Tuesday, September 26, 2023

How To Lower Cortisol Fast

What Causes High Cortisol Levels

How To Lower Cortisol Levels Naturally?

Many things can cause high cortisol levels, including:

  • physical and emotional stress your body can’t gauge the seriousness of a stressful situation, so something simple like a traffic jam can kick-start your stress response system, as can being ill with a cold
  • medication certain medications like corticosteroids and oral contraceptives might increase your cortisol levels
  • oestrogen high oestrogen levels in women, for example, in pregnancy, is linked to raised cortisol levels
  • an adrenal gland tumour your adrenal glands produce cortisol, so any issues with them can affect your cortisol levels
  • a pituitary gland issue an overactive pituitary gland stimulates your adrenal glands to make too much cortisol
  • malnutrition for example, if you suffer from an eating disorder

Conditions like depression, diabetes, PCOS, and alcoholism are also linked to high cortisol levels.

How To Lower Cortisol Levels Naturally 6 Steps

You can greatly help manage cortisol levels and regain your health by changing your diet, exercise routine, sleep and stress levels. Assuming you havent been diagnosed with Cushings disease by your doctor, here are steps you can take to help lower high cortisol levels naturally:

1. Switch to a Whole Foods, Anti-inflammatory Diet

Poorly managed blood sugar levels and high levels of inflammation can contribute to high cortisol levels and other hormonal imbalances. Following an anti-inflammatory diet low in processed foods and high in antioxidants, fiber and essential nutrients is key to balancing hormones, controlling your cravings and getting you on the right track. These same strategies can also help with adrenal support, allowing you to reach and maintain a healthy weight, boosting energy during the day and helping you sleep better at night.

Some of the most significant dietary contributors to inflammation and high cortisol levels include:

  • high-sugar, high-glycemic diet
  • consuming high amounts of refined and trans fats
  • drinking too much caffeine and alcohol
  • experiencing insufficient intake of micronutrients and antioxidants
  • not consuming enough fiber
  • not consuming enough healthy fats or protein

2. Reduce and Manage Stress

Fortunately, stress management is something you can begin without too much trouble. The natural stress relievers listed below are proven to help lower cortisol and decrease the negative impact stress has on your health:

3. Exercise Regularly

Cortisol Constricts Your Blood Vessels

While we dont often think of them from a scientific standpoint, your average erection has several main ingredients.

Among the most important is blood.

You see, in order to stiffen and enlarge, the capillaries in your member need a fresh supply of oxygen-rich blood.

The easier this flows to and fro inside your veins, the better the results.

Over time, this obstruction can become permanent and further worsened by high levels of gunk in your veins.

Without the ability to vasodilate effectively, the quality of your erections will only worsen.

Read Also: Will Taking Estrogen Reduce Belly Fat

What Are The Signs Of High Cortisol

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1st Aug 2022 4 min read

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Cortisol is a stress hormone thats produced by your body. Its essential for your health, but too much cortisol can cause problems, ranging from anxiety to diabetes. When high cortisol causes symptoms and conditions, its known as Cushings syndrome. Here’s how to spot the signs of high cortisol, how to test your levels, and what you can do to lower them.

What Is Adrenal Fatigue Or Adrenal Insufficiency

How To Reduce Cortisol  15 Proven Ways To Lower It Immediately ...

Adrenal fatigue symptoms are described as experiencing fatigue even after regular, healthy amounts of sleep, feeling blue and having physical cravings for salty foods or unhealthy snacks.

The theory behind this syndrome is that the adrenal glands fail to produce enough cortisol because of stress or chronic illnesses like the flu, pneumonia and bronchitis. There is some controversy around the phrase adrenal fatigue, which was created in 1998 by a doctor that practices alternative medicine, referred to as a naturopath.

Despite the debate around adrenal fatigue, adrenal insufficiency is a medically recognized diagnosis. Here, the adrenal glands do not function normally or the pituitary glands fail to signal the adrenal glands that cortisol production is needed.

It is a relatively rare condition diagnosed by endocrinologists doctors specializing in the production of hormones.

Regardless of the terminology, the fact remains that too little cortisol can be problematic, as is having too much cortisol in the body.

Read Also: What Helps Lower Cortisol Levels

How To Lower Cortisol: Decrease Your Stress Levels And Lose Weight

Stress is part and parcel of everyday life and something that we must all contend with, whether we like it or not. Elevated stress levels lead to the production of the stress hormone cortisol. Despite cortisol being an essential hormone that helps with many important functions in the body, chronically increased levels of it can lead to many undesirable symptoms in the body.

Figuring out how to lower stress and cortisol is not only good for your overall health, but it is also quite essential for your mental health too. If you have been unsuccessfully trying to get rid of all the side effects of cortisol, read on to find simple but effective ways of doing this.

Listen To Music And Dance

Music is actually healing and can have a calming effect on the brain.

Numerous studies show that music can relax you, especially before a stressful event, by significantly lowering stress hormones. It can also reduce the spike in cortisol during the stressful situation .

Music can be even more relaxing when combined with non-strenuous dancing.

