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7 Best Supplements To Lower Cortisol

7 Best Supplements To Lower Cortisol:

Cortisol is NOT your enemy – it\\\\\\\’s your protector

Cortisol is a health-supporting hormone, a steroid produced by the adrenal glands that is secreted into the bloodstream throughout the day. Cortisol works alongside your brain, pituitary gland, and adrenal gland. This is called the hypothalamic–pituitary–adrenal axis, as described in the following article;

Cortisol | You and Your Hormones from the Society for Endocrinology 

Cortisol is a significant hormone in regulating metabolism and maintaining fluid balance. It also maintains blood pressure, immune function, and bone density.

Additionally, cortisol is released into the bloodstream when needed to mobilize energy reserves (such as during exercise). It is released during times of emotional distress, such as anger, fear, anxiety, or sadness. — and this is where problems can begin.

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Why cortisol sometimes just won\\\\\\\’t stop protecting us

Under normal circumstances, stressful situations come and go, and cortisol adjusts by lowering secretion levels and returning the body to homeostasis (balance). A simple example is walking down the street, and a barking dog rushes at you. Immediately your body goes into \\\\\\\”fight-or-flight\\\\\\\” mode. Adrenaline and cortisol both rise. Adrenaline amps you up for action while cortisol curbs nonessential functions that won\\\\\\\’t help you when you\\\\\\\’re in this fight-or-flight situation with the dog. Processes such as immune system responses and digestive and reproductive systems are temporarily put on hold. Once the crisis is over, all systems return to normal.

However, modern life sometimes presents us with a sense of constant stress, and much of it is mental and emotional. Work, finances, personal relations, and traumatic events put cortisol in a position of over-protecting, never allowing the body to return to balance. The cortisol faucet never stops flowing, which can result in serious health problems from chronic stress such as:

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Digestive problems
  • Headaches
  • Muscle tension and pain
  • Heart disease, heart attack, high blood pressure, and stroke
  • Sleep problems
  • Weight gain
  • Memory and concentration impairment

How can you lower cortisol levels?

Change your lifestyle… you\\\\\\\’ve probably heard this before.

There are numerous books, blogs, and systems to explore healthy lifestyle changes. The basics are getting more rest, eating nutritious food, regular exercise, and… here\\\\\\\’s the big one, reducing stress. But it takes time to develop new healthy habits and to achieve an appreciable level of stress reduction. Most people need a little help along the path to change, especially when it comes to managing stress, and that help can come in the form of supplements to lower cortisol.

Supplements to lower cortisol

Supplements to lower cortisol include adaptogens (plant-based & mushrooms), 

vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and prebiotics. This article examines seven supplements to lower cortisol; four are adaptogens, one is an amino acid, and one is a mineral.

Amazing adaptogens – natural supplements to reduce stress and lower cortisol.

Adaptogens are specific ingredients in plants and mushrooms that can assist in adjusting how your body reacts to stress, correlating to the amount of cortisol released into your system. If you\\\\\\\’re anxious and stressed, adaptogens will tell your body to \\\\\\\”back off\\\\\\\” on the amount of cortisol. (Sometimes, cortisol is too low, and adaptogens tell your body to increase it). The goal of adaptogens is to get your body off the hormonal roller coaster of extreme ups and downs –bringing it to homeostasis (steady state balance ).

According to the Cleveland Clinic, What are Adaptogens & Types to qualify as adaptogens, plants and mushrooms must have three qualities:

  • They are non-toxic when taken in normal doses.
  • They help your body cope with stress.
  • They allow your body to return to balance (homeostasis).


#1. Mighty mushrooms – Not the psychedelic type

Adaptogenic mushrooms won\\\\\\\’t take you on a mind trip – they\\\\\\\’re medicinal mushrooms used for centuries by cultures worldwide, particularly in Chinese and Ayurvedic Medicine. This vast kingdom has over 1.5 million varieties of mushrooms and fungi! Mushrooms vary in their medicinal uses, but many can reduce stress by regulating your hormonal system and lowering cortisol levels.

They assist in relaxing you so you can sleep better. Adaptogenic mushrooms are one of the safest and best types of supplements to lower cortisol.

Powerful Plant Adaptogens

#2 Ginkgo (Ginkgo biloba)

Ginkgo biloba as an Alternative Medicine in the Treatment of Anxiety in Dementia and other Psychiatric Disorders

Ginkgo is a popular adaptogenic herb that helps you become more stress-resilient.

Promising studies suggest that ginkgo increases your body\\\\\\\’s ability to handle stressors by counteracting the effects of high levels of cortisol and adrenaline.

#3 Green tea extract 

L-theanine is an amino acid found in green tea that facilitates relaxation by regulating neurotransmitters (i.e., serotonin and dopamine) in our brains, possibly reducing the intensity of mood disorders and improving sleep quality. An added benefit is that green tea is rich in polyphenols that reduce inflammation, and it\\\\\\\’s well known for its antioxidant content.

#4 Rhodiola Rosea

Rhodiola Rosea | Mental Health America

Rhodiola Rosea is an adaptogen herb that grows in cold climates in the mountains of Europe and Asia; it\\\\\\\’s also known as arctic or golden root. It helps the body deal with stressful situations and reduces anxiety, fatigue, and depression.

#5 Ashwagandha root (Withania somnifera) 

Also called Indian ginseng, or winter cherry, this herbal shrub\\\\\\\’s roots and berries are used medicinally to relieve stress and anxiety. Several human studies show ashwagandha\\\\\\\’s ability to decrease stress and anxiety levels in test participants significantly.

