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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
According to the people who are diagnosed with Depersonalization Disorder, their cortisol levels are virtually non-existant, compared to the normal people who do not have this disorder. Cortisol is actually a sort of balance drug, which regulates your craving for carbohydrates. Sugar and caffeine are related to cortisol in that if you drink caffeine, your cortisol level rises, and you become slightly more energetic. If caffeine is combined with sugar, this rise increases to as much as 18 times (according to medical tests).

Now comes the tricky part. I believe people who suffer from depersonalization are classified into two types - both lead to the same disorder, but we come via different ways - one is through depression and anxiety, and the other is through trauma. Some may argue that the depression and anxiety could well be a byproduct of trauma, and I will have to agree on that. The difference between the two is that those who are inflicted with this disorder via depression and anxiety find some kind of cure with anti-depressants and anti-anxiety drugs like Prozac etc. For the ones who get inflicted through trauma (like me), these drugs actually WORSEN the disorder. I know this because I took an anti-depressant (caused by the disorder in part) prescribed an inept psychiatrist, and it worsened the disorder so badly that I thought I was going crazy. The entire world changed many folds over, and everything seemed hazy and strange, even to someone who has weathered this condition for over a decade and managed to get a pretty normal life.

Then here's the kicker. When I read about the cortisol levels and the effects of coffee and sugar, I tried it when the condition got worse when I was really tired and the disorder was starting to make me feel slightly confused. The effect managed to kick start my adrenaline and made me able to, at least for a while, lighten the effects of the disorder. However, this also made me crave bread. I managed to inhale a half-loaf in 15 minutes.

According to the studies, rises in cortisol levels make you crave carbohydrates, making you fat. So if this is the case, that would mean that it actually works, and my body isn't exactly resilient or adapted to the chemical. It just means that my BRAIN is. Cortisol alone is able to affect a number of functions, and the key is that although all other functions are still intact for us, the key one which links our experiences to reality has been somehow Severed.

According to more studies on cortisol, it highlights stress levels and susceptibility to adrenal fatigue like burn out or exhaustion. Cortisol increases under stress, raising blood glucose, breaking up muscle protein and fat for energy, and increasing responsiveness to effects of adrenaline and stimulating cardiac output. This is important, because most of DP sufferers say exercise works. I can vouchsafe for that. After an intense game of basketball or after my Karate lessons, I feel more invigorated and more alert than I usually do.

Besides that, another thing I once remarked during my Karate lessons is that my fight or flight responses seem to be dulled, for some reason. Cortisol actually is the regulator of this response. Stress elevates cortisol levels almost 10-fold, making people susceptible to diseases like diabetes and obesity due to the sudden food cravings. And here is the Key Point : Over-elevated Cortisol levels can actually impair cognition due to cortisol induced damage to the hippocampus, the area of the brain vital for learning and memory. It also leads to depression and insomnia.

Cortisol is caused by stress. Unfortunately, we have too low levels of cortisol, which means instead of feeling alert and awake during times of duress, we instead maintain the same fluffy warmness and surrealness we feel all the time. This probably defines DP. When we feel stressed, we get confused and uncomfortable, because our cortisol is unable to raise up to counter the stresses we feel.

Since depression and stress shrinks the brains, it's not entirely strange to find that most DP sufferers are actually highly intelligent and inquisitive. In fact, instead of thinking outside the box like most people, we live outside the box in it's entirety. To us, thinking inside the box is the challenge. This will probably lead to another field of studies in order to get people to be more creative, I'm sure.

That said, cortisol may be the key thing in regulating and stirring the other person within us.