Regular dancing has also been shown to greatly decrease cortisol levels .

The book The Tapping Solution: A Revolutionary System for Stress-Free Living goes in more depth about the practice.

Lastly, deep breathing exercises can help you manage your stress hormone levels.

Diaphragmatic breathing consciously breathing from your diaphragm has been shown to encourage the bodys natural relaxation response and reduce cortisol .

I use the EmWave2 device every day to reduce stress and make sure Im breathing optimally. I wrote about it before here.

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Why Are High Cortisol Levels Bad

The hypothalamus is the part of the brain that helps regulate the amount of cortisol in our system. It can increase cortisol levels when needed and block excess amounts when its unnecessary.

Too much cortisol can be the result of chronic or toxic stress, which can lead to headaches, tension, difficulty concentrating mood swings and even mental health issues like depression and anxiety.

The symptoms from too much cortisol like these can unconsciously drive people to self-medicate with drugs and alcohol.

High cortisol levels may also be caused by an adverse reaction to certain medications or from an underlying health condition.

Whatever the case, chronically high cortisol levels are unhealthy and can lead to a number of unwanted symptoms, like some of the following:

  • High blood pressure
  • Rapid weight gain
  • Impaired cognitive abilities and rapid mood swings
  • Promote other illnesses, such as type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis and create a greater risk of developing infections

Its easy to see why people might want to find ways to lower cortisol levels naturally.

Maintaining A Good Bedtime Routine

14 ways to REDUCE CORTISOL LEVELS FAST! | natural stress relief (without meditation!!)

A good bedtime routine can be a useful tool for getting longer and higher-quality sleep. This may involve a combination of relaxing activities that help a person unwind, such as:

  • bathing or showering
  • reading a book or audiobook

People should get into the habit of turning off all screens and relaxing before heading to bed. For example, it may help to turn off phones and any other potential distractions.

Recommended Reading: How To Check Hormone Levels

Cortisol Causes Hormonal Chaos

We started this section by talking about how some hormones interact with others.

Well, as it turns out, cortisol might be the granddaddy of all hormonal agitators.

Take this study from 2004, for example. It explores the various connections between gonadal and stress hormones with schizophrenia diagnosis.

Of course, we already talked about the fact that prolonged cortisol exposure can cause depression and anxiety, both of which have potent sexual side effects.

But the mood disorders dont stop there.

Indeed, stress can actually upset the way you interact with your partner, hindering pair-bonding while making you hostile and detached. Lets put it this way: have you ever been stressed out of your mind, depressed, and anxious? If so, how many surprise erections did you experience? Exactly.

Try Ashwagandha Or Phosphatidylserine

Next, Id suggest starting with either the traditional Ayurvedic remedy ashwagandha or phosphatidylserine, depending on which symptoms of stress youre experiencing.

Ashwagandha excels at stress reduction and decreases cortisol significantly more than many other supplements.

Its a good choice if you have anxiety, insomnia, or depression caused by stress.

Phosphatidylserine is another proven cortisol reducer.

Its also an excellent brain supplement that improves memory and protects against mental decline, while enhancing physical performance.

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When Not To Lower Your Bodys Cortisol Reserves

High cortisol levels arenât necessarily ruinous for you. As you can see from the previous section, a pre-dawn cortisol hike coincides with the usual hours for waking up. Without the alertness-boosting effects of this hormone, it becomes that much more difficult to push through your morning sleep inertia and feel like youâve had a full night of invigorating sleep.

Cortisol is also vital to your overall health throughout the day as it helps:

  • Mediate your stress response
  • Regulate your metabolism rate for energy production
  • Fight inflammation to boost your bodyâs rest-and-repair mechanism
  • Develop and maintain a functioning immune system

On a medical note, too-low cortisol levels lead to a health issue known as Addisonâs disease. Itâs a manifestation of adrenal gland disorder commonly accompanied by symptoms like low blood pressure and low blood sugar levels.

Satisfy Your Core Nutritional Needs First

Pin on cortisol cutting

Having a nutritional deficiency is a physical stressor, so its imperative that you meet your daily requirements of vitamins, minerals, and particularly, essential fatty acids.

Stress is a notorious nutrient drain and virtually everyone under stress could benefit from a high-quality multivitamin-mineral supplement and an omega-3 supplement in the form of fish oil or krill oil.

Most multivitamin supplements are relatively low in magnesium, so consider taking additional magnesium separately.

Magnesium is extremely important for combating stress and its estimated that 75% of us have an inadequate intake.

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Why Reducing Your Cortisol Level Is Important

Its one thing when your cortisol surges over the course of an hour or soas the result, say, of a near miss on the roadway or from trying to stop a child from running into traffic here and there, its no big deal.

Problems begin when stress is constant everyday, and your sympathetic nervous system is always on. I call this being in a state of sympathetic overdrive.

Once you go into the overdrive state, the stress-related changes become inflammatory and can lead to arterial damage, atherosclerosis, and even heart attacks. In fact, a study published in the journal Stress reported that men who have heart attacks are likely to have elevated cortisol levels during the three months prior to their event.

