The Impact High Cortisol Levels
Have on Your Body
It is important to be aware of the impact high cortisol levels have on your body as well as the relationship that exists between
cortisol and weight gain. Many people wonder how stress can affect health and their ability to lose weight and in this article
we will examine how cortisol can stop your weight-loss efforts in their tracks and more importantly, how you can reduce cortisol
and the impact high cortisol levels have on your body.
Stress is a normal part of daily life and no matter what the cause of stress, whether mental or physical, the body deals with it
in exactly the same way; it invokes the 'fight or flight' response. This means the central nervous system is stimulated and the
pituitary gland releases a hormone, adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH), which targets the adrenal glands and induces the secretion of cortisol.
Unfortunately though, high cortisol levels in the body have a negative impact on health and make it very difficult to lose weight. Furthermore,
if the cortisol levels remains high for a long period of time (chronic stress), it can have serious detrimental effects on your health. It can lead to 'burn-out', which is now commonly referred to as 'adrenal fatigue' or 'adrenal exhaustion'.
Even though cortisol does promote the breakdown of fats into fatty acids and glycerol, which may lead to greater fat burning, and acts as an
anti-inflammatory, which helps the body get rid of excess fluid, there are far more mechanisms through which cortisol actually stop weight loss
and promotes weight gain.
Here's How High Cortisol Levels
Stop Your Weight Loss Efforts:
Increases insulin resistance
Cortisol increases blood sugar levels by inhibiting the peripheral utilisation of
glucose by decreasing the translocation of glucose transporters, particularly GLUT4, to the cell membrane.
If cortisol levels remain high for some time it may significantly contribute to
insulin resistance and therefore, stop fat burning and
Increases the production of reverse T3
Thyroxine (T4) is normally converted into both T3 (tri-iodothyronine) and reverse T3. Under normal circumstances only about 40-45% of T4 gets converted into rT3.
However, if the body is deficient in certain nutrients or experiences high levels of stress, then more T4 gets converted into rT3 instead of T3.
BCN's Thyron contains the nutrients that are required for the conversion of T4 into T3
as well as 3 different adaptogens, including
Rhodiola, which helps to reduce the impact stress has on the body.
Causes greater muscle breakdown
Cortisol promotes 'gluconeogenesis', which is the creation of 'new' glucose, from the breakdown of body proteins. Most of the body proteins
come from muscle tissue, which means that your
metabolism will slow down, affecting your body's ability to lose weight.
Lowers testosterone production
Since cortisol and testosterone come from the same 'mother hormone', pregnenolone, if production of one hormone increases, production of the other hormone
results in a corresponding decrease. Therefore, an increase in cortisol levels in the body means a
reduction of testosterone in the body as well.
Testosterone may promote fat burning and weight loss through various mechanism so it is important to keep levels in the body as high as possible.
Increasing testosterone production in the body
may be achieved naturally by simply incorporating various strategies into your lifestyle.
May have a negative impact on sleep
High cortisol levels, which result from high stress levels, may have a negative impact on your ability to have deep, high-quality sleep.
When you sleep your body produces
growth hormone, which is the body's most
powerful lipolytic (fat-burning) hormone. Higher levels of anabolic hormones, like testosterone, also get produced, but the production of
both of these hormones will be suppressed when cortisol levels are high.
May lead to emotional eating
The relationship between cortisol and weight gain tends to result primarily from the impact stress has on 'emotional eating'. When some people are highly
stressed they tend to react by eating. This is because they are trying to change their biochemistry (internal body functioning). Some people may try to do this by
smoking, others by drinking alcohol and some by eating food. Of course, the foods people tend to eat when they are stressed are high in sugar and/ or fat and
this leads to weight gain.
There are many natural ways to deal with and overcome the effects of stress on the body and to reduce cortisol. Relaxation techniques, meditation and breathing exercises are all
Unfortunately though, when you're busy during the day you don't often have time to perform these exercises. This is where a quick and easy option like,
BCN's Rhodiola Advanced may be just what you need!
Rhodiola rosea is a natural stress-relieving herb that is mainly grown in high-altitude environments around Europe and Asia. It has been studied
extensively in Russia and Scandinavia for over 30 years.
It contains a number of biologically-active compounds that have a range of health benefits in the body, especially when it comes to dealing with stress effectively and in order to reduce cortisol.
If you are having trouble losing weight despite eating well, exercising and taking the necessary supplements, and are experiencing high levels of stress,
then BCN's Rhodiola Advanced may be useful in helping your body deal with the stress more effectively by lowering your body's cortisol levels and
therefore, may also assist your weight-loss efforts.
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