Adrenal Fatigue vs Hypothyroidism

Contact us to speak to a pharmacist for more information on these conditions (0800 HORMONE).

Differences between Hypothyroidism & Adrenal Fatigue:


  • Fatigue- all day long
  • Feels relatively same all day long
  • Foods- prefers sugary foods with caffeine
  • Low basal body temperature
  • Intolerance to cold
  • Hair loss- scalp, brows
  • Dry skin
  • Stubborn constipation
  • Loss of outer 1/3 of eyebrows
  • Can't increase stamina
  • Depression mores constant
  • Hypoglycaemia not as marked
  • Energy more constantly low
  • Cravings for sweets, refined CHO's or high energy food that don't require digestion. (adding protein often decreases sweet cravings)
  • Addition of salt doesn't change symptoms
  • Crashes by 9.30pm at night
  • No second wind at 11pm
  • Time they get up makes no difference
  • Cardiac- bradycardia most common sign
  • Weight gain (not always present & not related to calorie intake)
  • Weight distribution- hips & thighs
  • Weight loss-very difficult without treatment
  • Menstruation- heavy & longer
  • Estrogen/progesterone therapy may increase symptoms if thyroid is not treated

Adrenal Fatigue

Adrenal Fatigue

  • Fatigue- early morning & mid-afternoon
  • Feels worse in the morning & best after 6pm
  • Foods- prefer fats & protein with caffeine
  • Body temperature low if severe
  • Not as extreme
  • Yes in men on lateral calf
  • Dry skin
  • Mild constipation, often alternates with diarrhoea
  • Normal eyebrows
  • Stamina varies, often within day
  • Depression more intermittent
  • Hypoglycaemia-especially under stress
  • Diurnal energy patterns
  • Cravings for salt or salty foods, or high fats, with protein & caffeine
  • Addition of salt improves symptoms
  • Frequently tired at 9.30pm, but can push themselves through
  • Second wind at 11pm is frequent
  • Often feels better if can sleep until 9am
  • Cardiac- can have lower volume & weaker contraction if severe
  • Weight gain- not always present could be loss instead can be calorie related
  • Weight distribution- abdominal apron
  • Weight loss-usually decreases gradually with exercise, decreased stress & Carbohydrate intake
  • Menstruation- heavy onset, often lighter by 3-4th day or may skip 3-4th & return on 5th day
  • Estrogen/ progesterone therapy may help some but doesn't change AF symptoms