Adrenal fatigue or Hypothyroidism

Adrenal fatigue or low thyroid

Is my exhaustion (low metabolic energy) due to weak adrenal or thyroid function?

You feel exhausted, have trouble sleeping, have weight problems, have trouble remembering things and concentrating, it is hard for you to keep the body warmth? In many cases, the diagnosis for such symptoms is a low metabolic energy, which in many cases is caused by either an adrenal fatigue or a thyroid dysfunction. These are two quite different problems. The adrenal glands help us manage stress and maintain stability, while the thyroid stimulates energy production. There are unique signs and symptoms that correlate with a malfunction of the two. The metabolic table below gives valuable information on whether the thyroid gland function and / or the adrenal fatigue is responsible for the symptoms.

The patterns of the adrenal and thyroid recognize

The symptoms of adrenal gland function and thyroid function are contradictory. Therefore, in a low adrenal function, we see weight loss, pallor, a hyperreactive system, etc. In contrast, we see a weak thyroid function weight gain, a reddish facial color, a hyporeactive system, etc. These contrasting patterns have strong implications for diagnosis and treatment of persons with low metabolic energy, because it allows us to treat the root of the problem, either the adrenal or the thyroid function. The general exception to this pattern is cases where the symptoms are caused by a generally low metabolic rate, whether caused by a malfunction of the thyroid or adrenal glands. For example, both may have weak thyroid function and a weak adrenal function, hair loss, or poor memory and lack of concentration. Examples of these symptoms of generally lower metabolic energy can be found in the symptoms table below. (There are some interesting observations: Women are much more frequently affected by low metabolic energy due to adrenal or thyroid function disorders: the ratio is about eight to one olive-colored skin tend to have weak adrenal or thyroid glands.)

Signs and symptoms of adrenal fatigue and hypothyroidism (low thyroid)

