Intermittent Fasting Increases Cortisol – How to Control

Intermittent Fasting Increases Cortisol – How to Control

Intermittent Fasting Increases Cortisol – How to Control

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so fasting is burning you out all right you’re doing a lot of fasting and you found that you’re just not getting results anymore in fact you find that you’re actually getting more fatigued when you fast and you’re starting to wonder if it’s something for you okay well it could be something known as adrenal fatigue that’s related with a fast but this is a very big but a little bit of adrenal where is normal for a fast we just have to know how to balance it we’re going to have surges of cortisol that occur during a fast we just have to learn how to manipulate them and know how they work within our body cortisol is just as good as it is bad so we’re gonna make some solid sense of all this when we explain how fasting affects your adrenals and the protocol that you can follow to lessen the impact so we have new videos almost every single day nowadays it’s okay like seven days a week coming out at 7:30 a.m. Pacific time so please make sure you’re keeping it locked in here on the channel make sure you hit that red subscribe button and then please go ahead and hit that Bell icon so you can turn on notifications and know whenever I post a new video you don’t want to be missing out alright so like my good friend Mike Muscle put it so fearing that fasting is going to harm your adrenals is similar to fearing that exercise is bad because it raises your blood pressure okay fasting is supposed to put a little bit stress on your adrenals it’s supposed to raise cortisol okay just like exercise is supposed to raise your blood pressure okay we just have to make sure that we’re paying attention if you exercise to the point where your blood pressure is bursting your arteries it’s obviously not good so if you’re fasting doing the wrong things to the point where you’re burning out your adrenals then yeah it’s a bad thing and it can lead to belly fat accumulation and it can lead to those stall outs so let’s talk about how this works first of all and reference some studies and then let’s give you the goods that you can use to make sure this doesn’t happen to you so this first study was published in the Journal of endocrinology and metabolism and it took a look at fasting and it found that fasting does indeed increase your cortisol levels but it does so in a different fashion from what we think you see it increases the pulse of cortisol pulses it doesn’t increase the overall duration or the amount of cortisol spread out you see the way that our body produces cortisol is in these surges it’s not like our body just leaks out cortisol throughout the course of the day our body surge is cortisol at different pulses so what this study did is it took a look at eight men and it had them go ahead and do a controlled day where they ate as normal and then measured their cortisol levels and then I had them do a five-day fast and measured their cortisol levels at the end of the five-day fast or on the fifth day so what they found was interesting they found that there was a 1.8 X increase in cortisol levels on the fasting days than the non fasting days but 1.6 x increase just in the pulses so what that ultimately means is that fasting just increase the sizes of the pulses of cortisol so it’s interesting about this is that if we could actually determine when our body was pulsing cortisol we could really manipulate our fast like we could determine hey our cortisol levels are really high right now so let’s get a workout so we burn more fat or our cortisol levels are really low right now so let’s break our fast so we have less impact more on that to come later in other videos after I dive into more research but the cool thing is we know that cortisol just releases over a trickle of time okay this next study was published in the journal Cell and this study found that short-term fasts do not increase chorus all a whole lot so this study took a look at time restricted eating okay took a look at a group that was eating over a six hour period of time so a six hour eating window and a group that had a 12 hour eating window so basically a fasting group and an on fasting group in a intermittent fasting style and they found that there was no real increase in cortisol in the six hour reading group compared to the 12 hour eating group and no real change in the morning surge of cortisol so actually with shorter term intermittent fasting you probably don’t have a huge spike in cortisol unless you’re doing it frequently which a lot of you probably are if you practice intermittent fasting so you do need to understand how cortisol works so let’s talk about cortisol for a minute and how it relates with belly fat and fat accumulation but also fat burning so cortisol is released under any kind of physiological or even psychological stress right so the brain signals the release of specific adrenocorticotropic hormone that therefore end up releasing glucocorticoids all that means is that your brain sends a signal to the adrenals to release certain things one of which is cortisol okay this can be bad but it can also be really good you see cortisol is highly fat-burning it burns a lot of fat but cortisol also can make you store fat well where’s the difference cortisol is helpful when there’s no other food in the equation because cortisol turns on hormone sensitive lipase so cortisol when we’re during it like doing a fast that helps us that actually helps us having these surges of cortisol because it triggers fat to be burned but if it goes chronic for too long then it can throw off the whole axis and can make it so your adrenals burn out and you feel fatigued cortisol when combined with food is when things are bad when cortisol combines with insulin which is released when we eat that’s when you end up having body fat accumulate okay and it all has to do with the fact that we have glucocorticoid receptors in our abdomen so those glucocorticoids that are released by the adrenals in that whole process we have glucocorticoid receptors in our abdomen in our belly fat so if we have food coming in and we have cortisol levels high then we run into the issue where the fat gets stored specifically in that area where we had those receptors that’s why those old commercials that talk about cortisol and belly fat that’s where they got that whole thing okay it all comes down to that so with that we have to take a look at a protocol I want you to be able to fast without having big giant surges in cortisol that burn out your adrenals I don’t want your body to get so used to fasting that cortisol levels just stay high all the time so your body