How Cortisol Increases Damage to Your Heart & How to Fix It

Cortisol Increases Damage To the Heart

Your body is hard-wired to react to stress in ways meant to protect you against threats from predators and other invaders. Such threats are rare today because of development and technology, but that doesn't mean that life is completely stress-free.

Cortisol is maybe more important than we initially thought.

In today's fast-paced environment, you most certainly will face multiple demands each day, such as taking on a huge workload, paying the bills and taking care of your family.

Your body treats these so-called minor hassles as threats.

As a result, you may feel as if you're constantly under attack. But you can fight back and control those feelings. You don't have to let stress control your life.

cortisol deficiency

The natural stress response and your body

Imagine you are walking through the woods. All of the sudden, you look down and see a snake. In that moment, your hypothalamus, a tiny area in your brain's base, sets off an alarm system in your body.

Even if that "snake" ended up being a stick.

Through a combination of nerve and hormonal signals, this system stimulates your adrenal glands, located atop your kidneys, to release a surge of hormones.

Some of these hormones include adrenaline and cortisol.

Adrenaline spikes your heart rate, raises your blood pressure and boosts energy supplies. Cortisol, the primary stress hormone, increases sugars (glucose) in the bloodstream and enhances your brain's use of glucose.

It increases the availability of materials that repair tissues.

Cortisol also stops or slows down functions that would be nonessential or detrimental in a fight-or-flight situation.

It decreases immune system responses and suppresses the digestive system, the reproductive system, and growth processes. Your body's natural alarm system also communicates with the brain regions that control mood, motivation, and fear.

What happens when you're stuck in stress mode?

The body's stress-response system is typically self-limiting. Once a threat has passed, hormone levels should return to normal. As adrenaline and cortisol levels drop, your heart rate and blood pressure are supposed to return to baseline levels, and other systems continue their regularly scheduled activities.

But when stressors are always present and you constantly feel under attack or stressed with life, that fight-or-flight reaction stays turned on.

The long-term activation of the stress-response system is damaging to the body.

Overexposure to cortisol and other stress hormones that follow can disrupt almost all your body's processes. This puts you at increased risk of many health problems, including:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Digestive issues
  • Headaches
  • Heart disease
  • Sleep problems
  • Weight gain
  • Memory loss
  • Concentration difficulty

That's why it's so important to learn healthy ways to cope with your life stressors and know how to test for Cortisol levels.

Why is it important to develop a baseline

Developing and understanding where you are with your cortisol levels can help you create a plan of action to make dramatic changes in your life.

Cortisol ages your organs faster and creates potential burnout.

You can start by trying our Executive Test to get started on testing for Cortisol levels.

The benefits of tracking your levels over time can help you understand the potential damage caused and how to avoid it.

When you are able to monitor your blood on at even a quarterly basis, you can objectively observe the changes in yourself when you've made positive lifestyle shifts.

Take the time to regain control of your health and create your own action steps to be a better and healthier version of yourself.

The first step is the hardest.

But, its only a couple clicks away. Set yourself up for success by visiting and simply selecting a package that works for your personal needs.

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