Legend: - normally not present, + possibly present, ++ often present, +++ always or almost always present
Signs and symptoms Adrenal fatigue Mixed Form (1) Low Thyroid
body shape mild : weight gain moderate : unable to lose weight strong : thin, no weight gain possible It is easy to lose weight, first on abdomen / hip, very difficult to remove Weight gain, generally and everywhere, extremely difficult to lose
face shape Eyes and cheeks sunk in heavy form normal Full, swollen around the eyes
eyebrows tingly full Normal to sparse outer 1/3 - 1/2 very sparse
Tissues around the eyes Indescribable appearance, possibly dark eye rings Normal or some "cushion" under the eyes Puffy around the eyes, often cushions under the eyes
Facial Color (2) Tentatively pale, especially around the mouth. In the case of dark skin, the mouth, forehead and sides of the face darken Pallor around the mouth (easier to recognize with light skin) reddish or rosy complexion, also around the mouth
hair Thin and brittle. Can become straw-like or smoother. Dry. Fits easily. Sparsely on forearms or lower legs. Tendency to become more sparse Tendency coarse, sparse, can get waves or lure (rarely) or change the color. When severe enough hair loss is common
nails Thin, brittle break easily can be thick
Skin Texture Dry, thin, fingerprints often "smooth" or flat / shiny and may have longitudinal folds over the fingertips (potential cause is low collagen level) possibly thin, dry, damaged easily, bad healing can be oily or moist. Poor healing, event easily damage. Skin thickness is normal (not thin) .Typical-wise good fingerprints
Fluids / secretions Dry skin, little secretion. Can not hold water. mixed, eg dry body and oily face Guute secretion. Skin can be oily. Tenedence liquid hold.
Connective tissue (ligaments, tendons, skin, hair and nails) weak bands or stretchy (eg, flat feet). Joint stretching / sprains are frequent. Mixed low flexibility
Pigement distribution Vitiligo (white spots or spots) in late phases. Can easily tan. In dark skin, darker on the forehead, on the side of the face, around mouth and chin / jaw. Mild version of vitiligo (white spots or small white dots on arms and / or legs) and dark spots on dark skin. In pure thyroid gland (hypothyroidism) vitiligo and excessive pigmentation very rare
Light sensitivity or night-blindness ++ + -
Retraining images (eg in the case of a flash or bright light that precedes, longer than others) ++ + +/-
Typical pain Headache, migraine, muscle, carpal tunnel Muscles, carpal tunnel Sometimes joints, muscles, feet / lower limbs
Temperature pattern (see metabolic-temperature curve) Temperature chameleon (hot when it is warm, cold when it is cool). Poor temperature regulation. Tends to low body temperature by 36.5 ° C or lower. Fluctuating pattern. However, a fluctuating pattern, typically 36.5 ° C, may be lower Stable, non-fluctuating pattern, average can be from low 34 ° C to slightly below 37 ° C
Cold tolerance +++ ++ +/-
Heat intolerance + ++ +++
Cold hands / feet +++ Frequently -
Warm hands / feet (despite low body temperature) - Occasionally ++
sweat Can be reinforced in early stages. Little in late phases. can appear normal Normal to elevated, rather oily than wet
General Reactivity: Emotional, physiological, immune, etc. Hyper-reactive (excessive) moderate Hypo-reactive (underactive)
Immune function Tendency to overreact leads to allergies, sensitivities, autoimmune problems Mixed Tendency to subdue leads to infections (sinus, bladder, intestine, skin, etc.)
Contact with EBV or mononucleosis +++ ++ +/-
Sensitivities to medication, food supplements, etc. Can only tolerate small doses ++ + -
Intuitive (3) . Takes feelings of other people (eg in shopping centers, parties). ++ + +/-
Personality, tendency: humor +/- + ++
Personality, tendency: initiality ++ / +++ ++ +/-
Depression (10) + ++ +++
Anxiety (11) , panic attacks, worries, anxiety, insecurity, destructive anxiety (any combination). "I thought I was going to die ..." +++ ++ +
