You’ve probably heard of cortisol, the hormone that produces the “fight or flight” response when your body is under stress. Recently, cortisol has gotten a bad rap – the hormone is blamed for everything from weight gain to stroke risk.
However, the truth is that we need cortisol to live long, healthy lives. It just needs to be regulated. While too much stress is a bad thing for anyone, the effects of cortisol can help control blood pressure, weight gain and inflammation. Find out more about this misunderstood stress hormone in Springfield Missouri and how you can keep it regulated for long-term wellness.
Why Cortisol Matters
Stress is a natural reaction to life’s inconveniences. When we’re stuck in traffic jams or in the midst of disagreements with coworkers, our bodies naturally release a stress hormone called cortisol. Cortisol is a steroid hormone that is produced by the adrenal glands, which are located on top of each kidney.
Cortisol is meant to help your body respond to stress or danger. It can also help control blood sugar levels, regulate metabolism and inflammation and help with cognition. Cortisol serves several important functions in the body:
- Helps maintain blood pressure and cardiovascular function
- Helps slow the immune systems inflammatory response in times of stress
- Balances the effects of insulin in breaking down sugar for energy
- Regulates the metabolism of proteins, carbohydrates and fats for healthy blood sugar levels
However, too much cortisol can increase your body’s stress response, making it hard to manage life’s inconveniences. Extreme feelings of stress can be very hard on the body over time. Overall, we need cortisol to live healthy lives, but too much or too little of it can become a problem. That’s where adrenal insufficiency comes in.
Symptoms of Adrenal Insufficiency
Adrenal insufficiency occurs when the adrenal glands don’t make enough of certain hormones, including cortisol. Over time, adrenal insufficiency can worsen, leading to Addison’s Disease and other complications. There are several recognizable symptoms of adrenal insufficiency:
- Chronic fatigue and muscle weakness
- Loss of appetite and weight loss
- Digestive issues
- Low blood pressure
- Dizziness or fainting
- Mood changes, irritability and depression
- Cravings for salty foods
- Excessive sweating
These symptoms can come on gradually, but they can also be triggered by a stressful life event like moving, divorce or the death of a loved one. While adrenal fatigue can lead to long-term health problems, it can also be managed once it’s properly diagnosed.
Treating Low Cortisol Levels
Maintaining balanced cortisol levels is key to long-term health. If you suspect you may be suffering from adrenal fatigue, there are several supplements that can help balance cortisol levels. At Kare Health & Wellness, we’re big fans of Ortho Molecular supplements. Ortho Molecular offers two options for cortisol control. First, an adrenal supplement called Adren-ALL for patients with low cortisol levels:
- Improves the body’s stress resilience
- Supports healthy energy levels
- Improves physical and cognitive performance
- Helps maintain balanced cortisol levels
Adren-All contains a blend of key micronutrients, adaptogenic botanicals and adrenal concentrate specifically formulated to strengthen the body’s stress response and support healthy energy levels. Adren-All also provides targeted amounts of vitamins A and C, pantothenic acid and other B vitamins that are critical to adrenal gland function.
Maintaining Balanced Cortisol Levels
Adren-ALL is a great option for patients with low cortisol levels – but what about individuals with high cortisol levels? That’s where another Ortho Molecular product, Adapten-All, comes in. This supplement contains a unique blend of nutrients, herbs and adaptogens, all of which support normal adrenal function during periods of stress and fatigue.
Still not sure what to think about cortisol? Reach out to Kare Health & Wellness at 417-881-4994. Our goal is twofold: to improve your immediate health and prevent future health issues through functional medicine. We can coach you through selecting a cortisol support supplement while observing your body’s stress response so you can keep feeling great.