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stress.....cortisol

I constantly have stress symptoms all day, muscle tension,fatigue, headache and irritability.  Does anyone know if cortisol blocker supplements work for stress?
11 Responses
Avatar universal
Hi,
What is the "cortisol blocker" supplement?  There are some thimgs that can lower stress....
Avatar universal
COMMUNITY LEADER
I know of no cortisol blocker that is over the counter.


There are some that are used by doctors to treat Cushing's disease, some for short term, as they need to be monitored for possible liver damage. There are others that are being used now, and some that will actually permanently destroy the adrenal gland. In any case, when you take one of the cortisol blockers, you must take a corticosteroid replacement or you will get very sick and are subject to adrenal crisis.

Blocking cortisol will NOT lower stress. I used to have very high cortisol thanks to a pituitary tumor, and had my adrenals removed to shut all that off - thus now I have low cortisol. I must replace cortisol or I will die. Adrenaline and many other hormones also play into stress - cortisol is but one part of this.

Having too much will stress the body, but you must locate the source of the cortisol production signal (adrenal, pituitary, ectoptic, or taking steroids) and address it.
291885 tn?1404893207
Rumpled is correct- you should first address the cause of the cortisol before playing around with anything. If it's from stress you need to address the stress- the cortisol is your body's way of coping with it. A little cortisol boost is actually normal in stressful times but put your body under that kind of pressure for too long and you'll harm your adrenal glands. It may be difficult to do but you need to find ways to cope with your stressors and that will bring your cortisol down. I know all too well what high levels of stress for too long can do and would give anything to go back and change things. Take control of your health and learn ways to relax (I know it's hard- I'm fighting a second case of 3 years with mono b/c I didn't listen to my body when I should have).
Take care,
Chel
183933 tn?1290216962
That's interesting. I have so much stress in my life due to constant mono relapses and having one year old twins and I just got my cortisol levels checked and mine are pretty much non existent. I am being put on cortisol supplements.
Avatar universal
COMMUNITY LEADER
Cortisol in a normal person should rise a fall throughout the day. During times of stress, cortisol will rise, but I think it is mis-understood by most (even doctors) that it will stay elevated or that it can or should exceed the upper part of a normal range.

Too little cortisol is bad - too much cortisol is bad.

Giving cortisol, such as cortef, prednisone etc. is common to reduce inflammation, knock down the immune system, or replace the adrenal function.

Carisa, I do hope that you are being replaced after having been tested (as you indicated) and that one of the tests was a stimulation test. One of the odd things about adrenals is that they are lazy, so when you replace their function, they may or may not wake up again. It may have been that with low cortisol, your immune system was compromised, hence why you kept getting sick. Is your doctor also giving you florinef (if you need it) and advised you on salt (if you need it)?

Ironically, low cortisol AND high cortisol = no immune system. Bleah.
798555 tn?1292787551
Sometimes the real answer that is you need to relieve the stress from your life. We all hear that, but how to do it?  

The current economic situation of the US (and the world) is a major cause of stress, unless your a billionaire. But their stressed too, watching their $ leave them. As Americans this may be a lesson not to live beyond our means (I hope it is). Money is a major cause of stress as people still try to keep up with the Jones's. Why do some do this? Then there are companies overworking people with less pay = stress. And unemployment.

No good answer. I once asked a doctor why the health care community always says you need to remove stress (as they lay off nurses ect), and how do they expect you to do this. He said rob a bank and go hide in the Bahamas. That advice sounded stressful. Simplifying your life is the best move and its your choice, but for some its too late.
1216899 tn?1288570325
I like the advice your doctor gave you about removing stress, thanks for the chuckle.
Avatar universal
COMMUNITY LEADER
That was hysterical! But then probably there is the risk of skin cancer too... *sigh* LOL...
183933 tn?1290216962
Rumpled~~I have an appointment with an endocrinologist in a few weeks to go over all of this. I only did a saliva test. I swabbed my mouth at 8, 12, 4, and 8. At 8 am, it showed that I was on the high end of normal, by 12, it had dropped to very low, and by 8 pm, my cortisol levels were almost non existant. I wonder if that test was accurate. What test is the best to find out what really is going on? So to answer your question, no, I don't think it was a stimulation test. My doctor did put me on a low dose cortef twice a day. 5 mg each. I don't want to be taking that though if there really is nothing going on, then suddenly my adrenals stop working because of the cortef. So confusing. What do you think?
Avatar universal
COMMUNITY LEADER
The saliva test is a point in time test...
I actually find it odd that he put you on meds based on that test only... and now that you are on them, you can do no more testing.

The test is accurate, so a point - it only tests that moment in time and well, it is just that moment. So it should be done several times to show a pattern.

Adrenals work in a cycle and now you throw pills in - if you toss them in at times when there should not be peaks but valleys, you can mess things up, and yeah, they will tend to be unhappy little glands. But they are very unpredictable.

It is a low dose, but that is half a normal day. It really depends on when, I guess.
183933 tn?1290216962
I think I may need to find a different doctor. I didn't realize adrenals worked in a cycle. That's interesting. Thanks for helping me out. I need to get a doctor for a second opinion, clearly....
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