I have another observation I'd like to point out. REM is closely related to DP - we all know this because we all feel in a state of dreaminess constantly (for the chronic sufferers, anyway), and the interesting thing is, when we panic, REM actually occurs. Have you tried to focus on any One Single Thing when you panic? You'll realise your pupils are moving so quickly your vision seems shaky and unreal. In other words, REM is related to brain responses of threat, which should have instinctively made you react, but people who have gone through trauma are so used to being under pressure, stress, and general threat that the fight or flight response has burnt itself into our brains (Or to be more accurate, the response electolyte has fused), and constantly living under this condition has made us adapt to the response. I, for one, have become mellowed due to the fact that I don't even react when threatened severely. (Hence I took up Karate)
The only way around this, I believe, is to unlearn the way we don't respond to threat, by simply learning to respond to threat. This will not raise the veil of dreams, but at least it will make us more...well, able to survive, if it comes to that.
I've heard many theories that it may be a condition that we can actually choose to forgo, if my mind was somehow stronger. It's like losing weight--we just have to put our mind to it.
My theory is based on evolutionary theorum. I realise that for most people, it's a direct result of trauma suffered as a child or adult. For most people, it's childhood trauma. Because of this, I believe that it is a conditioned...erm...condition. When we burn our fingers, a blister forms, filled with water to soften and cushion and protect the injury. A clot forms on an open wound. Body parts fall off when frost-bite sets in. The human body finds ways to survive and continue to live.
Because of the trauma, our minds may have developed a certain 'detachment', a certain escape route into an alternate reality, where everything seems softened, less sharp, less real, to protect itself from trauma. By regulating certain chemicals in the body, like how we feel "full" when we eat. But like obese people who have grown somehow immune to the chemical, we could have easily become able to ignore the raise in the levels of that particular bodily reaction.
So if that is the case, then to beat this insensitivity, we should adopt the same method as the obese people in treating their own sicknesses, which is to dance sensual dances while pretending to be ballet dancers.
Oh eewww. I made myself sick typing that.
Actually, there is no known cure, because there's nothing clearly wrong with the body--it's just that we've been exposed too much to it that we become insensitized. I suppose Trauma is really just that ? overexposure to a certain chemical in the brain that makes us imbalanced. Instead of being able to respond to an influx of that chemical when threat presents itself, we become so used to it that we don?t respond to it all all. Morever, that particular chemical can damage the brain when excess of it is produced, and therefore in a way, we have had our brains ?injured? due to the excess of the chemical, and are unable to fully utilise our sensory perceptions.
So in other words, finding the opposite of trance inducing drugs like Ecstasy, etc, will also mean a ways of heightening consiousness and alleviating us from this ailment, since these drugs cause DP. But it'll also mean dependency and addiction, because just as the trance-inducing drugs are addictive, the opposites will mean a strong bounce to reality, and a sink into deeper trances, like bouncing forcibly in the water. The other thing is that instead of working to find ways to remove some chemical or add some chemical to the brain, perhaps we should work on developing some kind of bypass to utilise another part of our brains, or perhaps some kind of substance that will actually heal the injury.
The first thing, however, will be to assess where the injury is located, that we may cure it. How does one stimulate that particular part of the brain? Will stimulation alone work? Why is electrotherapy so subjective in it?s success rate? What about hibernation? Will a prolonged shut down of the human mind assist in it?s repair?
All of this will remain theory until proven otherwise. :p
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
According to the people who are diagnosed with Depersonalization Disorder, their cortisol levels are virtually non-existant, compared to the normal people who do not have this disorder. Cortisol is actually a sort of balance drug, which regulates your craving for carbohydrates. Sugar and caffeine are related to cortisol in that if you drink caffeine, your cortisol level rises, and you become slightly more energetic. If caffeine is combined with sugar, this rise increases to as much as 18 times (according to medical tests).

Now comes the tricky part. I believe people who suffer from depersonalization are classified into two types - both lead to the same disorder, but we come via different ways - one is through depression and anxiety, and the other is through trauma. Some may argue that the depression and anxiety could well be a byproduct of trauma, and I will have to agree on that. The difference between the two is that those who are inflicted with this disorder via depression and anxiety find some kind of cure with anti-depressants and anti-anxiety drugs like Prozac etc. For the ones who get inflicted through trauma (like me), these drugs actually WORSEN the disorder. I know this because I took an anti-depressant (caused by the disorder in part) prescribed an inept psychiatrist, and it worsened the disorder so badly that I thought I was going crazy. The entire world changed many folds over, and everything seemed hazy and strange, even to someone who has weathered this condition for over a decade and managed to get a pretty normal life.