Tendency to Forced Interference (11) (12) ++ + +/-
easily frightening ++ + -
Tolerance towards change / stress Bad Bad / moderate to good moderate
sleep rhythm Tendency to (one or more): insomnia, light sleep, waking between 2-4 o'clock, unhappy sleep Can have sleep disturbances or not Tendencies to (one or more): drowsiness, narcolepsy, sleep apnea, unexpected sleep
Spiritual abilities Poor: focus, clarity, concentration, short-term memory. 'Brain fog' (Brain fog) Poor focus, clarity, concentration, short-term memory. Poor focus, clarity, concentration, short-term memory. 'Slow Thinking'
Energy state Complaints about fatigue or exhaustion, "confused and tired" (wired and tired), low motivation Variable energy that can be good or low. Complaints to be tired, sluggish, low motivation
Tolerance versus training (sports) Causes fatigue. When body temperature falls sharply after training Mixed Can not train much. Tired quickly.
Edema (swelling) - +/- +
Breastfeeding is difficult or causes discomfort. Running is better. + +/- -
Fibromyalgia / chronic fatigue / fatigue ++ ++ ++
Orthostatic hypotonia (drowsiness when getting up from lying or sometimes even sitting) ++ +/- -
blood pressure Tends to be low, eg from 80/50 at the lower end to 110/70 at the upper end Can be low, normal or high It ranges from normal to very high and is difficult to adjust by drugs
Heart palpitations ("as if my heart jumps from the chest"). ++ +/- -
Mitral valve, noise or prolapse (4) ++ + +/-
Nutritional habits Tend to be a vegetarian or avoid certain foods Tend to fewer food restrictions than the pure adrenal type Tends to eat it all
digestion It often has trouble digesting meat or other proteins. Some food problematic (5) Can be normal, or trouble with some foods Bad, but they often think they would be good.
Intestinal function Tends to be irritated or hyperactive, passage may be too fast (food leaves the stomach too quickly and causes bad enzymatic digestion) Bad / delighted Tends to constipation, hypoactive, slow passage (food leaves the stomach too slow) and poor mechanical digestion.
malabsorption +++ ++ +
Cravings / addictions Sweets, carbohydrates, salt (or any cobination), liquorice Gemsicht fats
Blood glucose (hypoglycaemia = low blood glucose hyperglycemia = increased blood glucose) Tendency to hypoglycemia. Can take many small meals. Can range from mild hypoglycaemia to hyperglycemia Normal to hyperglycemia
Problems with menstruation and / or fertility (women) ++ + +/-
Typical findings in blood tests
blood test Adrenal fatigue All Products (1) Thyroid function under
Chem: Total cholesterol (6) Normally low to low normal (eg below 160) Mixed: Can be low, medium or high Normally over 200. Very difficult to reduce.
Chem: HDL (6) (the good cholesterol) Tends to be relatively high Mixed: Can be high, low or medium Tends to be relatively low
Chem: cholesterol / HDL ratio Normally 3.0 or less Can be high, low or medium Normally 3.5 or more
Chem: Serum potassium Tends to high normal value (typically 4.0 or higher)   Tends to be below 4.0
Chem: serum sodium Tends to low normal (typically 140 or less)   Tends to be over 140
Chem: DHEAS Low to low- normal    
blood sugar Tends to be low, eg 60s to 80s Tends to be normal or elevated  
CO2 Tends to be at the bottom (23 or less) (13)    
Chem: Testosterone Tends to be low-normal to low    
CBC: WBC (7) Tends to be low normal (eg, 3.5 to 5) Normal to low normal Often medium-normal or upper end (eg above 7)
CBC: Platelets (7) Tends to low normal Normal to low normal Normal to high normal
CBC: MCV (8) (mean corpuscular volume) Often 93 or higher. Vitamin B12 intake normalizes it regularly. Tends to high to high-normal. Vitamin B12 normalizes it regularly tended to be 90 or less
CBC: RDW (9) (reticulocyte distribution of width) Normal to high-normal Normal to high normal Normal to high normal
blood type usually Type A   often type 0
platelet Usually less than 200 Usually less than 300 Typically more than 300