never gets really an opportunity to take advantage of the surges of cortisol cortisol is our friend when we can control the surges it’s not our friend when it’s chronically high then our body just doesn’t respond to it in a good way anymore we want these spikes of cortisol to elicit a fat-burning response so what do you do okay step one if you’re going to increase the length of your fast do so in a small increment okay slowly increase how long you fast start with a 12-hour fast then go to a 13 then go to a 14 15 et cetera etc okay slowly tack it on what that’s gonna do is it’s gonna make it so your body adapts so you’re not having this chronic heavy stress load by saying I’m gonna do a five-day fast then I’m gonna do another five-day fast you just don’t want to do that it’s a lot of stress on your body we want the stress on our body but again not so much that damages our adrenals then the next thing we want to look at is proper use of electrolytes okay this is a simple one okay the journal endocrinology published a study that did find that one people fasted without electrolytes their cortisol levels and their adrenaline levels would go really really high so that’s probably to say that if electrolytes were in the mix we could at least balance it and take the stress off the adrenals a little bit more okay if we’re deficient in salt the adrenals end up causing all kinds of issues okay we have this release of aldosterone which causes the subsequent release of cortisol so keeping our minerals in place like our sodium ends up making it so that we don’t have as high of a spike of cortisol or constant basically constant elevation of cortisol so it makes life a lot better for those that are fasting now what we really have to pay attention to is how we go about breaking our fast and how we go about the tail-end of our fat so this is probably the most important part of this video because it’s what’s giving you the concrete steps okay so what we have to pay attention to when cortisol is combined with insulin we store fat let me say again when cortisol is combined of insulin we store fat so if our cortisol levels are high because we’re fasting it makes it so that when we do eat we’re much more likely to store what we eat okay cortisol levels are already high and then we eat something so insulin levels are high in conjunction with cortisol so we need to bring cortisol down before we break our fast and you can do that by relaxing and doing whatever you can but there’s also some dietary things that you can do okay switching over to tea instead of coffee in the afternoon is probably one of the most pivotal things you can do coffee is fine I’m not anti coffee coffee in the morning when you already have a surge of cortisol going is really good okay but in the afternoon the last thing you want to do is spike your cortisol even higher before you break your fast and you add food and insulin into the mix so switch away from the caffeine over to like a tea or even an herbal tea and your cortisol levels will come down so that when you do break your fast you have less of an impact on your body now another thing you can do is cinnamon okay so if you want to combine these things you can use like peak tea has these things okay so these are you’ve seen me talk about these guys before I’ve talked about the green tea ones but now they have ones that actually have cinnamon in them as well so they’re more of an herbal tea so this is something that you can drink prior to breaking your fast that’s going to make it so that not only your cortisol levels can come down but cinnamon has a really unique effect so it’s cinnamon does is it acts upon the cell okay and acts upon the cell much like insulin but without insulin so it tells the cell to open up like insulin does but with no insulin so therefore even if cortisol levels are a little bit higher we’re giving an insulin like effect without the actual insulin so we’re able to open the cell without spider insulin whenever we eat we spike our insulin but if we can spike our insulin without actually spiking insulin we can make it so that cortisol doesn’t have the damaging effects so tea is awesome but since peak tea actually has these different variations of fasting teas that’s literally what they are fasting teas and if you know dr. Jason Fung he’s really well known and world renowned in the world of fasting long term fasting and intermittent fasting he’s the one that designed these things so you can check them out there’s a link down in the description if you do want to get your hands on some of these these specific flavors as well as other ones that he’s got for different periods of time during your fast so make sure you check them out special discount down below in the description okay so how this all works additionally when you break your fast you don’t want to be having carbohydrates whether you are following a low-carb diet or not do not have carbohydrates so there’s a study that was published in the Journal of physiology behavior that found that subjects that consumed higher carbohydrate meals had a higher cortisol spike than those that consumed fat or protein so I recommend breaking your fast no matter what you’re doing with just lean protein simple protein that’s not going to cause a big spike in insulin okay remember the goal after we break a fast is to control our insulin to not have a big insulin spike so that way our cortisol levels are still up here because we’ve been fasting we’re not bringing our insulin levels way up here otherwise we would store everything that we ate after we broke a fast we don’t want that so we want to use our cinnamon tea or whatever we can to bring insulin levels nice and low to control blood sugar but also to bring Korus all a little bit lower and then break our fast okay it makes life much much better so the protocol is pretty simple do what you can to keep your cortisol levels lower towards the last third of your fast do everything you can meditate take a nap go for a simple walk if you worked out towards the end of the your cortisol levels are gonna be higher which means you’re gonna have to take drastic measures probably get some more cinnamon in get some other things are gonna reduce cortisol and try to really relax before you actually break your fast and try to wait 30 or 60 minutes after your workout before you break your fast if that’s the case okay so remember utilize whatever you can to get those cortisol levels down towards the end of your fast in the beginning you want the core salt that’s gonna help you burn fat and remember you can take advantage of PT down below in the description if you want to get a special price on them so as always make sure you keep it locked in here in my channel and I’ll see you in the next video