Then here's the kicker. When I read about the cortisol levels and the effects of coffee and sugar, I tried it when the condition got worse when I was really tired and the disorder was starting to make me feel slightly confused. The effect managed to kick start my adrenaline and made me able to, at least for a while, lighten the effects of the disorder. However, this also made me crave bread. I managed to inhale a half-loaf in 15 minutes.

According to the studies, rises in cortisol levels make you crave carbohydrates, making you fat. So if this is the case, that would mean that it actually works, and my body isn't exactly resilient or adapted to the chemical. It just means that my BRAIN is. Cortisol alone is able to affect a number of functions, and the key is that although all other functions are still intact for us, the key one which links our experiences to reality has been somehow Severed.

According to more studies on cortisol, it highlights stress levels and susceptibility to adrenal fatigue like burn out or exhaustion. Cortisol increases under stress, raising blood glucose, breaking up muscle protein and fat for energy, and increasing responsiveness to effects of adrenaline and stimulating cardiac output. This is important, because most of DP sufferers say exercise works. I can vouchsafe for that. After an intense game of basketball or after my Karate lessons, I feel more invigorated and more alert than I usually do.

Besides that, another thing I once remarked during my Karate lessons is that my fight or flight responses seem to be dulled, for some reason. Cortisol actually is the regulator of this response. Stress elevates cortisol levels almost 10-fold, making people susceptible to diseases like diabetes and obesity due to the sudden food cravings. And here is the Key Point : Over-elevated Cortisol levels can actually impair cognition due to cortisol induced damage to the hippocampus, the area of the brain vital for learning and memory. It also leads to depression and insomnia.

Cortisol is caused by stress. Unfortunately, we have too low levels of cortisol, which means instead of feeling alert and awake during times of duress, we instead maintain the same fluffy warmness and surrealness we feel all the time. This probably defines DP. When we feel stressed, we get confused and uncomfortable, because our cortisol is unable to raise up to counter the stresses we feel.

Since depression and stress shrinks the brains, it's not entirely strange to find that most DP sufferers are actually highly intelligent and inquisitive. In fact, instead of thinking outside the box like most people, we live outside the box in it's entirety. To us, thinking inside the box is the challenge. This will probably lead to another field of studies in order to get people to be more creative, I'm sure.

That said, cortisol may be the key thing in regulating and stirring the other person within us.

