7 Surprising Signs of High Cortisol Levels

We often experience too much stress. This may easily destroy your health and worsen overall well-being. High cortisol levels make you more vulnerable to different bacterial and viral infections. It is crucial to lowering cortisol levels in a timely manner. By lowering your cortisol levels,  you may be able to prevent many severe health conditions. 

Here 7 unexpectable signs that you have high cortisol. 

1. You crave unhealthy foods

High cortisol levels may contribute to high blood sugar and increase your risk of developing type 2 diabetes. High glucose makes your pancreas produce insulin to decrease sugar levels. Thus, the levels of glucose in the blood drop sharply and you experience a desire to eat food that may replenish sugar levels. 

2. Poor night’s sleep

If you have low cortisol levels it usually drops at night allowing you to sleep better and relax. However, if the levels of cortisol are too high it may be very hard to fall asleep and get enough night’s sleep. Too much cortisol can make you turn and toss at night. You will feel tired and exhausted in the morning. Lack of adequate sleep can undermine the work of all body systems. 

3. Digestion disorders

Stress may cause a variety of digestive disorders like bloating, inflammation, and a loss of appetite. Your brain and gut are closely connected and constantly communicate since your gut contains more neurons than even a spinal cord. When cortisol activates a flight-or-flight regimen in the body it causes certain digestion changes. 

Cortisol causes spasms in your esophagus and increases the acidity in the gut. It causes you to feel nauseous and may trigger diarrhea or constipation. In more severe cases high cortisol levels may contribute to acid reflux, irritable bowel syndrome, and peptic ulcers. 

4. Inexplicable pains

High cortisol levels may deplete your adrenal glands. Because of this, he levels of prolactin in your body may increase. This increases your body’s sensitivity to pain. Thus, people with high cortisol levels often experience inexplicable pains in the body. 

Excessive cortisol may also cause certain parts of your brain to shrink. This may trigger severe migraines. Patients with high cortisol often report back and shoulder pain. You may talk to your doctor about regenerative therapy to reduce the cortisol levels and eliminate the cause of the pain. 

5. Problems with sex

High cortisol levels may cause both physical and mental problems with sex. Stress causes your body to undergo a series of changes like increased heart rate, blood pressure, and breathing rate. At the same time, your body diminishes the non-vital functions like sex drive. 

In addition to the physiological aspect, cortisol also affects you psychologically. It causes your mind to become busy and frazzled. This distracts you from wanting sex. Cortisol may also impact your mood, cause depression, and decrease libido. 

6. Frequent colds and infections

A short spurt of cortisol can boost your immunity. However, long term exposure to cortisol depletes your immune system’s ability to fight infections. Stress may cause a decrease in white blood cells (lymphocytes) that are aimed at fighting infections. High cortisol levels also make you prone to chronic inflammation. This increases the risk of heart conditions and healthy cell damage. 

7. Weight gain

High levels of cortisol can make you eat more than usual. Increased levels of cortisol cause higher insulin levels. Your blood sugar drops and you crave sugary and fatty foods. Over time this may turn in a bad habit. Moreover, cortisol affects the process of fat distribution in the body. It causes fat to accumulate in your abdomen even though you eat healthily and exercise regularly.