Have you heard of cortisol before? Or that if your levels are off it can make you feel “off”? We’re going to cover all the info you need to know about what cortisol is, how it can impact your daily lifestyle and how to lower your cortisol levels in natural ways.
What Is Cortisol?
For starters, this is a hormone that is naturally made in your body. To be more specific, it is a stress hormone that is released by the adrenal glands located on top of your kidneys and when it gets released, it goes straight into your bloodstream. This helps your body to alert you that there is stress (fight or flight response.) Think of it kind of as your body’s natural alarm clock for when you need to wake up at a certain time when something needs to be done. Imagine that you are confronted by a big bear, your fight or flight response will kick in to alert you there is danger and you need to either fight or flight! Lucky for us, this is our human way to help keep us safe and eliminate a threat. I mean, can you imagine being confronted by a big bear and not even feeling threatened because your body doesn’t release those hormones to alert you?! Pretty crazy huh? What an amazing body we have.
What Happens If Your Cortisol Levels Are Too High?
In a perfect world there would be absolutely no stress, however this world ain’t perfect and nobody is either. We get stressed on occasion and sometimes if that stress doesn’t go away it turns into chronic stress that results into high levels of cortisol levels. Some of the symptoms of high cortisol levels include:
- Weight gain
- Decreased bone density
- High blood pressure
- Decreased immunity
- Decreased mental performance
Now even though cortisol is known as the “stress hormone”, having the right amount of cortisol levels is actually good for you as it also contributes to many of the body’s processes that include:
- Insulin release
- Inflammation response
- Glucose metabolism
- Immune system function
- Regulation blood pressure
How To Lower Cortisol Levels
Exercising is a great way to release stress and get those feel-good hormones however when doing an intense workout it actually increases your cortisol levels short term but then lowers them at night. The key to exercising in order to keep those cortisol levels low during and after a workout is to do mild to moderate exercising. Going on long walks is a great opinion!
Learning how to lay back and relax may be difficult or easy for some people. Whichever the case may be, it is a skill that can be practiced to help quickly switch over into relaxation mode. Some of the relaxation techniques you can do that doesn’t require anything beside your body is:
- Breathing techniques such as the box breathing technique
- Mindfulness, mediating, being in the present moment
- Tai Chi
Other forms of relaxation include:
- Listening to relaxing music
- Getting a massage
Nutrition is an absolute key when it comes to help keep cortisol levels low. Avoid sugar, excess use of caffeine, high processed food and high amount of carbohydrate and eat more greens, clean proteins, healthy fats for example:
- Dark Chocolate
- Extra-virgin Oil
- Wild Salmon
- Raw Almonds
Also drink plenty water as well. Listen to your body and notice how it acts when you replace your food with happy healthy food!
Live, Laugh, Love
Sound pretty simple right? Just by having fun and being happy can help bring your cortisol levels down! Do more of that fun hobby you enjoy, hangout with those awesome people you love, dancing your heart away, laugh more, ...etc.
Natural Relaxation Supplementation
A great way that may help lower cortisol levels is by the great ancient traditional Ashwagandha root used for many years to help with a variety of ailments. Implementing this into your daily lifestyle may also assist with:
- Stress Relief Naturally
- Supporting Immune System
- Helps Balance Mood
- Supports Energy
Our Natural Ashwagandha capsules is from 100% Organic Ashwagandha root with added 100% Organic Black Pepper to help with better absorption.