I have another observation I'd like to point out. REM is closely related to DP - we all know this because we all feel in a state of dreaminess constantly (for the chronic sufferers, anyway), and the interesting thing is, when we panic, REM actually occurs. Have you tried to focus on any One Single Thing when you panic? You'll realise your pupils are moving so quickly your vision seems shaky and unreal. In other words, REM is related to brain responses of threat, which should have instinctively made you react, but people who have gone through trauma are so used to being under pressure, stress, and general threat that the fight or flight response has burnt itself into our brains (Or to be more accurate, the response electolyte has fused), and constantly living under this condition has made us adapt to the response. I, for one, have become mellowed due to the fact that I don't even react when threatened severely. (Hence I took up Karate)
The only way around this, I believe, is to unlearn the way we don't respond to threat, by simply learning to respond to threat. This will not raise the veil of dreams, but at least it will make us more...well, able to survive, if it comes to that.
I've heard many theories that it may be a condition that we can actually choose to forgo, if my mind was somehow stronger. It's like losing weight--we just have to put our mind to it.
My theory is based on evolutionary theorum. I realise that for most people, it's a direct result of trauma suffered as a child or adult. For most people, it's childhood trauma. Because of this, I believe that it is a conditioned...erm...condition. When we burn our fingers, a blister forms, filled with water to soften and cushion and protect the injury. A clot forms on an open wound. Body parts fall off when frost-bite sets in. The human body finds ways to survive and continue to live.
Because of the trauma, our minds may have developed a certain 'detachment', a certain escape route into an alternate reality, where everything seems softened, less sharp, less real, to protect itself from trauma. By regulating certain chemicals in the body, like how we feel "full" when we eat. But like obese people who have grown somehow immune to the chemical, we could have easily become able to ignore the raise in the levels of that particular bodily reaction.
So if that is the case, then to beat this insensitivity, we should adopt the same method as the obese people in treating their own sicknesses, which is to dance sensual dances while pretending to be ballet dancers.
Oh eewww. I made myself sick typing that.
Actually, there is no known cure, because there's nothing clearly wrong with the body--it's just that we've been exposed too much to it that we become insensitized. I suppose Trauma is really just that ? overexposure to a certain chemical in the brain that makes us imbalanced. Instead of being able to respond to an influx of that chemical when threat presents itself, we become so used to it that we don?t respond to it all all. Morever, that particular chemical can damage the brain when excess of it is produced, and therefore in a way, we have had our brains ?injured? due to the excess of the chemical, and are unable to fully utilise our sensory perceptions.
So in other words, finding the opposite of trance inducing drugs like Ecstasy, etc, will also mean a ways of heightening consiousness and alleviating us from this ailment, since these drugs cause DP. But it'll also mean dependency and addiction, because just as the trance-inducing drugs are addictive, the opposites will mean a strong bounce to reality, and a sink into deeper trances, like bouncing forcibly in the water. The other thing is that instead of working to find ways to remove some chemical or add some chemical to the brain, perhaps we should work on developing some kind of bypass to utilise another part of our brains, or perhaps some kind of substance that will actually heal the injury.
The first thing, however, will be to assess where the injury is located, that we may cure it. How does one stimulate that particular part of the brain? Will stimulation alone work? Why is electrotherapy so subjective in it?s success rate? What about hibernation? Will a prolonged shut down of the human mind assist in it?s repair?
All of this will remain theory until proven otherwise. :p
 

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wow!

that was one hell of a read!

briiliant!

thank you for posting all this...

i am going to have to read it a few more times to remember what was said though (bad concentration and memory :roll: )

what i find difficult is that i had a traumatic experience from tablets which were for anxiety and depression :? so where do i stand?

thank you again for putting up these issues though...:D
 

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wow!

that was one hell of a read!

briiliant!

thank you for posting all this...

i am going to have to read it a few more times to remember what was said though (bad concentration and memory :roll: )

what i find difficult is that i had a traumatic experience from tablets which were for anxiety and depression :? so where do i stand?

thank you again for putting up these issues though...:D
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I suppose it could be considered a type of trauma, or if put in a more appropriate but less gentle manner, a type of brain-damage. Excess of any type of thing will damage the body or mind - we work on a fairly fragile balance, which requires maintainence from time to time, be it relieving of stress, etcetc.

Perhaps for those who incur drug-induced DP, the symptoms may stay around for some time, unless your brain can somehow "repair" itself. I have had Chronic DP for more than a decade now, and I mean this in no disheartening manner. I am still searching for ways to heal the brain, after discovering what i had is DP 2 weeks ago.

This is just an idea, but here goes :

People who have been rescued from fires but have inhaled too much smoke sometimes present signs of confusion or difficulty in cohesion. These victims usually have to go through a somewhat intensive period in the hospital breathing almost pure oxygen. (Or was it totally pure?)

Similarly in people who suffer from decompression sickness, signs of confusion settle in.

Could it be, and this is still a theory, that the same treatment can benefit us? After all, lack of sleep usually worsens DP, and lack of sleep is associated with less oxygen being taken in. I've noticed that when I'm really sleepy, my breathing becomes shallow and sometimes I can stop breathing for a few seconds (unconsciously). This usually sends me into a deeper DP Trance than usual, until I take a deep breath, and the world suddenly seems to 'light up'. Since we feel generally lethargic most of the time, could oxygen treatment help?

Has anyone tried it yet?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I suppose it could be considered a type of trauma, or if put in a more appropriate but less gentle manner, a type of brain-damage. Excess of any type of thing will damage the body or mind - we work on a fairly fragile balance, which requires maintainence from time to time, be it relieving of stress, etcetc.

