24 hour Adrenal test (saliva) - High cortisol

I have Hashimoto's and take 100mcg T4 and 10mcg T3. Full story is in my first thread.

I did a private adrenal stress test in September this year and I have come across a lot of articles on hypothyroidism and low cortisol but not so much on hypothyroidism and high cortisol.

The results have said the results could be caused by smoking, alcohol, obesity, pregnancy, Cushing's disease and the use of glucocorticoids but:

I don't smoke

I don't drink

I am not overweight - I have a low body mass index

I am not pregnant

Cushing's was ruled out with a short synacthen test

I don't use glucocorticoids

I have heard good things about the adrenal stress test so the results must reflect my adrenal function but I don't understand why the levels are all over the place.

Could anyone advise please?

Sep-15 (private adrenal stress test)

Cortisol sample 1 - 14.81nmol/L (7.45-32.56)

Cortisol sample 2 - 19.31nmol/L (2.76-11.31)

Cortisol sample 3 - 5.21nmol/L (1.38-7.45)

Cortisol sample 4 - 7.61nmol/L (0.83-3.86)

Sum of cortisol - 46.9nmol/L

DHEA sample 1- 0.44nmol/L (0.25-2.22)

DHEA sample 3 0.32nmol/L (0.25-2.22)

DHEA mean - 0.34nmol/L

DHEA : cortisol ratio - 0.035nmol/L (0.015-0.150)

13 Replies

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  • Hello Ellie8,

    Adrenal output is only recognised as a problem by doctors when it reaches either end of the spectrum resulting in Addisons (low cortisol) or Cushings (high cortisol).

    A person could experience an extremely high or low (or even boarder line) cortisol level and the medical profession would fail to recognise it. A normal cortisol rhythm should peak in the morning hours and then steadily decline through the day with the lowest levels at night.

    Cortisol is crucial in all workings of our bodies as well as the absorption of thyroid meds. If your cortisol levels are too high, your body can't rest so can't maintain this level for ever. Your levels will change from highs to eventual lows as your cortisol levels become deplete. Cortisol problems can effect how thyroid meds work and cause hypoglycaemia, and so should be treated.

    Sample two shows the adrenals adaptive response to the demands of the first few hours of the day and your is over range.

    Sample four is taken prior to sleep and indicates the baseline adrenal gland function which should be the lowest of the day. Yours is over range and could interfere with sleeping patterns raising cortisol even further.

    Waking several times during the night can be down to adrenal issues. It is important to stabilise your blood sugar levels from the time you eat dinner to the time you go to bed. A balanced meal of protein, low glycemic carbohydrates and fats is important.

    A bedtime snack can help balance blood sugars throughout the night as can an "adrenal cocktail". ( I haven't tried this but many swear by it. Google "adrenal cocktail".)

    Adrenal function can be improved with optimal levels of Bit B12, Vit D, folate and ferritin and also supplementing a Vit B Complex ,Vit C (with bioflavonoids which helps it to be metabolised ), Vit E, Fish Oil.

    Dr James Wilson advocates adaptogenic herbs that help the body to normalise after times of stress. (use with caution.)

    Liquorice Root (not to be used with high blood pressure)

    Siberian Ginseng Root

    Ashwagandha Root

    Ginkgo Biloba

    There are also Adrenal Glandulars which many find beneficial such as Nutri Adrenal Extra (NAX).

    Some prefer Adrenal Cortex Extracts which don’t contain the adrenaline found in glandulars.

    A good read is "Adrenal Fatigue. The 21st century stress syndrome" by Dr James Wilson.

    Flower

    Thyroid & blood sugar

    chriskresser.com/thyroid-bl...

    Cortisol & Thyroid

    hypothyroidmom.com/cortisol...

    ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

    Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional and this information is not intended to be a substitute for medical guidance from your own doctor. Please check with your personal before applying any of these suggestions.

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  • Hi Flower and thank you.

    I am struggling with supplementing at the moment. I am taking a B12 supplement (1200mcg), vitamin D supplement (6000IU) and struggling with increasing ferritin which is currently 23 (15-150)

    I first tried ferrous fumarate (210mcg) but this upset my stomach when I added vitamin C. I then tried Floradix but the same thing happened when I mixed it with vitamin C/fruit juice. I only took it the once and it went in the bin because of how ill I felt straight after taking it. The doctor has changed the prescription from ferrous fumarate to ferrous sulphate but these are film coated and are harder to dissolve.

    I have thought about taking a different form of iron - ferrous bisglycinate but is this prescribed by the doctors?

    I have tried to increase iron by eating kale and spinach etc. because not only have I had digestive upset with the iron supplement but the doctor keeps changing the labelling on the boxes - when my ferritin was lower I was asked to take it 2 times a day and since then it has been increased to 3 times a day and is slightly higher. 23 (15-150)

  • Ellie,

    Spinach & kale are both thought to be goitrogenic so always eat cooked.

    Goitrogens are substances (whether in drugs, chemicals, or foods) that disrupt the production of thyroid hormones by interfering with iodine uptake in the thyroid gland. This triggers the pituitary to release TSH, which then promotes the growth of thyroid tissue, eventually leading to goitre.

    I noticed you have another post about neck lumps/pains. Perhaps this could be cause for consideration ? ? ..

    I am not the person to ask about iron as do not supplement.

    I trust Helvella has answered your question - otherwise feel free to repost in a new question with something like "ferrous bisglycinate" in the title.

    Flower

    drknews.com/goiter-goitroge...

    ………………………………………………………………………………………………………

    Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional and this information is not intended to be a substitute for medical guidance from your own doctor. Please check with your personal before applying any of these suggestions.

    …………………………………………………………………………………………………………

  • Hi Flower. Oops, I have eaten the kale and spinach raw, they were included in a pre-packed salad...and I have eaten a lot of this.

    The doctor and endo are aware I have a goitre and the problems I have with it. They say there are no nodules and they have not investigated things any further.

  • Ellie,

    I used to have loads of raw spinach in smoothies but I have Hashi too so stopped all raw greens apart from a little salad. Also detoxifies such as chlorella and spirulina contain iodine which stimulates the thyroid gland so best avoided.

    Flower

  • I think I have eaten things that have spirulina in them. Thanks for the info. :)

  • Sorry, I have been told to raise folate but all I can find are tablets/pills. I have difficulty swallowing tablets because of my goitre so tablets/pills are not an option for me at the moment.

    Serum folate - 5.1ug/mL (4.6-18.7)

  • Ellie8,

    There are at least two makes of folic acid oral solution, potentially available on prescription. There are also liquid folic acid and methylfolate supplements available from on-line suppliers.

  • Hi Helvella, thank you for your answer. As long as it's affordable I'll buy it.

  • Having zero experience of the products, I don't want to point you at any specific one - but easy to search for within, for example, Amazon.

  • Will do - thanks.

  • Flower you ROCK!!!! :-) :-)

  • Thank you Dante.

    Flo

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