Are you stressed and holding onto belly fat? Cortisol may be to blame.
What is cortisol?
Some have called it the “master” of all hormones. Others curse it for its ability to wreak havoc on our body’s fragile endocrine balance. In spite of the mixed opinions one thing is certain: cortisol is a powerful hormone necessary for life. But if its level is not optimal in your body, your health could suffer.
The hormone cortisol is produced in the adrenal glands and is primarily responsible for regulating blood sugar, helping to metabolize fats, protein and carbohydrates and assisting in managing our stress response.
We all have times of stress in our lives, and cortisol helps us to function during these times. When the stress goes up, cortisol kicks in and delivers help. Short term cortisol benefits: We get a quick burst of energy, our memory sharpens, our immunity increases, and our sensitivity to pain decreases.
These are all important and natural functions of cortisol and ensure that we are able to weather the curve balls that life throws at us.
However, if the stress doesn’t let up, neither does the cortisol. Unfortunately, what is healthy in small bursts becomes dangerous over the long term.