So what is "Cortisol" and why is it so important???
Well . . . "Cortisol" is a hormone produced by the adrenal glands. It's best known as the "stress hormone" because it's released when the body senses stress. And like all other hormones . . . it's vital to the body's survival.
So what is "Cortisol's" main purpose???
Well . . . it's a steroid hormone that regulates a ride range of vital processes throughout the body . . . including "metabolism" and the "immune system" responses.
It increases sugars (glucose) in the bloodstream, enhancing the brain's use of glucose and increases the availability of substances that "repair tissues".
And when working correctly . . . it helps to control "blood sugar levels", "regulates metabolism", reduces "inflammation" and controls blood pressure.
So you ask . . . how can this hormone called "cortisol" be bad for us then???
And how can it affect the body's weight negatively???
Well . . . as we've spoken in many other Health tips . . . when the "lectins" we consume in the food we eat "interfere" with the body's communication between hormones . . . specially "cortisol" . . .
"Cortisol" levels elevate and can keep you awake at night, affect the ability of the fasting function of the Leptin hormone and increases the Ghrelin hormone, which makes you want to eat all the time.
And when "cortisol" levels get chronically elevated . . . it leads to overeating and weight gain.
Too much "cortisol" can also produce some of the signs of Cushing syndrome . . . a fatty hump between the shoulders, a rounded face, and pink or purple stretch marks on the skin. Cushing syndrome can also result in high blood pressure, bone loss and type 2 diabetes. It can cause rapid weight gain, skin that bruises easily and muscle weakness.
You see . . . under stressful conditions (and that seems to be where everyone is nowadays), "cortisol" provides the body with glucose by tapping into protein stored in the liver. But . . . when "cortisol" is elevated over a long period of time consistently . . . it produces "glucose" all the time, which leads to consistent elevated blood sugar levels.
And with this . . . some signs are headaches, brain fog or concentration issues, high blood pressure and extreme fatigue that a good night sleep won't cure.
Okay . . . so now we know that stress and lectins are a big factor as to how elevated our "cortisol" hormone can become.
But . . . the biggest offender to an overactive "cortisol" hormone would be . . . "SUGAR"
You see . . . the sugar we consume in this Western diet we love so much . . . triggers a release off "cortisol". And consuming sugar everyday . . . always keeps this hormone high, therefore causing weight gain.
So now you ask . . . how do we control this hormone???
Well first . . . eliminate certain "lectin" foods like "Nightshades" from the diet if we have a compromised immune system and our "good" bacteria is depleted. Next . . . eliminate the "bad" "simple" carbohydrates (refined sugars) from the body. And avoid caffeine, alcohol and processed food,
Another factor to controlling our "cortisol" hormone is . . .
If you eat right to fuel the body and make sure you consume carbohydrates and protein after exercising . . . it will decrease the cortisol response.
But the question is . . . what kind of exercise is best and how much???
Okay . . . so let's better understand . . . "intense" exercising in itself "raises" this hormone . . . we've spoken of this before . . . whereas . . . light weight training and rebounding are the best for losing weight and keeping the "cortisol" hormone levels in check.
You see . . . exercising for more than 60 minutes . . . even at a low intensity . . . will burn up the body's "glycogen" stores and "simulate cortisol" release.
And if your "cortisol" is already out of control . . . due to stress and sugar . . . exercising for longer than 60 minutes is going to raise the "cortisol" levels even more and now your eating habits will be out of control. Ultimately . . . causing more weight issues.
So reducing lectins and sugar intake . . . and exercising less that 60 minutes with low intensity movement . . . will control the "cortisol" hormone so the body can lose weight efficiently.
Next we'll be talking about food and my "personal meal plan" for weight loss.
As always, feel free to contact me here