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Adrenal Stress Index (ASI) Maff Hot

Written by Maff     July 21, 2009    
 
9.0
6685   0   0   0   0

The Adrenal Stress Index (ASI) test is used to determine the levels of the adrenal cortex hormones, cortisol and DHEA/DHEA-S, throughout the day. This information is important because appropriate production and release of these hormones is required for us to deal with the stresses of the day, from simply having the energy to get out of bed, to dealing with work and relationship stress, as well as the life and death situations which trigger the fight-or-flight-response.

This test is often used when people feel their ability to cope with stress has decreased or they are experiencing symptoms associated with adrenal fatigue such as:

- Fatigue
- Feeling Drained
- Hypoglycaemia/Blood Sugar Imbalance
- Dizziness Upon Standing
- Insomnia
- Not Feeling Rested on Waking
- Poor Stress Tolerance
- Depression
- Poor Exercise Tolerance
- Recurrent Infections
- Allergies
- Chemical Sensitivies
- Lack of Mental Alertness

The ASI test is also used in conditions such as chronic fatigue syndrome (ME/CFS) and fibromyalgia as studies have indicated that the adrenal glands and the mechanisms controlling them are often dysfunctional, resulting in low cortisol and DHEA production.


What the Adrenal Stress Index (ASI) Test Involves

The ASI is a simple inexpensive saliva test that can be carried out at home. It involves the collection of saliva samples in test tubes provided at specific times throughout the day. There are usually 4 or 6 sample collection times typically starting with the first at 6-8am and the last a midnight. You must not eat for a few hours before each sample to avoid contamination.

Once you have collected the samples you simply seal them in a prepaid envelope provided and mail them back to the lab.


Explanation

The lab will mail your results back to you, typically with graphs displaying your hormone levels throughout the day along with the numerical results. The lab may also provide interpretation of the results. It is best to discuss your results with your doctor or other health care provider however as interpretation and determination of appropriate treatment is complex. General hormone concentrations as well how they vary throughout the day (the circadian rhythm) and the relationship between cortisol and DHEA levels are all important factors to consider.

 

 

Editor reviews

Although providing the saliva samples throughout the day is a bit inconvenient (and it is often hard to even produce the required amount of saliva) it is worth it to understand how your adrenal glands are functioning.I have had two ASI tests and the results for cortisol in particular have correlated exactly with my symptoms.

Cortisol levels are supposed to be highest in the morning to give us the drive and energy to get going. They are then supposed to decline gradually throughout the day, reeaching their lowest level at night to allow sound sleep.

My results show that my cortisol levels are low in the morning, which explains my inability to wake up and get going until late morning (10:30-11:00). They then rise and peak around 12-1 and this is when I am feeling a lot better and am my most productive. My cortisol then falls and reaches a low at 4pm when I experience a corresponding period of drowsiness and it is a real struggle to carry on being active. My results then indicate my cortisol shoots up at night which explains why I find it hard to relax in the evening and don't go to bed until late. My sleep is also of very poor quality.

I should explain that I have suffered from chronic fatigue syndrome for 18 years from the age of 12 and these results are typical of an ME/CFS patient.

The results have been very helpful to me and I have found licorice is effective at boosting my low morning cortisol while phosphatidylserine blunts my high night time levels and allows me to sleep better. The results also showed generally low DHEA and I have found DHEA supplementation to be very useful at improving my stress resistance, mood, and general feelings of well-being.

I'd recommend this test to anyone suffering from chronic stress and associated symptoms as well as those suffering from ME/CFS, fibromyalgia, and unexplained chronic illness.

Overall rating 
 
9.0
Ease of use 
 
7.0
Value for money 
 
9.0
Usefulness of results 
 
10.0
Would you recommend? 
 
10.0
Maff Reviewed by Maff July 21, 2009
Last updated: July 31, 2009
#1 Reviewer  -   View all my reviews (107)

Helped explain many symptoms and guided treatment

Although providing the saliva samples throughout the day is a bit inconvenient (and it is often hard to even produce the required amount of saliva) it is worth it to understand how your adrenal glands are functioning.I have had two ASI tests and the results for cortisol in particular have correlated exactly with my symptoms.

Cortisol levels are supposed to be highest in the morning to give us the drive and energy to get going. They are then supposed to decline gradually throughout the day, reeaching their lowest level at night to allow sound sleep.

My results show that my cortisol levels are low in the morning, which explains my inability to wake up and get going until late morning (10:30-11:00). They then rise and peak around 12-1 and this is when I am feeling a lot better and am my most productive. My cortisol then falls and reaches a low at 4pm when I experience a corresponding period of drowsiness and it is a real struggle to carry on being active. My results then indicate my cortisol shoots up at night which explains why I find it hard to relax in the evening and don't go to bed until late. My sleep is also of very poor quality.

I should explain that I have suffered from chronic fatigue syndrome for 18 years from the age of 12 and these results are typical of an ME/CFS patient.

The results have been very helpful to me and I have found licorice is effective at boosting my low morning cortisol while phosphatidylserine blunts my high night time levels and allows me to sleep better. The results also showed generally low DHEA and I have found DHEA supplementation to be very useful at improving my stress resistance, mood, and general feelings of well-being.

I'd recommend this test to anyone suffering from chronic stress and associated symptoms as well as those suffering from ME/CFS, fibromyalgia, and unexplained chronic illness.

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