• Delilma Nutrition

Are your Cortisol levels too high?

Cortisol is the known "stress hormone" made in the adrenal glands. When cortisol levels are too high it can be deceiving as it may make you think you are being ultra-productive but at the same time may be robbing you of much-needed sleep, making you feel wired. Some of the symptoms associated with women's health when our cortisol is too high can be subtle and if not addressed can lead to further issues.

Let's explore some of the symptoms women can experience when their cortisol levels are high:

  • Disrupted digestion, mental function, and metabolism

  • Weakened ability to fight infection

  • Low sex drive

  • Weight gain (especially around the belly)

  • Irritable

  • Trouble sleeping

  • Anxious

  • Depressed

  • Cravings for salt or sugar

  • Heavy, painful, or otherwise difficult periods

  • PMS

If you have experienced any of the symptoms mentioned above and think it is due to elevated cortisol levels you can try to lower them naturally. To do this try doing one or more of the following:

  • Go to bed each night at the same time, wake up at the same time, and get out in the sunshine. This creates a good circadian rhythm, which optimises your hormone balance naturally

  • Limit alcohol, you might think it relaxes you, but alcohol actually increases cortisol

  • Despite your craving for these things avoid caffeine, sugar, and processed food

  • Get moving, but be aware that running hard and over training without enough rest can increase cortisol. The constant demand for glucose in the muscles can create a form of chronic stress. You may find yoga, Pilates, or walking in nature helps relax your mind while exercising your body

  • Get a monthly massage to reduce stress and relax muscles

  • Try meditation to slow your mind down, reduce anxiety, and lower cortisol levels

#educatingwomenonhealthandwellbeing #stressawarenessmonth22

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