Perhaps for those who incur drug-induced DP, the symptoms may stay around for some time, unless your brain can somehow "repair" itself. I have had Chronic DP for more than a decade now, and I mean this in no disheartening manner. I am still searching for ways to heal the brain, after discovering what i had is DP 2 weeks ago.

This is just an idea, but here goes :

People who have been rescued from fires but have inhaled too much smoke sometimes present signs of confusion or difficulty in cohesion. These victims usually have to go through a somewhat intensive period in the hospital breathing almost pure oxygen. (Or was it totally pure?)

Similarly in people who suffer from decompression sickness, signs of confusion settle in.

Could it be, and this is still a theory, that the same treatment can benefit us? After all, lack of sleep usually worsens DP, and lack of sleep is associated with less oxygen being taken in. I've noticed that when I'm really sleepy, my breathing becomes shallow and sometimes I can stop breathing for a few seconds (unconsciously). This usually sends me into a deeper DP Trance than usual, until I take a deep breath, and the world suddenly seems to 'light up'. Since we feel generally lethargic most of the time, could oxygen treatment help?

Has anyone tried it yet?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Further surveys : Most DP sufferers have this problem of being over-analytical. Over-rationalising.

Why is that a problem?

In some threads they profess that thinking and acting spontaneously helps to "repersonalize" yourself. Just by stopping your thinking and acting on whim, you can cure yourself! It's like magic!

It doesn't work for me, though. I've tried whim-behaving for months without actually thinking about it. I've lost weight, took up sports, started writing a fantasy book, gotten a new job, all kinds of stuff - and I still feel that veil covering my head.

Strange that some people can actually "unthink" themselves out of DP, if that makes any sense.

Oh hey, wait a min. If over-analysis about one's identity and self makes one DPed, does that imply that the part of the brain which evolved to teach the image of "self" is actually so newly developed that it can slip when the correct neurons click into place? Kinda like a jigsaw puzzle which disassembles itself?

And what about the totally self-absorbed nature in which other people behave? Are we really ready for all that kind of "selfishness"? Do I really WANT to be like that?

What kind of person am I, really? How can I be myself without knowing who I am? :?
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Further surveys : Most DP sufferers have this problem of being over-analytical. Over-rationalising.

Why is that a problem?

In some threads they profess that thinking and acting spontaneously helps to "repersonalize" yourself. Just by stopping your thinking and acting on whim, you can cure yourself! It's like magic!

It doesn't work for me, though. I've tried whim-behaving for months without actually thinking about it. I've lost weight, took up sports, started writing a fantasy book, gotten a new job, all kinds of stuff - and I still feel that veil covering my head.

Strange that some people can actually "unthink" themselves out of DP, if that makes any sense.

Oh hey, wait a min. If over-analysis about one's identity and self makes one DPed, does that imply that the part of the brain which evolved to teach the image of "self" is actually so newly developed that it can slip when the correct neurons click into place? Kinda like a jigsaw puzzle which disassembles itself?

And what about the totally self-absorbed nature in which other people behave? Are we really ready for all that kind of "selfishness"? Do I really WANT to be like that?

What kind of person am I, really? How can I be myself without knowing who I am? :?
 

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hello,
i have derealization and have had this problem since taking lsd in 1990.
i also have very low cortisol levels, i had them mesured using a 4 point saliva test to mesure adrenal function(this test is cheap and easily avalable on the net, do a search). i take isocort which increases cortisol early days yet.
i think there is something in what has been said.
have a test.
trauma and low cortisol=derealization

good luck
stephen macks
 

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hello,
i have derealization and have had this problem since taking lsd in 1990.
i also have very low cortisol levels, i had them mesured using a 4 point saliva test to mesure adrenal function(this test is cheap and easily avalable on the net, do a search). i take isocort which increases cortisol early days yet.
i think there is something in what has been said.
have a test.
trauma and low cortisol=derealization

good luck
stephen macks
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
A query for studies sake : When I suffer from DR, I realise that certain thoughts go haywire. My brain gets confused, and when I try to 'steady' my brain and focus, I see a 'plastic' world. This may imply that I was doing something that inadvertently led to that. Perhaps not immediate cause and effect, like thinking about puppies and getting DRed (Just an example -_-'') but perhaps something like eating something wrong at breakfast, and then the DR sinking in at around 3 pm.