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Intermittent Fasting Increases Cortisol – How to Control – Thomas DeLauer

Longer Fasts DO Increase Cortisol

Study #1 – The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism

Prolonged fasting increases cortisol levels – it does so by increasing the size, rather than the frequency or duration, of cortisol pulses

Cortisol is released in a pulsatile, rather than in a continuous fashion from the adrenal cortex

In this study, 8 normal men by analyzing serum cortisol concentrations measured in blood obtained at 5-min intervals over 24 h on a control (fed) day and on the fifth day of a fast (water only) assigned in randomized order

Five days of fasting induced a 1.8-fold increase in the 24-h endogenous cortisol production rate (fed, 2504; fasted, 4528 nmol/L distribution volume)

This enhanced cortisol production rate was accounted for by a 1.6-fold increase in the mass of cortisol secreted per burst (fed, 115 +/- 12.1; fasted, 183 +/- 17.3 nmol/L)

Cortisol secretory event amplitudes (maximal rates of cortisol release attained within a burst) increased in seven of eight men, and mean secretory burst durations remained unchanged by fasting

Moreover, the number of computer-resolved cortisol secretory bursts per 24 h (fed, 22 +/- 1.4; fasted, 25 +/- 2.0; P = NS) and the interburst interval (fed, 65 +/- 4.0; fasted, 57 +/- 4.4 min) did not change significantly during a 5-day fast.

Shorter Fasts Do NOT Increase Cortisol

Study – Cell

In 8 prediabetic men that 5-weeks of a time restricted feeding (TRF) program (6 hour feeding window) did not increase cortisol as compared to controls (12 hour feeding window)

In other words, the men were randomized to eTRF (6-hr feeding period, with dinner before 3 p.m.) or a control schedule (12-hr feeding period) for 5 weeks and later crossed over to the other schedule.

Morning fasting levels of cortisol (and IL-6) were all unchanged

*Note: reduced levels of 8-isoprostane (D), a marker of oxidative stress to lipids. Because it reduces lipid peroxidation, it may, in turn, reduce the risk of atherosclerosis*

This study was conducted in a randomized-crossover fashion with isocaloric and eucaloric diets.

Cortisol & Ghrelin – Study – The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism
33 male and female subjects underwent 3.5 days of fasting, during which their cortisol increased gradually as the duration of the fast increased, much like the previous study
However, this study also found that there is a strong inverse association between ghrelin and cortisol – as cortisol rises, ghrelin becomes suppressed

Electrolytes (sodium)

Study from The Journal of Endocrinology had 17 subjects fast without electrolyte replacement for 3 days and marked increases in plasma cortisol, ACTH, beta-endorphin, adrenaline, noradrenaline and dopamine were found

Unfortunately, this study didn’t compare the effects against those who would supplement with electrolytes, but it seems logical that depriving your body of them would enhance the stress effect


No cell in the human body can function without salt – our electrolytes drive every intracellular process, and, without salt, the human body cannot produce energy, and when fasting, you’re essentially depriving your body of salt

A lack of sodium causes the brain to send signals to the adrenal gland to increase the release of hormones responsible for water balance (aldosterone & vasopressin)

Cortisol is released alongside these hormones

Minimize Caffeine (Tea over Coffee)

Men (48) and women (48) completed a double-blind, crossover trial conducted over 4 weeks – on each week, subjects abstained for 5 days from dietary caffeine and instead took capsules totaling 0 mg, 300 mg, and 600 mg/day in 3 divided doses

In contrast, 5 days of caffeine intake at 300 mg/day and 600 mg/day abolished the cortisol response to the initial 9:00 AM caffeine dose, although cortisol levels were again elevated between 1:00 PM and 7:00 PM after the second caffeine dose taken at 1:00 PM

Concluded that cortisol responses to caffeine are reduced, but not eliminated, in healthy young men and women who consume caffeine on a daily basis

Small Meal Upon Breaking Fast

In the fed state, when insulin is around in high amounts, HSL activity is turned way down while LPL activity is cranked up – in this way, insulin magnifies cortisol’s fat storing properties while blocking its fat burning activity

Cortisol and insulin also block the action of each other by decreasing the sensitivity of their respective receptors

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