Cortisol…how do we get it lower?
Cortisol, also known as the “stress hormone” is vitally important to the overall health and wellbeing of our bodies. If our cortisol levels aren’t as they should be, we may feel overwhelmed and run down in many aspects of our lives. People who live high-stress lifestyles are susceptible to consistently elevated cortisol levels which can lead to conditions like adrenal fatigue or Cushing’s Syndrome.
What is cortisol?
Cortisol is a hormone associated with the adrenal glands. These glands are tiny little pea-sized things that sit on top of our kidneys. They may be small, but if we force them to produce high levels of cortisol for a long period of time, our adrenal glands can do a lot of damage.
They produce cortisol when we are in a position where our fight or flight instincts are activated. For example, in high-pressure situations like important work meetings or staying up all night trying to finish a report before a deadline, cortisol is being produced on a large scale. If you think about it, most people these days do lead super intense lifestyles that involve a lot of stressful situations.
How does cortisol work?
Once cortisol is released by the adrenal glands, it makes its way around the body via our bloodstream. Almost every one of our cells is receptive to cortisol. Because of this they welcome it with open arms and allow it to affect them in many different ways.
Cortisol has been known for its involvement in:
- Controlling the body’s blood sugar,
- Regulating metabolism,
- Acting as an anti-inflammatory,
- Influencing memory formation,
- Controlling the salt and water balance in our bodies,
- Helping foetal development, and
- Influencing blood pressure.
When we’re constantly in high-pressure or high-stress situations, cortisol is consistently produced. This is because our body is telling our adrenal glands that we need more and more of that good, good cortisol to help us cope. It’s up to us to try and regulate high cortisol levels to avoid adverse side effects.
How to lower cortisol levels fast
There are a few ways to lower your cortisol levels fast. Aiming to achieve a more regular sleep schedule and working to reduce the amount of stress in your lifestyle is a very good start. We do understand that some of us can’t afford to slow down the pace. For those of us who aren’t willing to change our hectic lifestyle, there are supplements that can help support the adrenal glands and regulate cortisol levels in the body. Check out our list below.
1. Gutright by ATP Science
Research has shown that gut health plays a huge factor in our body’s ability to function. Our adrenal glands are no exception. Gutright by ATP Science contains modbiotics, a chemical found in vegetables, spices, fruits, nuts and other natural foods. Modbiotics are a winning combination of polyphenols, polysaccharides, glucans and lectins that help improve gut imbalance, in turn, improving overall health. This may be just what you need to help counter adrenal fatigue symptoms.
2. Adrenal RX by ATP Science
Adrenal RX is one of those supplements that knows its job and does it well. It’s perfectly formulated to support brain and adrenal function with high-quality, clinically researched herbs and ingredients. For those of us with a heavily active lifestyle or a high-stress job, this is a great way of helping the adrenal glands keep up.
3. Alpha Apex ARES by ATP Science
Adrenal fatigue in men is sometimes mistaken for low testosterone because abnormal cortisol levels in the body can cause testosterone levels to drop. If you’re a male diagnosed with adrenal fatigue, this testosterone supplement may be just what you need to get back to feeling at the top of your game again.
If you think you may be suffering from high cortisol levels, check in with your medical practitioner for advice. If they suggest supplements as a means of managing symptoms, you know where to find us!
While we’re on the topic of cortisol, it might be worth checking out our article on adrenal fatigue and how to identify and treat its symptoms.