You CAN Lower Cortisol Naturally

If you struggle with high cortisol, then you know it can touch just about every part of your health and life – from energy and sleep, to digestion, hormonal balance, weight management, emotional health, and much more.

It’s important to talk with your doctor and find the right balance for yourself, but often the most powerful step you can take is to cut down on the stress by instilling more peace into your life. This can be through emotional changes, like meditation, physical changes, like yoga, or even dietary changes, like removing toxins and stimulants and returning to whole, real foods.

Eat Real Foods

You’ve heard this one a lot if you’ve read anything else around here, but it rings true again. Poor diets full of processed foods, grains, sugars and chemicals put a tremendous stress on the body. For many people (some experts estimate close to 85%), grains can put a huge stress on the body as they can cause an immune reaction, damage the intestinal lining and lead to serious disease. Excess carbohydrates can cause this problem too, since if the sugars in carbohydrates cause increased insulin if they aren’t immediately used as fuel.

For a stress-reducing, adrenal nourishing diet, focus on getting your nutrients from fresh, real foods in as close to their natural source as possible. Drink a lot of water and avoid the caffeine.

Learn to Say No

Another logical step that we are all bad at (me especially). I’m not just talking about saying no in a parenting sense (though that could be good too… I recommend “No, you many not eat that candy bar/happy meal/ding dong/fill in the blank”). Many of us have a commitment list as long as our arms, and the stress level to prove it. It is wonderful to help out whenever we can, but make sure you make yourself a priority and realistically evaluate what you can handle while keeping stress low and quality family time high. (Confession: I am really bad at this step myself!).

Use Your Mind, and then Don’t

Many people are too tired after an exhausting day to engage their minds, and prefer to “relax” by watching TV or some other form of electronic distraction. There are some theories about the sleep disturbing ability of the blue light emitted by these electronics, but all the time spent watching TV is time that our minds are actively disengaged. Studies repeatedly show that people who actively use their minds in activities like reading, puzzles, or learning languages/new hobbies are happier and less stressed. Consider using your valuable time for an activity that improves your mind and reduces stress.

On the flip side of this coin, most people also don’t turn their minds off enough. Let your “relax” mean “relax” and don’t relax by watching TV or doing another activity that causes activity without engaging the mind. Take time to pray or meditate and try to focus on the positive aspects of your life and the things you are grateful for.
– via Wellness Mama®

How One Woman Is Battling Cortisol At Home

Would it surprise you to know that adrenal fatigue and out-of-control cortisol is incredibly common? We are all stressed out and our health is suffering because of it. Below are the three main changes that one woman made when stress was taking a toll on her body by ruining her thyroid function and making her unable to sleep.

This cocktail of changes – based on instruction from an expert – worked for her, but each body and each life is unique, so be sure to find the right balance for yourself.

Wean from Caffeine

“Wean” is her word not mine. I say reduce. My love of tea is well known. Perhaps as a crutch (and to stay warm in this abnormally cold winter) I’ve been drinking too much and too late in the day. I’ve cut back and tried to keep my caffeine consumption before noon.

Yoga

I’ve done yoga in the past but not with any regularity. It is harder for me but this requires me to be more present. I have to focus on my breathing and what my body is doing. This requires me to let go of other thoughts and stay in the moment. This is a very good thing for someone with constant “monkey mind” chatter. I’ve also started practicing a yoga pose known as Legs Up the Wall before bedtime.

Practice Forgiveness and Gratitude

I’ve been known to hold a grudge. During meditation time I am working on letting go.  Also each night before bed, my husband and I name two things we are grateful for. Instead of waiting till the last minute to figure out what I am grateful for, I am trying to collect grateful moments through out the day.
– via Thrive Personal Fitness

Do you struggle with high stress – and high cortisol?