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herbs for adrenal support??

Discussion in 'Adrenal Dysfunction' started by heapsreal, Feb 10, 2011.

  1. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    Hi,
    Ok this is where im at, i have managed to get my viral load down, i still have sleep problems and residuel fatigue and my exercise tolerance isnt anything flash. Now hormone testing shows that my dhea levels are below range and my cortisol levels are low normal, this was a morning blood test so i assume cortisol probably should have been alot higher, so i have good evidence of adrenal fatigue. Now i have tried using adrenal hormones ie dhea and pregnenolone but the good effects arent long lasting and then insomnia, agitation etc appear after a few days, i have played around with the doses to see if i can find something tolerable but cant seem to manage this.

    What i would like to know is if theres others out there who have used herbals for adrenal fatigue eg licorice, siberian ginseng, adrenal extracts, high dose vitamin b5 etc and have not only felt better but have measurable improvement in adrenal hormone blood tests.

    SHaring your experiences is muchly appreciated,
    cheers!!!
     
  2. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    just bumping this one up. i also just mentioned in another thread if any men have used progesterone for adrenal fatigue as it can help with cortisol levels and supposedly has a calming effect.

    cheers!!!
     
  3. August59

    August59 Daughters High School Graduation

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  4. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    Thanks 59, just gets abit frustrating with the ups and downs and then the trial error method of treatments, but yes i feel im heading down the right track just a bugger when the preg gave me side effects. When i see my doc next i will talk to him about hydrocortisone and progesterone as well. I will try the preg cream again at maybe 10mg and see what happens, maybe being transdermal the preg levels just built up to high.

    cheers!!!
     
  5. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    Found this interesting about pregnenolone, seems my reaction is common in people with bad adrenal fatigue.
    Others, however, may find pregnenolone worsen existing fatigue and may even trigger adrenal crashes. Such paradoxical reactions are common. The more advanced the adrenal weakness, the more likely such experiences are common.

    Part of the reason can be explained by pregnenolone's unusual response curve. Many studies have found a U-shaped distribution in the therapeutic response to pregnenolone therapy. The U-shaped distribution describes a benefit associated with low dose pregnenolone, a loss of effect with increasing dose of pregnenolone, and a second peak of benefit with higher doses of the steroid. It is unknown what dosage range is represented in either part of the U-shaped curve for humans and whether or not this curve is altered by disease.

    The cells of the adrenal glands, as well as the central nervous system, synthesize pregnenolone. In Adrenal Fatigue, pregnenolone level usually stays high in early stages, but tends to be low as adrenal weakness progresses due to a phenomena known as “pregnenolone steal” as the pregnenolone level drops because the body bypasses pregnenolone production in favor of producing more down-stream hormones such as DHEA and cortisol.

    Taking pregnenolone for adrenal fatigue can therefore be challenging for multiple reasons as paradoxical reaction is a major concern. In addition, one can take what appears to be an adequate dosage but will not benefit from this if the body is shunting it towards cortisol production. On the other hand, overdose is possible if too much is taken over time.

    The normal starting dose is 15 mg, increasing up to 100 mg for men or women. Pregnenolone should be derived from a pharmacologically pure product and not a yam-derived "precursor.” Oral pregnenolone pills work well. Sublingual administration is an excellent option by bypassing the initial liver metabolism that occurs after swallowing an oral pill but it tends to be “spiky” and not well tolerated by those who are sensitive or in advanced s adrenal fatigue state.

    Pregnenolone is converted in the body to progesterone and these two hormones have some overlapping similarities. Pregnenolone is also converted into DHEA, which, in turn may convert into androstenedione, testosterone, and estrogens. Pregnenolone supplementation may increase progesterone levels and consequently other hormones in the body (testosterone and estradiol).

    Side effects include:

    Over stimulation and insomnia - low doses can be helpful for sleep when taken in the morning. This is especially prominent in those with advanced adrenal fatigue.

    Irritability, anger or anxiety - low doses can actually ease a person into a relaxed feeling, while higher amounts may lead to irritability. The exact reason for this is not known.

    Acne can occur due to the probable conversion of this hormone into androgens.

    Headaches are possible with high dosages - possible scalp hair loss if used daily for prolonged periods. Pregnenolone converts into DHEA, which in turn converts into testosterone and possibly onto DHT. Pregnenolone can also be converted into progesterone.

    Irregular heart rhythm, heart palpitations, even when the dose is as low as 10 mg. This side effect can be serious in the elderly or in those with heart rhythm disturbances.

