CORTISOL: Is it BAD or BENEFICIAL?
Cortisol is called The Stress Hormone. Does it mean it causes stress? If so, is it bad or beneficial?
These are some of questions that one would get when they are looking to find answers about Cortisol and its relationship to the stress and anxiety they experience.
Whether cortisol is bad or beneficial? This can be explained through two different situations: one, a supermom’s morning madness, and two, ER visit with complaint of racing heart.
SUPERMOMS and CORTISOL
For working moms with children, the morning hours are the most demanding and the busiest. She is getting her children ready for the school; get them to eat their breakfast; help them pack their school bags and lunch; rush them out of door before the school bus arrives; do her own hair and makeup and be ready to leave for work; and reach office in time. Her brain perceives the situation and understands the brevity of time; not only the children but she herself needs to be ready and out of home just in time. The hectic situation puts her mind and body in a state of alarm and overdrive. The physical and mental stress associated with this daily routine pushes her body to harvest that extra bit of energy and drive to get the morning chores done.
How do Supermoms manage to get by this morning madness? The answer is Cortisol. This Stress Hormone boosts the energy levels and increases blood pressure to cope up with rush and the speed.
ANXIETY and CORTISOL
In our earlier blog Anxiety Disorder we have talked about various types of anxieties, their signs and symptoms, and the cause of anxiety. The blog – Relationship between Cortisol, Stress, & Anxiety – described how cortisol increases blood pressure and heart rate.
Consider the scenario where a person with health anxiety has a sudden onset and starts to experience racing heart. The onset may or may not be due to a trigger. However, the very experience of his heart beating at a very high rate and blood pressures shooting, puts his mind and body into a state of shock. The extreme anxiety also results in various other symptoms pushing the person to seek medical help and rush to the emergency room. The ER visits are unnerving, and every ER visit brings up extreme emotions and underlying fear of something bad that may happen to him.
Why do people have such extreme experiences? The consistent abnormal levels of cortisol could be the culprit here.
THE BAD AND BENEFICIAL OF CORTISOL
To summarize and answer the question, healthy and normal levels of cortisol help us deal with stressful situations, whereas consistent abnormal levels of cortisol may result in serious health conditions. It is therefore important that normal levels of cortisol are maintained.
There are various ways to maintain cortisol levels, one of them being use of supplements like SanAshwa. We will be discussing different approaches to balance cortisol in our upcoming blogs…, so keep watching and subscribe if you have not already done so.