• Anne Woods-Tinkum

Adrenal Fatigue: Part III |What's Your Root?

Updated: Jul 20, 2018

Most western medical outcomes for addressing Adrenal Fatigue are short lived and extremely slow to take effect. Treatments focus on reducing stress and refilling the bucket (see previous article for the bucket analogy) with various supplements and vitamins. It certainly helps sufferers feel a little better, but this approach fails to address the root cause (a.k.a. the holes in the bucket). Using the system of Five Element Functional Medicine offers a safe, powerful, precise way to to seal the holes in the bucket and promote true, long lasting health and healing.


What is Five Element Theory?

Simplified: Five Element Theory is an in-depth system of understanding the body. Ancient Chinese people observed and recognized continuous patterns of transformation and change in the universe and the natural world. The five elements theory evolved from the study of nature’s various processes, functions, and phenomena.The theory asserts that all things can be divided into one of five basic elements: wood, fire, water, metal and earth. Each one contains their own specific characteristics and properties.

Understanding the physical and emotional components of these elements allows for a comprehensive understanding of each person’s body/mind struggle. This information guides the treatment and eliminates the need for expensive testing, complicated supplement regimes and unsustainable dietary restrictions.


Which Element is your Root Cause?

You may not experience all of the things listed, but most people will relate to several of the symptoms. Figuring this out is our first step in healing.


Note: There can sometimes be a combination of root causes.


Wood: From the Chinese Medical perspective, the Wood Element relates to the Liver and Gallbladder. When wood is out of balance⏤the root cause⏤there is often a history of emotional stress, tension, anger, frustration, inability to relax, a desire to control and a sense of struggling to “hold it all together.” There are struggles with mood, hormones, menstrual cycles, infertility, emotional eating, the sense of lumps in the throat, pain around the ribs, and painful periods.


Fire: The Fire Element relates to the Heart and Small Intestine. It is uncommon to see Fire Element as the root cause in Adrenal Fatigue, but it can happen. A Fire imbalance often manifests as thyroid issues, heart disease, heart palpitations, irregular heartbeat, and insomnia.


Earth: The Earth Element relates to the Spleen and Stomach. It is essential in turning food and drink into energy for the body. Earth imbalances will show up in issues like sugar craving, overeating, nausea, indigestion, blood sugar issues, hypoglycemia, diabetes, weight gain, and weak muscles. Earth sphere imbalance manifests as anxiety, worry, overthinking, and obsessive ruminating.


Metal: The metal element relates to the Lungs and Large Intestine. Metal root imbalance can cause respiratory and immune system issues such as allergies, sinus problems, asthma, skin conditions and catching colds easily. It can also manifest as intestinal issues such as IBS, Crohn's Disease, chronic constipation and/or diarrhea. Metal sphere disturbance will also show up as a difficulty in setting physical and emotional boundaries. The emotion of grief can be strong enough to cause this imbalance.


Water: Water relates to the Kidney and Urinary Bladder. Eventually all of the above root causes begin to affect the Water element. Individuals with a Water imbalance will have difficulty waking in the morning, experiencing deep fatigue and a foggy head. Some water imbalances will show up as apathy and a lack of willpower. When Water is the root cause there is most often a history of constitutional weakness (slow growth or failure to thrive as a child) or trauma. The Water Element sufferer has been damaged by deep fear, anxiety, abuse or abandonment in the developmental years.


Can you relate to any of these elements? Are you ready to feel good again? Knowing your physical and emotional history is key to determining the best method to facilitate healing⏤body, mind and spirit⏤in the fastest way possible. In the next article I will address ways in which you can tap into your body’s innate healing abilities to reclaim your energy, focus and well-being.


If you want a more personal evaluation of your symptoms, please contact us for a Free Consultation.

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