    Pregnenolone may cause disturbances in the endocrine system, including changes in the menstrual cycle and problems associated with hormone sensitive diseases, or it may interact with hormone therapy such as oral contraceptives.
    Due to the possible side effects, pregnenolone should be taken under the supervision of a health care professional. Do not rely on blood or saliva tests alone to determine how much pregnenolone should be taken as the clinical correlation is unreliable in Adrenal Fatigue.

    Due to its antagonistic effects on the GABA receptor in the central nervous system, pregnenolone therapy may be contraindicated in some people with a history of seizures. Pregnenolone may inhibit drugs used to increase GABA activity (i.e. Neurontin); these drugs are frequently used in the treatment of epilepsy and depression.
     
  6. Adster

    Adster Senior Member

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    I use adrenal cortex extract from iherb, nutricology brand. They have just changed it to Adrenal Glandular, I have a feeling it's much the same though.
     
  7. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    Today i used pregnenolone again but just used 10mg, it has given me some energy today and mental clarity, its now 3 in the afternoon, im feeling alittle jumpy, but seem to be handling it, im hoping its helping my adrenals to 'rest'. I will try another 10mg dose in a few days and try to slowly increase how many days i use it. Although since i have stopped the preg which i used for about a month i feel better then i did before i used it, so i wonder if the month of using preg gave my adrenals alittle break. I will keep experimenting with this stuff and see my doc in about 8 weeks. I should also get another lymphocyte test result and make sure i keep my viral load down. Hopefully if i can get my adrenals working my immune system will improve and maybe not need av's, also hopefully sleep improves as sleep problems are common with adrenal fatigue as well.

    cheers!!!
     
  8. SaraM

    SaraM Senior Member

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    I was deficient in B5 for years without knowing it. I am sure vitamin C and B5 have helped me a lot. I really cant say if herbs did any thing for me but I take them from time to time anyway. My DHEA (75)and cortisol(10) level are low while Estradiol is hitting the roof. I took 50 mg of pregnenolone for 2 days without any effect. I am going to try a lower dose as you mentioned. I am also going to ask my doc for Arimidex and see if it can help. I think Lugol iodine is helping me with too much estrogen because my breasts tenderness has improved .
     
  9. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    women can used progesterone to help control and lower estrogen and estrogen dominance and can greatly help adrenal fatigue.
     
  10. ukxmrv

    ukxmrv Senior Member

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    Sadly, I didn't find that progesterone (tried injections and suppositories) helped with any ME symptoms incl fatigue

    XMRV+
     
  11. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    i think adrenal fatigue is whats left over after years of chronic infection, sort of a secondary thing that can keep u down, if u still have xmrv i dont think treating adrenals will help until viral load is down.
    I used a small dose, 10mg of prenenolone yesterday and managed that ok and today i didnt use any and still went ok, so i think if i tread lightly with it and slowly build up is whats going to help me.

    cheers!!!
     
  12. Rita

    Rita Senior Member

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    Perhaps this is interesting:
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/2980824
    The relation with cortisol and zinc.

    I have read a lot about adrenal fatigue, mainly the book Adrenal Fatigue from Dr.James Wilson (very interesting)and I dont know if adrenal fatigue is consequence of the virus or the virus is consequence of the previous adrenal fatigue.
    Adrenal fatigue is also an unknow illness, but I think some CFSs can be a adrenal fatigue suffereds
    My cortisol levels are very low but this is not important for any doctor, nor my low linfocites.
    I take sometimes 1/4 pill of hidrocortisone and it helps with energy but not with the gut.

    Latest days I some melatonine and it helped me with energy, but it increases my sugar in blood and I need to stop it.
     
  13. SaraM

    SaraM Senior Member

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    Interesting points regarding Zinc, melatonin and progestrone. I used progestrone for a couple of weeks which was very helpful at the beginning but later stopped working. I am going to give it a try one more time. I was also very deficient in Zinc and absolutely agree with Rita on this point. Recently began taking 1 mg melatonin and I feel I have more energy. Will see if the effect will hold.
     
  14. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    I have been reading from dr lam's website on adrenal fatigue and he talks alot about crashes and recovery. One thing i noticed in reguards to hormones was that pregnenolone and dhea dont need to be used all the time and are good for when in a crash and recovering as these hormones are low. I went with pregnenolone because all the hormones come down stream from pregnenolone which include cortisol and progesterone as well as dhea. He recommends using the other hormones if pregnenolone is boosting the others eg if progesterone isnt coming up with preg he may use progesterone. He doesnt seem keen on the idea of cortisone unless severe adrenal fatigue and only for a few weeks at the beginning of treatment then try and change over to other hormones and nutrients like vit b5 etc.

