If you have met your adrenal glands, it is usually when you became aware of how much caffeine you were drinking in a day, or how tired you were despite how many hours of sleep you were getting, or you were at a stage when you couldn’t sleep anymore because of how tired you were. The trickster hormone at the center of these pesky issues is cortisol, born and raised in the adrenal glands. As in every system in the body, balance is important; but this becomes more and more difficult in our modern society–where we are required to take work emails on our phones, which we carry with us everywhere–we never turn off, and our adrenal glands compensate for a time, until they can no longer sustain us and we have to supplement with caffeine and the like. In medical school, I lived and died by how much coffee I could safely consume in a 24-hour period. (Not my proudest moment.) And the situation did not improve when I transitioned into my residency.
If Not Now, When?