The human body is a very complex system. It has several hormones that are necessary to regulate bodily functions. Endocrine glands produce and regulate hormones in the body. The role of the endocrine gland is to secrete hormones in the bloodstream. Hormones are messengers that control and regulate activities throughout the human body. The hormones can be classified into three main categories: amines, proteins, and steroids. Chains of amino acids produce proteins, whereas cholesterol has steroids. There are many different steroids in the human body, and among them is a steroid hormone called cortisol. Different organs secrete these steroid hormones. Adrenaline secretes the adrenal steroids, and the sex organs secrete the sex hormones.
Cortisol is a steroid hormone made in the adrenal gland. Therefore, adrenal glands secrete it in the bloodstream. It is one of the glucocorticoids. The purpose of cortisol is to regulate a wide range of the human body’s vital processes, including the metabolism and the immune system. Moreover, it also plays a crucial role in the management of stress in the human body. Therefore, it is an essential hormone, and almost everybody cell can stimulate it. Moreover, it can have many actions, including controlling the body’s sugar level, blood pressure, salt, and water balance. Even it plays a role in the development of the fetus. There are home test kits available to check for the cortisol level in the human body. It is essential to check them because it can lead to complications if the blood sugars are too high or low.
Cortisol At-Home Test Kit Process Steps
You can order the cortisol test kit online and receive it at your doorstep. You perform the testing procedure at your convenience, and the kit comes with instructions to guide you regarding the process.
- The sample should be taken in a fasted state before 9 am using the finger prick method. There would be guidelines in the test kit regarding the collection of the sample.
- After collecting the sample, you should ship it back on the same day using the prepaid shipping label provided.
- CLIA and CAP-accredited laboratories analyze the samples. These are the highest accreditation. The results are confidential and are available on the secure account of the user within 2-5 days.
- After receiving the results, the customer can contact the medical team, who will give them advice based on their positive or negative result.
Symptoms and Complications of Unbalanced Cortisol
Several symptoms can indicate the signs of abnormal levels of cortisol in the body. Some of these symptoms may include fatigue, headache, and cognitive difficulties, which means difficulty in remembering things. Unbalanced cortisol also provides weakness, body aches, and a decrease in sex drive. Fluctuation in weights and blood sugar levels can also be a sign of high or low cortisol levels. Irregular periods and erectile dysfunction may also link to the change in the cortisol level.
However, it is essential to consider that the cortisol level varies throughout the day. They are highest when you wake up in the morning and then gradually fall throughout the day. The cortisol level timing corresponds to an individual’s daily working pattern because the situation reverses if you are a person who works at night.
Several conditions require a test of cortisol level. If you have an extremely low or high cortisol level, you need to consult a doctor. Moreover, if you’re feeling down constantly or are competitively bodybuilding, there may be a need to get tested for cortisol. Furthermore, suppose you’ve high levels of cortisol. In that case, you may develop Cushing Syndrome symptoms, resulting from high cortisol levels. Similarly, you can develop Addison disease if you’ve deficient cortisol levels.
Cushing syndrome may occur when the body makes more cortisol on its own or uses oral cortisol’s medicine. It can cause fatty humps around your shoulders and pink/purple stretch marks on the body. It can cause bone loss, high blood pressure and may even lead to type 2 diabetics. This syndrome has a treatment, and the earlier you start the treatment, the sooner you’ll recover.
On the other hand, Addison disease occurs when the adrenal body glands do not produce enough cortisol. It is an endocrine disorder, and tuberculosis (TB) is the most common cause. TB affects your lung but can spread to other parts of the body. It develops this disease if it spreads to the adrenal glands. It doesn’t have a treatment, but it can be improved through different therapies.