Interpretation of results

Count as many symptoms in each column apply (adrenal, thyroid, or mixed). This will show us whether the condition comes mainly from a low function of thyroid, adrenal, or a mixture of both. No one has all these symptoms, the more severe the symptoms are, the greater the number of symptoms. The table is a quick and easy way to determine if a low function is present to the adrenal gland, the thyroid, or a mixture of both. Once the adrenal glands and thyroid glands get the support they need, For example the temperature curve to document progress.


  1. During my work with thyroid and adrenal dysfunction, I have become aware that most patients with low body temperature have a mixed form of low thyroid and low adrenal function (also called Wilson's syndrome).
  2. Pale face: a pale color, especially around the mouth. The easiest way to recognize the light-skinned. People with olive skin are much more difficult to recognize. In persons of African descent, there is a tendency to darker pigmentation around the mouth, symmetrical in areas on the face or side of the neck, and usually over the forehead.
  3. Intuition is an interesting quality of an adrenal fatigue when it starts at a young age. The later life in which the adrenal fatigue develops, the less likely a spontaneous intuitive ability develops. People who develop an adrenal fatigue early in their lives are often described as empathic and tell their friends (but not their doctors) about their ability to perceive feelings of others. Supporting the adrenal glands does not weaken this intuition once it is there. People who develop an adrenal fatigue later in their lives (because of high stress, viruses etc.) tend not to report such intuitive abilities. A spiritual orientation is more common among those who develop the adrenal fatigue early. It is less common in those where the adrenal fatigue begins later and those with strong, healthy adrenal. There appears to be a difference in personality (archetype) between those with strong adrenal glands and those with weak adrenal glands.
  4. Problems with the mitral valves seem to occur more frequently in women with adrenal fatigue than in others. The body shape appears narrower, thicker down around where the weight gain when there is it. The tendency to problems with the valves could be linked to the quality of the connective tissue, which sometimes improve when the connective tissue is supported. Whitethorns seem to help. People with pure thyroid function do not appear to be more often affected by valve problems compared to the rest of the population.
  5. Such individuals tend to digest meat badly due to insufficient gastric acidity. Often they think they have too much stomach acid, as they occasionally get heartburn or have heartburn when they take digestion enzymes with stomach acid. The problem is usually not a gastritis or a reflux of gastric acid caused by too much acid, it is rather a problem of insufficient acid production and insufficient stomach protection, due to insufficient gastroprotective secretions. On the other hand, helping to chew or suck liquorice on a certain type may be called the DGL, or by taking some rotulme (slippery elm), or both. Suck or chew about half an hour before a meal on it. It increases the secretion of protective mucous membranes in the stomach. This helps to prevent irritation of the stomach acid.
  6. in an adrenal fatigue, the total cholesterol tends to a low or low-normal value while HDL tends to be high-normal or high. When there is a thyroid gland, the opposite occurs more frequently, with high-normal to high cholesterol and normal-low HDL.
  7. with low metabolic energy through the adrenal glands, WBC (white blood cells are the first line of defense against infections) and blood platelets (they help repair injured blood vessels) are often found with relatively low values ​​compared to the optimum. Typically, the WBC value is less than five and the blood platelets are below 200. It is also important to see the values ​​in relation. If someone has an adrenal fatigue (we expect less than five), but WBC is less than six, we can say that the WBC value is relatively higher (it is higher than we expected). Therefore, we suspect that some white blood cells, WBC (White Blood Cell Count), have either a low thyroid function or an infection (sinuses, a cold, bowel, bladder, etc.) or both. An interesting point: I think it is interesting that in an adrenal fatigue tend to see a lot of fibrinogen (increased coagulation) and little blood platelets. Thus the higher fibrinogen (chemical) and the low blood platelets (cellular) balance each other out. Similar to immunity, the antibodies tend to be high (overactive component) while the white blood cells are rather small. Again, the (high) chemical component and the (low) cellular component balance each other out.
  8. the MCV (Mean Corpuscular Voulme) measures the size of the red blood cells. Their size tends to increase the higher the vitamin B12 deficiency. Individuals with poor digestion or absorption tend to have little vitamin B12, so they tend to have larger blood cells, for example, MCV tends to be at the upper end of normal or high. This is more common in adrenal fatigue, as these individuals eat less meat, tend to digest poorly when they eat it and generally have poor absorption.
  9. RDW measures the distribution or variability of the size of any bloodstream individuals with a stable health tend to have a low variability in cell size. In the case of an unstable or poor state of health, a higher variability of the cell size generally results.
  10. whenever a patient comes with depression, I look for suboptimal thyroid function. This does not mean the same as saying "outside normal values". Optimal is a zone within the normal zone that I have identified as the zone I find in my healthiest patients. If the thyroid function is near the optimum value and the depression persists, I look to support other areas such as the neurotransmitter level as follows:
    • To support serotonin (soothing): Tryptophan or 5-hydroxy-tryptophan (5HTP) as long as the patient does not take SSRI antidepressants (SSRIs can interfere negatively with tryptophan or 5HTP and lead to excessively high serotonin levels). As I usually dosed is where I start with low doses of mornings, noon if necessary, and in the evening to support the sleep. I find it particularly helpful for obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD, Obscene Compulsive Disorder) when the patient is no longer taking prescription drugs such as the SSRI type. A typical dose (slow increase in dose to take care of side effects) could be as follows: morning 50 mg to 100 mg 5HTP, at noon 50 mg to 100 mg 5HTP, for bedtime 200-300 mg.
    • To support dopamine and norepinephrine (stimulants): tyrosine is usually what is most needed. A typical dosage might be 1-2 capsules (500 mg) in the morning one capsules at noon.
  11. I've noticed that most cases of anxiety are caused by the adrenal glands. The typical condition is not bad enough to be detected with standard tests, which are only suitable for detecting the most extreme forms of adrenal fatigue. While a person goes in this direction, the standard blood test will not determine this transition, but the symptoms become clearer with anxiousness, cold hands or cold intolerance, bad and or restful sleep, which list the possible symptoms.
  12. a tendency to obsessive-compulsive disorder may look like a repetition of actions, such as washing hands too often or going back several times, and double or triple checking whether the door is locked or the stove is off. The more the adrenal glands recover and the uncertainty fades, this tendency also becomes less or disappears completely.
  13. low CO2 values ​​are often associated with low production of bicarbonate of the pancreas. This is typically a component of poor digestion, which is observed in adrenal fatigue. What is probably happening is: Adrenal fatigue -> low production of stomach acid -> Gastric contents released from the stomach into the duodenal is not acid enough to trigger the basic (bicarbonate) secretion from the pancreas to neutralize the acid.