The 1 hormone that might be sabotaging your weight loss and health journey.
We know that Cortisol is known as the stress hormone. Cortisol plays an important role in the body’s stress response, and it is involved in a variety of physiological processes. In the right amounts, cortisol can have several beneficial effects on the body, including: regulating blood sugar levels, reducing inflammation, promoting alertness and energy and supporting immune function.
Did you know that Cortisol has a daily rhythm? It should peak about 30-45 minutes after waking up.
This is in response to morning light, which is why it’s so important to get sunlight first thing which can help regulate your energy & mood for the day.Cortisol should be lowest in the evening, when Melatonin is highest. This helps support falling asleep and staying asleep through the night.
Here are a few tell- tale signs to know if your Cortisol levels are imbalanced:
– Feel wired but tired at night
– You’re burnt out
– Feel stressed constantly
– Are in fight/flight mode
– Experience chronic anxiety
– Fatigue or low energy
– Cravings sugar or salty carbs
– Low libido
– Difficulty waking up in the morning
– Waking up in the middle of the night
If cortisol levels remain imbalanced for a long period of time, it can have several negative effects on the body. Here are three things that can be affected:
- Immune system function: Cortisol is known to have anti-inflammatory properties. However, if cortisol levels are chronically elevated or depressed, it can weaken the immune system, making it more difficult for the body to fight off infections and illnesses.
- Mood and cognitive function: High cortisol levels can lead to anxiety, depression, and mood swings, while low cortisol levels can cause fatigue, brain fog, and difficulty concentrating. This is because cortisol plays a key role in regulating mood and cognitive function.
- Metabolism and weight management: Cortisol can also affect metabolism and weight management. High cortisol levels can increase appetite and lead to weight gain, especially in the abdominal area. In contrast, low cortisol levels can slow down metabolism, making it more difficult to lose weight. This can lead to a variety of health problems, including obesity, diabetes, and cardiovascular disease.
You might feel overwhelmed just knowing this and might wonder what you can do about it.
Here are some ways to balance cortisol:
- Adaptogens such as Ashwagangha, tulsi, gotu kalu, Brahmi
- Setting Boundaries/Taking Time off
- Non Sleep Deep Rest
- Restorative Movement
- Support Your Circadian Rhythms – morning and evening sun, no screens after dark, minimal light sources after dark
Do give these a shot and try at least 2 of these on a daily basis.