If you find yourself overly tired, stressed or even notice unusual weight gain, you may need to lower cortisol levels in your body.
Cortisol, also known as the primary ‘stress hormone’, that our body produces under any sort of pressure, when well-balanced helps to keep us awake, motivated and responsive to the environment.
However, if the levels of cortisol go circulating too high, they can cause many unwanted and even dangerous symptoms and contribute to long-term problems. For example, chronic stress, weight gain, sleep disorders, fertility problems, anxiety, hormonal imbalances, etc.
Luckily, there are many efficient natural ways to lower cortisol levels and keep them in check.
Embrace these 6 daily habits to lower cortisol levels in your body
1- Whole foods diet
Almost every health problem can be at least partially resolved with the right, healthy diet. High cortisol levels are not an exception. An anti-inflammatory diet that is low in processed foods and rich in fiber, essential nutrients and antioxidants is key to keep the hormones in balance. Also to maintain a healthy weight, help you sleep better at night and boost your energy during the day.
To lower cortisol levels, stick to a diet that avoids sugary and refined packaged foods, trans fats, caffeine and alcohol. Instead, aim to consume a lot of fresh fruits and vegetables, fish, eggs, nuts and seeds, coconut and olive oil. Include also probiotic foods, like yogurt and kefir.
2- Reduce stress
Chronic stress is today linked to about every possible health problem. It has the power to increase your appetite, sleep-related problems, breathing, your heart rate, muscle tension and pain. This is why it is crucial to reduce the sources of stress in your everyday life, and manage it in every way possible. Meditation, acupuncture, deep breathing exercises, spending time in nature are all recognized as natural stress relievers.
3- Regular exercise
Physical activity is one of the best ways of managing stress, and if done on a regular basis (from 30 to 60 minutes most days of the week), it can help balance your hormones, metabolic functions and improve your sleeping routine.
4- Adaptogenic herbs
Adaptogenic herbs (ginseng, holy basil, reishi, cordyceps, ashwagandha, astragalus, rhodiola, licorice root) help lower cortisol levels naturally by balancing hormones, blood pressure and sugar levels, and reducing inflammation.
5- Essential oils
Lavander, frankincense, bergamot and myrrh all contain ingredients that naturally lower cortisol levels, improve immunity, reduce inflammation and help with digestive functions and sleep.
6- Get enough sleep
Getting the right amount of sleep helps control the production of cortisol, however, at the same time, high cortisol levels makes it hard to rest. Use the steps listed above to make it easier for yourself to rest enough, aiming to get about seven to nine hours per night.