An Alternative Treatment for Anxiety: A Systematic Review of Human Trial Results Reported for the Ayurvedic Herb Ashwagandha

Magnesium– a mineral that helps manage stress and lower cortisol.

#6 Magnesium

Magnesium is an essential mineral that regulates stress levels by helping you relax and, consequently, lowers cortisol levels. A study published in the Journal of Nutrition found that magnesium supplementation reduced cortisol levels resulting in the test subjects feeling less stressed and anxious. 

The effects of magnesium supplementation on subjective anxiety – White Rose Research Online

In addition to helping lower cortisol levels, magnesium lowers adrenaline and noradrenaline levels. These hormones are responsible for the fight-or-flight response, which is triggered when we feel threatened or under pressure.

Magnesium can also help you sleep better. \\\\\\\”Magnesium may help regulate neurotransmitters that are directly related to sleep,\\\\\\\” Dr. Umeda says. Neurotransmitters are chemicals that transmit messages between nerve cells in your brain and body. (It\\\\\\\’s important to note that magnesium plays only a supporting role in their function.)

Does Magnesium Help You Sleep?

A calming amino acid that lowers cortisol.

#7 GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid)

Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA), has been used as a natural supplement for many years to reduce anxiety, insomnia, stress, and pain. GABA, also known as \\\\\\\”the calming neurotransmitter,\\\\\\\” is an integral part of our brain chemistry. It\\\\\\\’s found throughout the central nervous system, where it plays a role in regulating sleep, muscle tone, emotional responses, mood, and memory.

 Gamma-Aminobutyric Acid (GABA): What It Is, Function & Benefits

GABA is made by amino acids, which are the building blocks of proteins. There are two primary sources of these amino acids in humans: food and the liver.

Exploring supplements to lower cortisol.

The need to reduce stress and lower cortisol has resulted in innovative companies creating various products formulated with many of the supplements discussed in this article. These products can contain combinations of adaptogens, amino acids, and vitamins and minerals. They can be consumed as whole foods, powders, drinks, pills, or capsules. Here are a few for you to explore. 

 #1 myPEAK DeltaSleep: All Natural Sleep Aid

This supplement supports

  • Faster Sleep
  • Optimized Deep Wave Sleep
  • Muscle Relaxation
  • Reduced stress
  • Calm and relaxation
  • Waking Up Refreshed

It contains a proprietary blend of Valerian Root, Chamomile Flower, Passionflower Extract, GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid), and Vitamin B3.

#2 Best Magnesium Supplement For Kids & Adults – HelloHealth 

HelloHealth has produced a premium magnesium supplement called HAPPY CALM MAGNESIUM – containing Magnesium Bisglycinate Chelated, Vegetable Capsule (Hypromellose), and Rice Flour, with Magnesium Bisglycinate as the primary active ingredient. 

This product supports: 

  • Calm & relaxation for more restful sleep
  • Enhance strength and prevent lean muscle loss
  • Increase endurance 
  • Balance and regulate hormones
  • Brain and mood function
  • Increased heart health
  • Metabolism and weight loss
  • The immune system 

#3 RealRest – Reishi, Valerian and Lemon Balm

This supplement comes in pill form and contains a blend of Reishi mushroom with Valerian and Lemon Balm extracts. It\\\\\\\’s made from certified organic ingredients. It aids in:

  • Rest relaxation and sleep
  • Liver support
  • Blood sugar levels
  • Can aid in regulating cortisol levels


#4 The Serenity Pill – MM Plant Co

Medicine Man Plant Co. has formulated a pill for relaxation and stress reduction. Its unique formula contains ashwagandha root extract and passionflower extract, purported to increase the brain\\\\\\\’s GABA concentration, leading to a sense of security and calmness. It also has nutmeg, which studies show supports healthy moods  Chemical diversity and pharmacological significance of the secondary metabolites of nutmeg (Myristica fragrans Houtt.) – PMC. The last ingredient is green tea extract – which also supports mood enhancement.

#5  Rebalance Health

Rebalance health has a stress relief supplement system, one for men and one for women. Their products contain many supplements mentioned in this article, including nutrient-dense adaptogens, amino acids, and vitamins and minerals– among other ingredients. They have an online cortisol quiz that you can take.

#6 CORTIGON – UMZU

UMZU has produced a stress-reducing supplement in capsule form.

Product highlights:

  • Naturally reduces stress
  • Improves mood and focus
  • Supports healthy brain function

Contains:

  • Phosphatidylserine
  • Ginkgo Biloba
  • Vitamin B12
  • Vitamin B6

#7 Nutricost L-Theanine Capsules

Nutricost has put L-Theanine, the amino acid found in green and black tea, into capsule form. This concentrated dose can help to:

  • Reduce Stress and Anxiety
  • Improve Sleep Quality
  • Improve Mental Focus
  • Fortify Immunity

If you suspect your cortisol is high, you can ask your doctor to conduct a test – which is always better than guessing. Then as you begin improving your lifestyle choices and habits, you might consider supplementation as an aid toward reducing stress and improving your health.

For Further Reading And Research:

Understanding adaptogenic activity: specificity of the pharmacological action of adaptogens and other phytochemicals

GABA Receptor – StatPearls – NCBI Bookshelf.

Physiology, Cortisol – StatPearls – NCBI Bookshelf

Disclaimer: Supplements to lower cortisol

Important Note: The information contained in this article is for general informational purposes only, and should not be construed as health or medical advice, nor is it intended to diagnose, prevent, treat, or cure any disease or health condition. Before embarking on any diet, fitness regimen, or program of nutritional supplementation, it is advisable to consult your healthcare professional in order to determine its safety and probable efficacy in terms of your individual state of health.

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