Are you tired, moody and struggling to lose weight?
Do you ever wake up in the morning and think why am I so tired? I just slept for 10 hours and I feel like it was for 5 minutes! It’s 10 am and you finally feel like your waking up after your third coffee. Then lunchtime rolls around and you’re really craving carbs. But if you eat carbs it will go straight to your bum and you are already struggling to lose weight. By 2 pm you feel like you could take a nap. Seriously is this day ever going to end, you are so tired and moody you cant tolerate your co-workers anymore! You drag yourself to do some exercise, eat dinner and try and stop yourself from eating chocolate afterward. Then by the time 9 pm comes around you get your second wind and feel better than you have all day!
If you were nodding your head while reading that then you possibly have a cortisol imbalance. Cortisol is your main stress hormone. It is produced by the adrenal glands which are located on top of each kidney. Cortisol helps to convert protein, fat, and carbohydrates into energy, increases blood sugar levels, reduce inflammation and regulate your blood pressure.
Cortisol levels should be at their highest in the morning, helping to wake you up and give you energy for the day to come. Before gradually declining throughout the day and getting to its lowest levels at night time allowing us to fall asleep. When you have a cortisol imbalance it is low when it should be high, is high when it should be low, or always high or always low.
What are the symptoms of a cortisol imbalance?
Moodiness or irritability
Fluctuations in body weight
Blood sugar issues
Light headiness and dizzy spells
Frequent colds and allergies
Decreased memory and brain fog
Decreased sex drive or libido
Sleep disturbances (unable to fall asleep for a long time, insomnia, frequent waking during the night and waking up tired)
Cravings for foods which are sweet, salty or high carbohydrate
If you are experiencing any or multiple of these symptoms, consider getting your cortisol levels checked throughout the day to see where the imbalance is occurring. This can be done via your natural health practitioner.
How do I maintain healthy cortisol levels?
Eat a fresh, whole food diet which includes plenty of fruit, veggies, good quality protein, and healthy fats
Avoid caffeine, alcohol, sugar and known food allergens
Eat small regular meals to help regulate blood sugar and avoid overeating
Get adequate sleep - go to bed before 10 pm
Enjoy regular exercise such as walking, swimming, weights, pilates, yoga.
Practice meditation – there are many apps available to help with guided meditation or youtube has many resources
If you are a smoker, make a plan to cease.
Set boundaries in work, relationships, and family
Self-care - schedule time for yourself to switch off, relax and do something you really enjoy
If you're having trouble with cortisol imbalance and would like more guidance and support to help you feel better, please contact me here as I'd be happy to have a face to face consultant with you if you're in Brisbane, or I also connect with people from around Australia and the world via Skype sessions too.
Pam helps women and men prioritise their health and wellbeing. As a naturopath, nutritionist and personal trainer she helps them take control of their mental health and various health conditions through natural medicine and healthy lifestyle changes. She gives realistic ways to help create a happier and healthier life.
When she isn’t running her business, you can find her on the hockey field or creating some delicious food for her husband and kids.