The role of cortisol in the body
Cortisol is one of the hormones produced by the human body with the help of the adrenal cortex. It is one of the most active of human hormones, largely due to its important role in shaping both the physical and psychological state of a particular individual.
The fact that one of the main features that carries cortisol is the regulation of carbohydrate metabolism in the human body. In the case that the amount of cortisol produced by the adrenal glands, non-standard, it may lead to violations of such exchange. As a result, people consuming normal amounts of carbohydrates, you may not absorb it, which leads to fatigue, lack of energy and other similar symptoms. Another variant of this disease - on the contrary, excessively active uptake of carbohydrates: as a result, people consuming its usual calorie intake, will rapidly gain weight.
In addition, one of the informal names of cortisol - the stress hormone: it is produced in the presence of a stressful situation that is difficult to read man. In turn, the constantly elevated levels of cortisol has a devastating impact on the muscles, triggers the transition of stress in chronic condition and leads to other unpleasant symptoms. Finally, elevated levels of cortisol may be one of the indicators of serious diseases, such as adrenal tumors, AIDS and others.
Analysis of cortisol
Having a suspicion for elevated levels of cortisol in the patient's body, in connection with the appearance of one or more of the described symptoms, the doctor may refer the patient for analysis by the method of blood sampling from the vein. It should be borne in mind that to obtain reliable results, you need to properly prepare for the examination.
First, we must note that the level of cortisol in the blood affect certain medications, such as those that contain estrogens or oral contraceptives. So before you go to take the test, inform your doctor about any medications you take: perhaps he asks you to take a break in their appointment. In addition, the level of cortisol is influenced by the factors causing the occurrence of stress. Therefore, a few days before the test try not to worry and not to engage in active sports. It is also recommended to stop Smoking a day before analysis.
Finally, we need to remember that the level of cortisol in the blood is subject to rather significant diurnal fluctuations. Usually the doctor is interested in the maximum level, which is typical for the patient, so take this analysis it is recommended in the morning hours, from about 6 to 9 am. To obtain the most accurate result in the blood test for cortisol, and in determining the level of many other hormones, it is recommended to visit the lab on an empty stomach.