There are many reasons why you might book a cortisol test. But, for me, there was only one: to truly determine if being in a perpetual state of hurry-hurry-hurry was the root cause of my stressed skin, broken sleep and fluctuating weight.
What can be done about the problem of cortisol, and the shadow side of this important stress hormone? I’ve got five practices for you. (These are not tips, because tips are things you do once and then they fall by the wayside. Practices are different. You take them on more fully, and integrate them into your day — ultimately becoming a habit.)
Cortisol gets a bad rap. It’s blamed for anxiety, high blood pressure, stroke—you name it. But having a better understanding of this hormone’s function helps people realize that balancing this hormone—not eliminating it—is key to healthy living.
Cortisol is a stress hormone designed to give us the bursts of energy needed to escape a dangerous situation, like running away from a tiger. Unfortunately, modern life often convinces our brains that everything is a stressful situation — and it’s nearly impossible to escape an overflowing inbox. Instead of resolving the issue, we stay on high alert all the time, with elevated blood pressure and glucose levels. Over time, this becomes a serious health issue, despite how conventional medicine neglects the importance of this bad-boy hormone — and that’s not just my opinion, but the evidence continues to mount.
Scientists have known for years that elevated cortisol levels: interfere with learning and memory, lower immune function and bone density, increase weight gain, blood pressure, cholesterol, heart disease... The list goes on and on.
If there's one thing we've lost in our 24/7, go-go-go way of life, it's rhythm. And I don't mean whether you can bust a move (I'm sure you can). I'm talking about cortisol rhythm. Without a firm rhythm in place, we can feel the imbalance!
This proof of concept study suggests that mindfulness training shows promise for improving eating patterns and the CAR, which may reduce abdominal fat over time.
One of the many incredible characteristics of rhodiola is that it helps your body burn stored fat more efficiently as fuel. We all know that exercise — especially interval exercise like burst training — can increase fat loss, but if you want an extra edge, then consider taking rhodiola along with regularly exercising to accelerate your weight loss efforts.
Elaboration of optimal diet is one of the agents determining well-being, health and success. In this paper, we review the current knowledge on the effect of dietary components on level of cortisol.
Twenty years ago, the average person did not know what cortisol was. Today, cortisol is as familiar to most of us as other hormones such as insulin and testosterone. To say that the average person has a full and accurate understanding of cortisol’s nature and functions in the human body would be a stretch, however.
Whether or not you understand the ins-and-outs of cortisol, it's likely you've heard of it - it's more commonly known as 'the stress hormone' and it can have a big impact on both weight loss and gain.