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Adrenal Fatigue and Immunity: What’s Throwing You Off?

January 19, 2021
Chronic stress can provoke Adrenal Fatigue and immune system disorders. Treatment of Adrenal Fatigue will insure a healthy immune system.
By: Dr. Andrew Neville


Dr. Andrew Neville


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Why Am I Sick All the Time? 

It’s a haunting question if you’re experiencing another flare up of your autoimmune disorder, asthma, or Epstein-Barr Virus (EBV).  Perhaps your stomach is in riot mode because you unknowingly ingested dairy or a walk in the garden has left you heavily congested. These incidents are symptoms of the common correlation between Adrenal Fatigue and the immune system.

We know that a properly functioning immune system is crucial to our well-being and healthy aging. But you might not know that chronic stress can bring on Adrenal Fatigue and immune system disorders. Research has shown that Adrenal Fatigue and immunity conditions tend to go hand in hand. 

Chronic Immune Issues – There’s Hope!

It seems like everytime you get an autoimmune diagnosis you get one or two more health issues for free. Each one can feel like a life sentence without parole. The following phrases might sound too familiar:  

“My doctor told me my immune issues are genetic.”

“Everyone’s sure Epstein Barr Virus is causing my symptoms.”

“They said I’d have asthma forever.”

“I’m going to suffer from chronic Lyme for the rest of my life.”

“He said chronic pain was something I might just have to live with.”

“I don’t know why I’m suddenly allergic to dairy.”

“She told me candida is at the root of all my health issues.”

These statements are difficult to understand and hardly indicate forward motion. And, these potential diagnoses aren’t helpful if steps to resolve them are ineffective. 

One can experience many different manifestations, but the root cause remains the same: Adrenal Fatigue. Once that is diagnosed and resolved, Adrenal Fatigue and immune system issues can finally be resolved.

Learn what’s really going on with your body and why you’re still experiencing symptoms…despite all your attempts to get better.

Learn what’s really going on with your body and why you’re still experiencing symptoms…despite all your attempts to get better.

Stress Response & Immunity

Everything has the potential to stress us out: our careers, our bills, our fears, even our familial relationships. It’s true stress comes at us from all directions. It can range from the enormous, say bankruptcy, to the more commonplace, getting stuck in traffic. Unfortunately, our bodies aren’t designed to distinguish between the small insults and the life-threatening ones; each one registers as an “Attack!” And, more sensitive people naturally have a lower tolerance for stressful situations. 

These continual stress responses drain the adrenals, leading to Adrenal Fatigue. Adrenal Fatigue then affects the immune system. The endless stream of stress-responses can trigger debilitating immune-related symptoms such as allergies, food sensitivities, leaky gut syndrome, inflammation, chronic pain, and even autoimmune diseases.

Each stressor signals the adrenals to release yet another boost of “fight or flight” hormones. These hormones flood our entire body, although they tend to zero in on our immune system, causing increased antibody production or inflammation. A continuous stress load ultimately drains the adrenal glands, leaving them unable to handle the shifting immune hormones. All of this may lead you to mysterious diagnoses or the lingering question: “Why am I sick all the time?”

Does Adrenal Fatigue Lower Your Immune System?

In searching for a reason why your immune system seems sluggish, a doctor may suggest that a new virus, bacteria, parasite, yeast, or fungus is the cause of your condition. They will then prescribe accordingly. Yet, a one-size-fits-all medication doesn’t get to the root of the issue. It won’t resolve the Adrenal Fatigue and immunity issues.  It’s best to determine a course of action to lower the stress radar so the adrenals and the rest of the body can heal holistically. 

Take recurrences of the Epstein-Barr Virus for example. Chronic viruses and their severe symptoms can only take hold of a person who is already suffering from underlying adrenal imbalances. Once Adrenal Fatigue is treated, other immunity issues can begin to heal.

