The definition of stress is anything that creates a change in our body. Initially designed for life-threatening stress like being attacked by a predator, temperature extremes, poisons, and venoms etc. You can’t afford to wait to see what the stress is so you can shoot first and ask questions later just in case it is life-threatening. Now that our body is exposed to other stresses such as work life, social interactions, phones, behavior and rules, wi-fi, electromagnetic radiation, phones, toxins, pollution, chemicals, phones and so many more we are learning every day are adding burden to our body. Initiating innate survival techniques in response to the change.
If we’re getting chased by a tiger; massive amounts of adrenalin and cortisol would have been released by the body so we could (hopefully) outrun or outfight the beast. If we didn’t have that response, we would have been the big cat’s lunch; and of course, then not had a chance to make babies. This is partly why there are so many people suffering from stress in the world. You inherited a survival technique that is ideal for surviving acute life-threatening stress but may not be the most efficient way to deal with a troll, a text, bills, public speaking, crowds, or that boss on your back.
How we react to stress
Nowadays, most of us aren’t being chased by big cats but our genes are still programmed that way. The ‘beast’ chasing us today is chronic stress, the long-term daily grind, and constant exposure and unavoidable stress unlike the Tiger’s ‘minutes’ of acute intense stress.
Each time, regardless of the trigger we release neurotransmitters (such as noradrenaline) and hormones (in particular cortisol) that catalyse a series of events that help us deal with the challenge. Cortisol is a very interesting hormone as it helps with the survival response through various mechanisms like increasing blood sugar and blocking relaxation and sleepy chemicals but then it has a “negative feedback” effect, letting the body know that you had a stress response and can now switch off and relax.
Problem is with modern life there is constantly one form of trigger or another so there is a constant stimulus to pump out these stress chemicals. Chronic exposure to a powerful hormone like cortisol can change you.
Yet here we are with the mortgage, stressful job and even environmental stress we simply can’t escape. We just have to manage these unavoidable stressors better.
The hormonal fluctuations
To fully understand how to influence hormonal secretions and activities we must first understand the big picture and know the natural cycles that dictate our body’s priorities between thrive or survive. The Hypothalamus in our brain collects data from our body to inform of potential stressors. Our body can’t afford to wait and see if something is life-threatening before it reacts, therefore it will trigger a stress response, proactively, just in case. The immune system, inflammatory chemicals, emotional stress, fear, pain, temperature extremes, toxicity, training hard, caffeine etc. will all activate the Hypothalamus to initiate a survival response. The end result is that the hypothalamus sends this stress message to our pituitary gland, which then signals the adrenals to pump out cortisol. This, of course, is a natural response but too much cortisol is very bad for our health.
Cortisol has a number of jobs to do to aid in short term and long-term survival:
- In the short term, cortisol helps to raise blood sugar by gluconeogenesis and insulin resistance. It achieves this by breaking down muscle tissue.
- It also switches off most of the internal stress activators if they have been temporarily spiked by a low dose trigger like a microorganism or an allergen.
- Cortisol switches off the activated immune system and stops the reaction.
- Cortisol switches off the inflammatory response (by the way, cortisone and hydrocortisone creams for arthritis, asthma and allergic reactions are drug versions of cortisol).
- Cortisol blocks the sleepy chemical serotonin and wakes you up (good if the tiger is chasing you, bad if you want to go to sleep).
- Cortisol raises blood pressure and blood volume through fluid retention in case of injury. But bad if you want a toned body!
The herbs all of which are found in the Cort-RX
Take Home Message
If you feel you have cortisol dysregulation, try to reduce the stressors in your life. Easier said than done right? If you can’t spend your days on the beach, you need to strengthen your resistance to the damaging effects of either low or high cortisol level.
Frequently asked questions
Why is there no black pepper in Cort RX?
Turmeric contains essential oils known as volatile oils. They are often lost in processing and no longer present in most herbal extracts. These volatile oils are the compounds responsible for carrying the turmeric active ingredients into your body. Without these natural volatile oils the active ingredients of turmeric are no longer active.
ATP Science has gone to great lengths to source high potency turmeric extract with the volatile oils intact and preserved and available to act as a vehicle to drive the active curcuminoids into the body.
Other strategies to improve turmeric absorption include the addition of black pepper. We purposely did not add black pepper extract into our product for a couple of reasons.
1. Black pepper increases absorption of certain nutrients by inhibiting certain detoxification pathways. It blocks phase 2 glucuronidation to slow down the ability of the liver to detoxify chemicals and hormones and thereby allowing things to slip through. Phase 2 glucuronidation pathways are very important to help detoxify such things as toxic metabolites of estrogen, xeno estrogens, plastics and other pollutanats, other forms of toxic exposure, that contribute to hormonal dysregulation. By adding a concentrated black pepper extract to aid the absorption of the curcuminoids it may reduce the efficacy of other products that are used in combination with it that are designed to support healthy estrogen detoxification.
2. Black pepper’s effect on the ultrastructure of intestinal brush border; meaning it works on mucosa as an irritant to make the membrane more permeable. This is the reason why we added black pepper to the topical range (Block E3, Subcut and Prototype 8) to enhance penetration but have excluded it from oral supplements to prevent irritation to the gut wall.
To find out more continue reading here: //atpscience.co.uk/turmeric-black-pepper/
What is the best dose of the Cort RX?
There are many ways to use Cort Rx and there are a variety of different dosing strategies for this. Cort Rx can be used for acute short-term intense aggressive protocols for inflammation, toxicity, immune challenge or stress; and Cort Rx can be used to address long term chronic issues such as adrenal maladaptation. The general recommended dosage is x1 capsule 3 times with main meals daily.
To find out what strategy suits you best continue reading here: //atpscience.co.uk/strategies-for-using-cort-rx/
Is this product helpful for shift workers?
Yes. We recommend taking x2 capsules when you are needing to go to sleep. We do not recommend using the products when you go to work.