    Cortisol can definately disrrupt circadian rythm, as alot of us know we sometimes have low cortisol durng the day and higher at night which gives us that tired wired feeling but also having constantly low cortisol can disrupt sleep. Im not sure where i sit with melatonin, i use it as its a good antioxidant and helps me get out of some funky sleep patterns i get in but it doesnt seem to directly help my sleep onset or sleep quality.

    Yes rita i think its a chicken or the egg when it comes to viral onset cfs, the viral onset could cause adrenal fatigue which keeps our immune system down and allows infections to go chronic or adrenal fatigue first which then causes immunodefiencies and then we get all the herpes type viruses. I think its a definate subset of cfs. Having low adrenal hormones and researching down that path has definately opened my eyes abit more. I think many cfsers who had had chronic infections for along time should look into adrenal fatigue as another part of their treatment. I havent been tested for xmrv, but now that i look at my low adrenal hormones and having some improvement with them(although still fine tuning) Im not convinced i have xmrv, but if i get the chance to get tested i will. I have seen dr james Wilson pop up in my research on AF, so will have to look into that book.

    cheers!!!
     
  15. knackers323

    knackers323 Senior Member

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    hi heaps what else do you do to fix your adrenals. eg diet etc?
     
  16. anne_likes_red

    anne_likes_red Senior Member

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    Hey Heaps, not sure how helpful this will be but I'll throw it out there anyway... :D

    I was reading customer reviews for phosphatidyl serine complex (one of Rich's simplified methylation protocol supps) on iherb earlier and I noticed a few people said their doctors had recommended this for adrenal support. At least one person mentioned it had helped with sleep, by moderating cortisol I think.

    Best,
    Anne.
     
  17. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    Hi anne, yes im looking into phos serine to lower high cortisol at night. Looking back at a saliva test i did last year my cortisol is low in the am and pm seems to be in range but thats a 6pm reading so maybe doesnt drop any lower, so phos serine might be worth a try, i have ordered some kava extract as well to hopefully lower afternoon and night cortisol levels. The last 2 nights have been crappy sleeping, last night was my knockout pill seroquel and it was a very irritable type of sleep.

    Hi knackers, diet wise i follow a low carb diet and been use some pregnenolone which i have backed off quite abit as it isnt really helping me with sleep if i use it too much, but will be adding vit b5, adrenal extracts, and try the kava at night and will order some phos serine as well for night. Im using extra vit c and b vits. plus i am using siberian ginseng, astragalus as well.

    cheers!!!
     
  18. Misfit Toy

    Misfit Toy Senior Member

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    Heapsreal, I was on pregnenolone and ACE at the same time and man did I take a downward spiral. I was so exhausted on both and it took me 6 months to get any better after stopping it. Pregnenolone is not loved by all who treat the adrenals. Many, even at the Clymer clinic feel that it can be converted into too many things and depending on your liver and body, you may not convert it into what you need.

    L-serine is good for those that have high cortisol. It can bring it down and cause you to rest.
     
  19. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    Yes, i think pregnenolone can go anywhere ie to any hormone which might make it unpredictable. When you look at diagrams of hormone pathways, i dont think its that black and white. Blood tests while on preg showed it increased my testosterone levels quite abit but only mildly of my dhea which i wanted it to increase to a good level, not sure of cortisol levels, still need to check this one when i see my doc next but i would say it elevated it and kept it high constantly??? I have ordered some phos serine and will try it at night to keep night time cortisol levels down and hopefully improve sleep, although i have read it can be stimulating. Have got my doc to send out a saliva dhea/cortisol test kit so i can test the levels throughout the day, so will be interested to see how that go's too. I might start another thread on phosphatidyl serine.

    cheers!!!
     
  20. heapsreal

    heapsreal iherb 10% discount code OPA989,

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    Its been a few days since i last used a very low dose of pregnenolone, i find it not really energizing now but more anxiety increasing, but since i havent used it i have had a couple of good nights sleep in a row and feel alot better not on pregnenolone, i feel alot calmer and clear headed. So i think it kick started my adrenals, although i dont think they are great but i think its just going take time to let them recover. I will keep up with the natural adrenal supps, hopefully get my order of b5, phos serine and adrenal extract next week but will hold off on the adrenal extract for awhile. I think removing the main stress (ebv/cmv) should help my adrenals to improve. Im looking forward to trying the phosphatidyl serine to help sleep.

    cheers!!!
     

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