Of course, heart disease isnt the only health concern associated with higher cortisol levels. The hormone has also been linked with metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes, insomnia, suppressed immune function, weight gain and depression.

Other Ways To Relieve Stress

Your diet plays an important role in managing stress symptoms, but it’s only one piece of the puzzle. “The main thing in lowering stress is working on daily habits to change our body’s response to stressors around us,” says Moday. “This way you can blunt the release of cortisol over time regardless of the situation.” Here are some techniques that can help:

Recommended Reading: Can High Cortisol Cause Weight Gain

Engage In Creative Projects

Engaging in creative pursuits such as playing a musical instrument, getting involved in a community performance, or creating visual art can also be helpful in lowering cortisol levels.

Kaimal et al. found that engaging in a painting project for 45 minutes dropped cortisol levels drastically in a group of 39 adults participating in art therapy.

How To Lower Cortisol By Cutting Out Stressors


Not everything in our lives is within our control, but there are many things we can do to make our own lives better. Wherever you can, try to make your life easier by cutting out stressors and setting boundaries. For example, you can set boundaries with demanding family members, ask your friend or significant other to help you out, or cancel plans that you arent excited about. Show yourself kindness wherever you can, and it will lower the number of encounters you have with situations that could trigger your cortisol response.

Read more:

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How To Lower Cortisol Levels Fast Naturally

If you have been experiencing any of the above high cortisol symptoms and are wondering how to lower cortisol levels fast, then one of the first things that you will have to do is to make positive changes to your lifestyle. Since the world was struck by the pandemic in 2020, a lot of things have changed and more people have reported feeling extra stressed, extra weight gain, mental health issues and more.

In fact, according to the Americans Psychological Association, nearly 1 in 4 adults has reported drinking more alcohol to cope with their stress during the coronavirus pandemic. The article goes on to further point out that three in four adults have reported experiencing high stress levels . These alarming findings were localized in the United States so one can only imagine how the rest of the world has been fairing.

If you too have been feeling like your stress levels are getting out of hand and are worried about what these extra stress hormones might be doing to your body, here are some simple tips on how to lower cortisol levels by making changes to your lifestyle.

What Are The Symptoms Of High Cortisol Levels

Regular and prolonged exposure to high cortisol levels can wreak havoc on your body. Over time this can cause Cushings syndrome. Some of the most common signs of high cortisol levels include:

  • weight gain particularly around your stomach, upper back, and face
  • bruising and slow wound healing
  • difficulty concentrating

Over time, high cortisol can put you at risk of heart disease, osteoporosis, diabetes, and poor mental health.

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Some Of The Signs Of High Cortisol Levels Can Include:

  • Tension headaches, chronic fatigue, and struggling to recover from physical activity
  • Mood problems, such as irritability, depression, or anxiety
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Digestive issues, including constipation, diarrhea, or bloating
  • Weight gain, particularly in the abdomen, face, and chest
  • Diminished libido
  • High blood pressure

In rare cases, high cortisol can be related to underlying health issues like Cushings Disease. So, its important to see a physician if unusually high levels of cortisol are indicated from blood, urine, or saliva samples.

Knowing how to naturally lower cortisol levels is extremely useful for improving overall wellbeing and living a happier life.

Exercise But Avoid Overdoing It

How To Reduce Cortisol  15 Proven Ways To Lower It Immediately! Page 2 ...

There is a delicate balance between exercise and cortisol levels. Moderate or vigorous exercise regularly and increasing daily movement can help to improve emotional resilience which can, in turn, reduce cortisol levels .However, engaging in repeated bouts of high-intensity activity with little to no recovery time in between can have the opposite effect and raise cortisol levels. While exercise is a powerful tool in stress management, it is important to prioritize recovery as well .

Read Also: Do Hormones Make You Gain Weight

Practice Good Sleep Hygiene

Sleep hygiene is something of an odd term, but it means going to bed and waking up at a regular and consistent time each day, even on the weekends. The magic number for most people is to get 7 to 9 hours of restful slumber on a nightly basis.

This will help the bodys natural sleep and wake cycles, in which cortisol plays a big role. Good sleep habits will actually improve the amount of restful, regenerative sleep a person needs by naturally balancing cortisol levels.

Chew Your Food Slowly

Remember how your mom told you to slow down at the dinner table as a child? There was a scientific basis for her wisdom. A Tokyo Dental College study looked at the effects of slow chewing vs. fast chewing on salivary cortisol and found that chewing food quickly increases stress . Chewing slowly and mindfully allows the stomach to send a signal to the brain that it’s full.

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Chronic Stress: Why High Cortisol Is Bad

High levels of cortisol can predispose us to overreact to minor stressors in our lives, like traffic jams or arguments with loved ones, and can also increase anxiety symptoms. Additionally, this state of chronic stress can be associated with many physical issues such as:

  • Undereating or overeating

If you observe these symptoms in yourself, it might be a sign that you have high cortisol. If this is the case, contact your doctor. Additionally, you can try some of the methods below to lower your cortisol fast.

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