 If the immune system is strong, even viruses like Epstein-Barr can remain dormant in the body. A healthy body is built to fight such viruses. Once your adrenals are restored, your body will be equipped to fight typical virus symptoms. 

Is Adrenal Fatigue an Autoimmune Disease?

In short: No. 

Adrenal Fatigue isn’t an autoimmune disease, although it can lead to many unpleasant immune-related symptoms, such as food allergies, chronic congestion, post-nasal drip, runny nose, environmental allergies, and histamine-related issues. However, there is a distinct and intricate link between Adrenal Fatigue and allergies.

Adrenal Fatigue and Food Allergies

Food allergies may appear at any time. Why?  In part because the stomach is the largest nerve center outside of the brain. It’s even referred to as the “second brain.” 

The relationship between stress and the brain is obvious; the relationship between stress and the stomach is less obvious. Physiologically, when we’re facing a stressful situation, the central nervous system shuts down digestion by both slowing contractions of the digestive muscles and decreasing digestion secretions. All the body’s resources have been rerouted to answer the “fight or flight” call. 

Once the so-called fire has been put out, the body reverts to its more normal “rest and digest” response. However, research has shown that frequent episodes of stress-induced digestive suppression sets up the perfect environment for food sensitivities and allergies to develop. 

Adrenal Fatigue and the Autoimmune Correlation

When your body experiences infection or trauma, the innate part of the immune system is alerted. It locates the site and moves to it. After its assessment, the innate immune system then leads the decision-making process, determining which parts of the immune system should be called in as reinforcements.

The immune system’s primary responsibility is damage control or inflammation control. A well-balanced innate immune response generates a controlled, well-orchestrated, strategic defense. Yet, for patients suffering from Adrenal Fatigue, this defense against infection or injury can be limited. The immune system loses control and can begin to overcreate antibodies, leading to allergy and even autoimmune conditions.

When researchers investigated the immune systems of patients with Adrenal Dysfunction, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, and Fibromyalgia, they found numerous biochemical abnormalities in the usual processes of the innate immunity function. Abnormalities were also sighted in many other immune cells, prompting scientific thinking to conclude that Adrenal Fatigue can significantly dysregulate the immune system.

Conquering Adrenal Fatigue and Immune System Issues

Adrenal Fatigue healing is achieved with proper lifestyle tweaks, herbal remedies, diet and nutritional adjustments, and sleep hygiene. These crucial steps can heal Adrenal Fatigue and boost the immune system at the same time.   

Starting slow and making small, single changes at a time are key to conquering Adrenal Fatigue and immunity issues. While moving slowly may be frustrating, it’s better than adding too many lifestyle and health changes at once, having a reaction, backing off and having to start over again. 

It’s best to act like a scientist by adding only one new therapy at a time. Research scientists attempt to control as many variables as possible so they can pinpoint cause and effect. Following their method makes sense. Altering more than one variable at a time leads to confusion and uncertainty. This holds true for making changes in diet, supplements, vitamins, exercise, or lifestyle. If you can, work with an Adrenal Fatigue professional to make sure you get the most of your healing process.

Managing your trigger-happy stress response and reducing all stressors will lead to a rebalancing of the Adrenal Fatigue and autoimmune issues. Allergies will clear, EBV will remain dormant, and inflammation will quiet. You’ll find you suffer from fewer colds and illnesses. Even when you do get sick, your body will be able to fight those viruses like a trooper!

Adieu to Adrenal Fatigue and Immune System Issues 

If you’re suffering from any of the conditions we discussed, you’ve probably seen numerous specialists. You may have hadad multiple lab tests done, tried various pills, herbs or cleanses. Perhaps those applications decreased the intensity of the symptoms—but here you are, still sick.   

The most effective treatment for Adrenal Fatigue and immunity issues requires a holistic review of your particular situation. Take time to slow down and invest in your health—it will pay you back with renewed health and vigor. 


Dr. Andrew Neville


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