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CBD and Cortisol: How CBD Might Work To Block Cortisol Production In The Body

Today we’re talking about Cortisol and CBD.

Have you ever been going through a really stressful time (cough, quarantining with your 2 pre-school age kids, giant dog and husband in a 2,000 square foot house, cough) and noticed that even though your lifestyle hasn’t changed much, the scale does, and not in the way you want?

How does stress effect weight gain?

Your body, when under stress, actually promotes weight gain. Cortisol, the stress hormone, is released in the body and can remain elevated for long periods of time. The ultimate goal for Cortisol is to provide energy for your body. This means it increases your appetite (and, not surprising, makes you crave comfort foods!). Increased Cortisol can also result in fat deposition in the stomach and hip areas, which is very difficult to get rid of (as if you weren’t aware).

CBD and Cortisol

Exercise is one sure fire way to reduce Cortisol, as it actually leads to the release of endorphins, which have natural stress-fighting properties and can lower Cortisol levels. Some studies suggest that CBD can interfere with the secretion of Cortisol by naturally improving mood, anxiety and, you guessed it, stress!

High levels of the stress hormone cortisol can increase the inflammation response, worsen sleep, and create many other problems. The brain releases this hormone to promote the fight-or-flight response in the face of stress. Overworked, sleep-deprived professionals are often at risk for high cortisol levels, as are serious athletes. However, studies indicate that CBD might be able to substantially REDUCE LEVELS OF CORTISOL via several mechanisms.

While the science isn’t conclusive on CBD, there’s much we do know about it and there are some convincing theories. For one thing, the body naturally produces its own cannabinoids which resemble cannabidiol. It’s also apparent that these cannabinoids work through the endocannabinoid system (ECS) and affect disparate elements such as mood, appetite, and inflammation. One working theory is that the ECS is the UNIVERSAL REGULATOR of the body, and works to maintain balance.

The Potential Benefits of CBD for Cortisol

High cortisol levels are often a complex phenomenon and a result of many different influences. While health problems can increase cortisol levels, factors such as stress and sleep deprivation can cause it as well. Not to mention, health problems often cause fear and anxiety which go on to promote cortisol production. A multifaceted problem requires a multifaceted solution, and studies indicate that CBD might fit the bill.

Encourage Good Sleep

Cortisol levels worsening sleep and poor sleep amplifying cortisol production is a trap that can be hard to break. However, one of the ways that CBD is thought to fight high cortisol is by encouraging sleep. One STUDY tested 72 adults who suffered anxiety and slept poorly, then found that over 50% experienced reduced stress and improved sleep.

Relieve Anxiety

Stress is another piece in the puzzle of high cortisol levels, and many people use CBD to self-medicate for it. One STUDY used simulated public speaking to measure the effect on patients with Social Anxiety Disorder. While the control group struggled, the patients who took cannabidiol exhibited less discomfort and performed better.

Reduce Inflammation

While cortisol increases inflammation, chronic pain, and inflammation can also cause CORTISOL RELEASE. When you take CBD, you may also be tackling this toxic feedback loop in a way that helps to reign in cortisol levels. This NCBI STUDY goes into depth on the ways that cannabidiol has demonstrated its potential as a powerful new anti-inflammatory solution.

Decrease Cortisol Levels

Studies show that CBD acts on cortisol via many indirect mechanisms. The holistic approach of reducing the many root causes of cortisol production is valuable, but it’s not all that CBD offers. This STUDY indicates that cannabidiol directly interferes with cortisol production without producing any negative side effects.

Who Should Consider CBD for High Cortisol


Cortisol and inflammation can slow down a weight lifting routine and necessitate longer healing periods. While there are no studies on this application, many weightlifters INCORPORATE CBD TO THEIR PRE-WORKOUT regimen.

Overworked Students and Laborers

Exhausted workers often find themselves out of energy and fueled by stress. It’s not healthy to be stressed so frequently, so it may be worth considering CBD, which some people have found effective in combating the side effects of stress.

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