Can you Measure your Stress levels?

By: Dr. Nicole Sandilands ND

We can often feel the impact that stress has on our body, but did you know you can actually measure it?  Cortisol is our main stress hormone and it can easily be measured to allow us to get a good assessment of how the body is coping with stress.  In our clinic, we commonly run a 4 point salivary hormone test to get a very comprehensive view of the body’s own stress response.    Since cortisol is the major stress hormone produced by the adrenal glands, measurement of cortisol is an excellent way of assessing adrenal function.  This test allows us to effectively measure what phase of stress your body is currently under (known as ‘General Adaptation Syndrome’). We send you home with 4 small test tubes that allows you the convenience of collecting 4 samples throughout the day.  Salivary testing of cortisol is widely accepted in the research community and is quickly becoming the preferred way to assess cortisol.  The results of this test allow us to design a treatment plan that is specific to your unique needs.  We will often combine dietary and lifestyle strategies as well as the use of vitamins, herbs and sometimes intravenous therapies to help restore the appropriate adrenal function.  If you are concerned about your stress levels or your adrenal glands, please speak to your naturopathic doctor to determine whether or not this test is indicated for you.

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