1

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Can you inherit adrenal fatigue or can it only be induced by lifestyle?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created July 14, 2011 at 7:48 AM

I know adrenal fatigue is a controversial topic as to whether it even exists, but I would like to temporarily suspend disbelief on that for this question.

We could just be a family of hardcore night owls, but whenever I see a list of the symptoms 3 generations of my family would seem to fit pretty squarely into having adrenal fatigue: a burst of energy in the evening and staying up waaaay too late regardless of consequences the following morning, can't get moving upon waking, needing a lot of coffee, ankle sprains from loose ligaments, responding well to adaptogens, etc.

I'm not sure about my dad, but my son and I do our best sleeping after the sun comes up in the morning, which most of the sleep experts claim to be out of sync with a healthy sleep/wake cycle. We get enough sleep, just not at the "right" times, and the days start really slow.

I thought it was just our family's bad habits about too much light and TV in the evening for the last 2 generations, and now we seem to have a third generation falling into the same thing regardless of evening light exposure, and I am wondering if this is a case of nature or nurture?

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on July 14, 2011
at 07:09 PM

I had no idea that easily sprained ankles was a supposedly a sign of adrenal fatigue until I mentioned it to an ND in passing about seeming prone to ankle sprains, and she said something along the lines of, "Of course you sprain your ankles easily, you have adrenal fatigue and that is causing loose ligaments." I thought it was a little odd, but tried eleuthero ginseng for a while, and sure enough my ankles seem more stable. Still seems weird to me though, and I would love if anybody had any ideas about how adrenal health could affect my ankles.

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on July 14, 2011
at 07:01 PM

Being a night owl feels like a family trait. I wonder if there could have been some sort of evolutionary benefit to have a certain percentage of the population up late to watch for predators until 2am or so when the multi-phasic sleepers would then get up for a few hours, and when they went back to sleep you'd then have the early risers on watch.

9759643ce5d97ab8fa649ae954656c4c

(3325)

on July 14, 2011
at 08:02 AM

I'll be watching this closely. What you wrote sounds *exactly* like my parents, myself, and several, if not all of my 6 siblings. It's 1am Pacific time, I'm winding down from the evening hours when I get my best work done. It's taken me years, but I've slowly pushed my bedtime from 4am to 2 am.

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3 Answers

best answer

1
F1b39d4f620876330312f4925bd51900

(4090)

on July 14, 2011
at 03:59 PM

I interviewed like 5-6 years ago to be a research assistant to a sleep doctor/researcher at the university of utah. He was studying this very issue. His stance was that it was genetic and he was tracing families for their sleep patterns. I don't remember his name or I would do a search for one of his studies.

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on July 14, 2011
at 07:01 PM

Being a night owl feels like a family trait. I wonder if there could have been some sort of evolutionary benefit to have a certain percentage of the population up late to watch for predators until 2am or so when the multi-phasic sleepers would then get up for a few hours, and when they went back to sleep you'd then have the early risers on watch.

2
66974b2cb291799dcd661b7dec99a9e2

(11121)

on July 14, 2011
at 02:30 PM

I would think anything can have a genetic component to it, but personally I am usually an early riser, many years ago I became a night owl due to my job and family circumstances, this lasted for many years. This ended up affecting my son who became a night owl too. Once my circumstances changed it took me a lot of time & effort but I finally got back to normal.

0
34a367e60db77270bd7096dc04270fdc

(4171)

on July 14, 2011
at 12:32 PM

I wonder if it is just a learned behavior. My father was almost always in bed by 9pm but my mother was often up until after midnight. I normally am up until 11 or 12 myself and have always had a hard time getting sleepy enough togo to bed early. Unless I'm exhausted it takes me forever to fall asleep. I see the same thing in my 15 year old son too. He's always up too late unless it's during the school year when I'm forcing him to go to bed by 10. He often needs a melatonin to get to sleep at a decent time. None of us has any ankle sprains or anything like that though.

6120c989fd5b69f42a0834b69b87955b

(24553)

on July 14, 2011
at 07:09 PM

I had no idea that easily sprained ankles was a supposedly a sign of adrenal fatigue until I mentioned it to an ND in passing about seeming prone to ankle sprains, and she said something along the lines of, "Of course you sprain your ankles easily, you have adrenal fatigue and that is causing loose ligaments." I thought it was a little odd, but tried eleuthero ginseng for a while, and sure enough my ankles seem more stable. Still seems weird to me though, and I would love if anybody had any ideas about how adrenal health could affect my ankles.

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