What is cortisol?

Cortisol is a hormone that plays a major role in stress, metabolism, and immunity. It naturally rises and falls throughout the day/night.

Why is it included in the Balance axis?

High cortisol levels are an indicator of prolonged stress or other underlying issues. Over time, high levels of cortisol can lead to weight gain, fat redistribution, poor sleep, and a lowered immune system. Low levels might indicate poor adrenal function.

How can I better understand my results?

  • 6 am - 8 am: 10-20 mcg/dL
  • Around 4 pm: 3-10 mcg/dL

Where can I learn more?

Dr. Andrew Huberman has an entire episode dedicated to cortisol as it relates to energy and the immune system

Dr. Huberman has another episode about stress, which includes content on cortisol

Peter Attia, M.D. has extensive posts on the interaction between cortisol, sleep, and stress