So do you guys actually realise you're brains are going "haywire" right before DR hits?
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
A query for studies sake : When I suffer from DR, I realise that certain thoughts go haywire. My brain gets confused, and when I try to 'steady' my brain and focus, I see a 'plastic' world. This may imply that I was doing something that inadvertently led to that. Perhaps not immediate cause and effect, like thinking about puppies and getting DRed (Just an example -_-'') but perhaps something like eating something wrong at breakfast, and then the DR sinking in at around 3 pm.

So do you guys actually realise you're brains are going "haywire" right before DR hits?
 

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Kerio said:
Since depression and stress shrinks the brains, it's not entirely strange to find that most DP sufferers are actually highly intelligent and inquisitive. In fact, instead of thinking outside the box like most people, we live outside the box in it's entirety. To us, thinking inside the box is the challenge.
Very well put, my friend.
 

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Kerio said:
Since depression and stress shrinks the brains, it's not entirely strange to find that most DP sufferers are actually highly intelligent and inquisitive. In fact, instead of thinking outside the box like most people, we live outside the box in it's entirety. To us, thinking inside the box is the challenge.
Very well put, my friend.
 

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Hello,

Thanks a lot for your theory - very interesting to read. One of the chaps that replied to your first post mentioned the 4 point saliva test to measure adrenal function. I am off on a search right now to buy the test for myself. I would be very interested to find out how Stephen Macks got on.

Love, Jacqueline
 

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Hello,

Thanks a lot for your theory - very interesting to read. One of the chaps that replied to your first post mentioned the 4 point saliva test to measure adrenal function. I am off on a search right now to buy the test for myself. I would be very interested to find out how Stephen Macks got on.

Love, Jacqueline
 

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it is early days for me as regard to increasing my cortisol levels,
but there is quite a bit of stuff on the net about cortisol, do a search on adrenal fatigue this will bring up loads of stuff,also try to get hold of a copy of james wilsons book adrenal fatigue and there is also stuff about it on dr lam's website.
i take isocort, easly avaiable on the web plus adrenal rebuilder and adrenal c formula on james wilsons site. i live in the uk so the last 2 were quite expencive with the postage and tax but the isocort can be bought in the uk from synergy health.
do not drink cofee or caffine try and rest and follow the protocols of wilson or dr lam.
the strange thing about me is that my cortisol levels are very low but my dhea levels are vey high. i have also had a blood test for testosterone and the results are also low, im waiting for the results of my second test to confirm my levels and maybe i will start testoterone threapy using hormone patches.
also i have allergies this is another very common problem for people with low cortisol/adrenal fatigue.
iam from manchester in the uk and would wellcome any contact from people in the uk with this problem.
[email protected]

take care
stephen macks
 

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it is early days for me as regard to increasing my cortisol levels,
but there is quite a bit of stuff on the net about cortisol, do a search on adrenal fatigue this will bring up loads of stuff,also try to get hold of a copy of james wilsons book adrenal fatigue and there is also stuff about it on dr lam's website.
i take isocort, easly avaiable on the web plus adrenal rebuilder and adrenal c formula on james wilsons site. i live in the uk so the last 2 were quite expencive with the postage and tax but the isocort can be bought in the uk from synergy health.
do not drink cofee or caffine try and rest and follow the protocols of wilson or dr lam.
the strange thing about me is that my cortisol levels are very low but my dhea levels are vey high. i have also had a blood test for testosterone and the results are also low, im waiting for the results of my second test to confirm my levels and maybe i will start testoterone threapy using hormone patches.
also i have allergies this is another very common problem for people with low cortisol/adrenal fatigue.
iam from manchester in the uk and would wellcome any contact from people in the uk with this problem.
[email protected]

take care
stephen macks
 
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