Medical herbalist Nicola Parker has a herbal solution to burn-out when your GP can’t help you

For many people  blood tests do not detect any hormonal issues and so they are unable to receive any treatment.

By Medical herbalist Nicola Parker
Wednesday, 15th September 2021, 12:30 pm

Many years ago, one of my colleagues designed a formula to help people manage burn out and adrenal fatigue. It’s a common presentation in people who have been through long exposure to stress.

The term adrenal fatigue is not an accepted diagnosis among the medical community. Blood tests can pick up changes in your adrenal hormones and if you are concerned that you have a problem, it’s a good idea to get this checked out via your GP. This ensures that you’re not living with an undiagnosed medical condition that is treatable.

For many people though, blood tests do not detect any hormonal issues and so they are unable to receive any treatment.


The many people experiencing this have coined the terms burn out and adrenal fatigue. They are words used to describe a collection of symptoms that can occur after a long period of stress, without any other medical cause.

Chronic tiredness, brain fog and a general feeling of being under the weather are common symptoms after a period of extended stress. Tiredness isn’t improved by sleep and you may find that you’re having to rely on caffeine or sweet snacks to keep your energy up through the day.

Brain fog can be frustrating, as it becomes difficult to think quickly and clearly. Forgetting what you were saying, why you walked into certain rooms and struggling to find words that are “on the tip of your tongue” are all common among people who complain of brain fog.

Feeling like this long-term is rubbish, which is why my colleague decided to formulate a product that supports adrenal function, for people who feel like they are going through burnout. It worked brilliantly. I was delighted to see so many people report that their energy had returned and managing stress much better. I was also deeply disappointed when the formula was discontinued, as there didn’t seem anything like it to take it’s place.

This has been the case for years, leading me to encourage most people presenting with this level of tiredness to schedule appointments in my clinic, where I can make bespoke herbal formulas. Unfortunately, not everyone wants to do this and I missed having a quick recommendation to hand that can be bought over the counter. Until now!

I came across a product by chance after a sales rep left us some products to try. It was called Ashwagandha and Rhodiola Complex. I became interested because I love Rhodiola (pictured) as a herb for mental and psychological stress. I recommend it for exams, extended work periods, emotional stresses and any time when your brain needs that extra boost in mental performance.

In contrast, Ashwagandha is the herb I choose for physically building someone back up. After a long period of being unwell, for example, or after a high stress lifestyle has led to poor sleep and bad eating habits that leave one feeling overworked and exhausted.

So, the blend of the two herbs seemed perfect. In addition to these herbs, it contains vitamin B5, the nutrient most famous for supporting adrenal function. This nutrient is gobbled up quickly during times of fight or flight, when your stress hormones need to be at their highest, so adding in extra to supplement your diet when you need it is always a good idea.

The best way to use herbs and nutrients like this is to take them when you need them, long before the fatigue can set in.

Rhodiola and Ashwagandha are considered by herbalists to be adaptogens, meaning that they help your body adapt to new pressures or circumstances. The less stress hormones you flood your body with, the healthier you’ll remain, but if you are in a position of feeling constantly wiped out, in recovery from stressful situations, it’s not too late to help yourself.

If your doctor has told you that there is nothing wrong and they can offer no treatment, this is where many natural health formulas come into their own. They are designed for these sub-clinical pictures, to help a growing number of people increasingly frustrated by the lack of understanding or treatment for their constant tiredness.

l For more information on this issue, or to book an appointment with Nicola, contact her clinic on 01524 413733.