If you live a life that would be considered high stress, have an “A” type personality, or are always in “high gear,” the body may naturally be cranking out too much cortisol. Now if cortisol production is high, then there could be some negative effects such as blood sugar dysregulation, weight gain (especially in the mid-section), a suppressed immune system (or always getting sick), digestive problems, and even the initial stages of heart disease.
Work stressors, family stressors, relationship stressors, social media stressors, email stressors, or even the stress of constantly being on the go and never getting a chance to sit back and decompress can all contribute to HPA axis dysfunction or chronically elevated cortisol levels.
We must understand that stress, regardless of the source, is the culprit behind so many of the dysfunctions we see today. Being in tune with your body and understanding your current stress levels will better enable a person to manage their stress within their lifestyle. By implementing the simplest of practices, such as getting enough sleep, choosing the best forms of exercise, deep breathing, laughing with friends, getting in some daily sunshine, and scheduling non-stressful leisure activities, you can begin to regain your health. All of the above tactics are easy to implement and would be a great place to start. However, as simple as many of these things sound, they cannot be taken for granted and must still be observed as essential from an implementation standpoint.
This should go without saying, but always, always, always start with nutrition and the diet as opposed to immediately jumping into supplementation. Eating nutrient dense foods as well as anti-inflammatory foods that come from the ground is the simplest and easiest place to start. To clarify further, anti-inflammatory foods are foods that are not processed and that almost always come directly from the earth. They have not been enriched or injected with hormones, and they have not been genetically modified.
Nutrition is more than just about losing or gaining weight.
It literally dictates your life experience.