I would like to introduce you to your stress hormone, her name is Cortisol. She has a pretty name and has a very important job.
Cortisol works hard during times of fear or stress. Cortisol has some very cute kick names like “the death hormone” and “the fat storage hormone.” So cute right?
Now let’s talk about sweet cortisol and stress. Cortisol is just doing her job day after day and she does it really, really well. Cortisol is made in your adrenal glands. In today’s world we have a lot of stress and cortisol’s job is to secrete more cortisol in times of stress.
Examples Of Stress
- Family Issue
- Money Issues
- Overtraining the body
- Lack of sleep
- Poor Nutrition
- Worry, Fear, anxiety
- TV News
Guess what? If our bodies are always in a constant state of stress then sweet cortisol is going to keep pumping out more cortisol into your body. What does this mean? Well you know I am going to tell you right?
Effects Of Elevated Cortisol – The Stress Hormone
- Weight gain, especially in the abs and waistline
- Reduced growth hormone, testosterone, DHEA and estrogen
- Decreased bone density
- Decrease in muscle tissue
- Lowered immunity
- Lowers short-term memory and cognitive function
- Suppressed thyroid function
- Blood sugar imbalances
- Suppress DHEA, the “youth” hormone
Now lets talk blood sugar. We always strive to keep our blood sugar in balance by eating clean and natural foods and eating regularly through out the day. But when the body is stressed constantly, cortisol causes blood sugar to elevate, which can lead to an acidic condition.
When our blood is in a higher acidic state this can lead to diseases such as cancer, heart disease and diabetes. The body is all about balance and always wants to remain in balance. It is your job to keep the balance by eating healthy, reducing stress, exercising, and getting enough sleep.
Ways To Find Your Balance
Eating Hot and Healthy means eating foods as close to Mother nature as possible. Organic is always a great choice. Eat a balanced diet of healthy fats, proteins, fresh fruits and veggies. Packaged food and sugar are cortisol’s BFF and your worst enemy.
Exercising is a great stress reliever for the body it also can improve your mood, boost energy, help fight disease, promote better sleep and can just be fun.
Exercise can also be a stress on the body. Your workouts should invigorate your but not stress the body too much. Over training or over obsessing about working out also cause an imbalance in the body adding to the stress and cortisol level. Remember, balance is the key. Listen and tune in to your body and how you are feeling.
Sleep – This is a big one for most of us. We are up late watching TV or on the computer, which stimulates the brain. Caffeine that is consumed during the day is still in our blood stream up to 12 hours later. So just be aware that afternoon cup of coffee, soda or energy drink will still be with you when your head hits the pillow hours later.
Stress Reducing Suggestions
- Turn off the TV at night and read instead
- Try the essential oil Lavender, it is calming and relaxing
- When was the last time you soaked in the bathtub?
- Drink less caffeine
- Try meditation
- Listen to relaxing music
- Dim the lights before you go to bed to set the tone
- Talk with a friend
- Laugh, often and laugh hard
- Be grateful
- Eat a balanced diet
In conclusion, cortisol is only doing her job and you need to do your job and live in balance as much as possible. Read my article on managing your blood sugar levels.
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