Centre, Salisbury

Endocrine Gland Disorders

 

 
     
Click here for basic information about the endocrine system
 
The most common disorders of the endocrine glands to affect chronic fatigue syndrome, M.E., fibromyalgia and autoimmune disease sufferers are under-functioning of the adrenal and thyroid glands and these topics are addressed below.
 
The adrenal glands
 
Location
 
The adrenal glands are a pair of small pyramid-shaped endocrine glands that sit on top of the kidneys and are located under the ribs in the back.
 
Function
 
They have several different and important functions, but are primarily responsible for our response to stress. They were designed to respond to short periods of stress and then have a long period of recovery as when we were beset by a rival tribe or a bear. They are very metabolically active and have a high requirement for nutrients. 
 
Structure
 

     

   

Location of adrenal glands

The adrenal glands have an inner core of nervous tissue (known as the medulla) that produces adrenaline and noradrenaline (epinephrine and norepinephrine). The outer rind (or cortex) is endocrine tissue and produces steroid, sex hormones and DHEA.

Click here for basic information about the Endocrine System

The most common disorders of the endocrine glands to affect chronic fatigue syndrome (C.F.S.), myalgic encephelomyelitis (M.E.), fibromyalgia and autoimmune disease sufferers are under-functioning of the adrenal and thyroid glands and these topics are addressed below.

 

The adrenal glands

Location

The adrenal glands are a pair of small pyramid-shaped endocrine glands that sit on top of the kidneys and are located under the ribs in the back.

Function

They have several different and important functions, but are primarily responsible for our response to stress. They were designed to respond to short periods of stress and then have a long period of recovery as when we were beset by a rival tribe or a bear. They are very metabolically active and have a high requirement for nutrients. 

Structure

The adrenal glands have an inner core of nervous tissue (known as the medulla) that produces adrenaline and noradrenaline (epinephrine and norepinephrine). The outer rind (or cortex) is endocrine tissue and produces steroid, sex hormones and DHEA.

 

            Location of adrenal glands

Adrenal gland disorders

If you have any of the following symptoms and especially if they date back to an infection, pregnancy or stressful event - then the chances are high that you have some degree of adrenal fatigue:

  • Diarrhoea, constipation, IBS
  • Pale, translucent skin with dark rings around the eyes
  • Area(s) of excessive bronze pigmentation somewhere on the body
  • Loss of either pubic or underarm hair or hair on the lower legs in men 
  • Muscle weakness leading to back or loin pain, knee or ankle problems
  • Hot and cold sensitivity with cold hands and/or feet
  • Repeated infections or poor response to infections
  • Low blood pressure and/or poorly controlled blood sugar leading to fainting
  • Haemorrhoids or varicose veins
  • Menstrual disturbances, PMS and/or a difficult menopause  
  • Poor pregnancy until the latter part and/or post-natal depression 
  • Poor exercise tolerance 
  • Any inflammatory condition eg: arthritis
  • Allergies – especially asthma
  • Confusion, memory loss, depression and/or anxiety 
  • Chronic fatigue

 

The thyroid gland

The thyroid gland 

Location

The thyroid gland is found at the base of the front of the neck.

Structure

It is a butterfly-shaped gland that spans the windpipe (oesophagus).

Function

The thyroid gland mainly produces inactive thyroxine (sometimes known as T4) which is then thought to be converted into its active form of T3 in the tissues. Thyroid hormones are a kind of growth hormone and govern the metabolism in practically all the body’s tissues and also enhance the effects of other hormones.

Thyroid gland disorders

 

Hyperthyroidism

The thyroid gland can become overactive (hyperthyroidism) and signs include: increased metabolic rate, anxiety, restlessness, hair loss, palpitations and weight loss in spite of a good appetite.

 

Hypothyroidism

However, much more common is an underactive thyroid (hypothyroidism or myxoedema) although sometimes a dysfunctional gland can swing between these two extremes before finally failing.

 

Signs of hypothyroidism

The following are all signs of hypothyroidism either in the present or historically: 

  • Exhaustion, lethargy and weariness, everything is an effort - ‘like walking through treacle’
  • Constipation and/or diarrhoea, irritable bowel syndrome (I.B.S.)
  • Weight gain and puffiness especially ankles, face, hands and eyes
  • Pale, dry, coarse skin – hard, cracked skin on heels and hands, brittle nails
  • Dry, coarse hair or loss of eyebrow, underarm or pubic hair 
  • Feeling cold and not coping with heat
  • Headaches or migraines
  • Muscle and joint stiffness and pain
  • Alcohol intolerance
  • Non-existent libido and loss of sexual responsiveness
  • Breathlessness and palpitations
  • Hearing and balance problems
  • Menstrual problems – periods stopped or heavy and irregular, infertility 
  • Shaking, pins and needles or numbness
  • Slow, clumsy, forgetful, difficulty stringing words together 
  • Insomnia or sleeping heavily and waking exhausted
  • All kinds of psychological symptoms from depression, lack of confidence, anger, irritability, crying easily, mood swings, anxiety and panic attacks to full blown hallucinations, paranoia and suicidal and morbid thoughts.

 

Further resources

For more information about endocrine disorders, self-help tests, their causes and how to rehabilitate under-functioning glands, please refer to chapter 10 and Part 2 of Chronic Fatigue, M.E., and Fibromyalgia: The Natural Recovery Plan. 

You might also be interested in the following: 

Read button

About Fatigue Syndromes

Signs and Symptoms of Fatigue Syndromes

The Role of Toxic Metals in Fatigue Syndromes

Book Review: Adrenal Fatigue

The Parathyroid Glands

Book Review: Your Thyroid and How to Keep it Healthy

Research: Mercury Caused Endocrine Disorders

Listen button

 

Dr James Rone on Thyroid Disorders and Adrenal Fatigue and many other podcasts listed under Fatigue Syndromes & Toxicity in the Audio Hub 

Video button
 
 
 

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Low Thyroid

Hypothyroidism or Chronic Fatigue?

Thyroid's Connection to Fibromyalgia

Nothing Organically Wrong

 

Or for all media use the Search facility at the top of the page

 

Endocrine disorders: Article summary

This article outlines the symptoms of the endocrine gland disorders particularly the thyroid gland disorders (hypothyroidism and hyperthyroidism) and adrenal fatigue especially in relation to fatigue syndromes.

 


  Copy button

Click the icon if you would like to republish this article


To receive a FREE report and the newsletter fill in your email details in the box on the top left.

The Natural Recovery Plan Information sheet. Copyright Alison Adams 2010. All rights reserved
Dr Alison Adams Dentist, Naturopath, Author and Online Health Coach www.thenaturalrecoveryplan.com

Share/Bookmark
 
Home | About FRS | About Alison | The Plan | Supplements | Terms | Privacy | Disclaimer | Contact | Sitemap