You can purchase at-home cortisol test kits to measure your stress hormone levels easily. Learn how to use a cortisol test kit and where to buy one here.
Cortisol is an important hormone that functions to regulate your blood pressure, act as an anti-inflammatory, and even modulate your immune function. It also plays a role in your fight or flight process to adjust bodily functions to help you react appropriately when faced with a threat (real or imagined).
Many people refer to cortisol as “the stress hormone” and figure that you want as little of this around as possible. But, the truth is, you want a healthy amount of cortisol being produced. Too little or too much cortisol can both be dangerous and damaging to your body.
A cortisol level that is out of whack can signal extreme stress, or even be a condition where the body produces too much or too little as a dysfunction. These conditions are called Cushing’s Syndrome or Addison’s Disease, respectively.
So, since healthy cortisol levels are so important to helping you feel at your best, and we live in a world where stressors can feel non-stop – it can be a good idea to test your cortisol levels on occasion.
Below, we will review why someone might want to test their cortisol levels at home, where you can purchase an at-home cortisol test, how to use an at-home cortisol test, and cover what you might want to do with your results.
Someone might be curious or worried about their cortisol levels for a few different reasons. Maybe you already know you have one of the above conditions where you have too high or too low cortisol production and you want to keep an eye on it. Or, maybe you have been through prolonged periods of stress and feel like your cortisol levels are out of whack.
You may even be familiar with the common symptoms of too high or too low cortisol, and feel like you have been experiencing some of these:
There are a few different places where you may come across an at-home cortisol test. But, be careful when selecting a good one for you to make sure they are accurate, in-date, and will be analyzed in a certified laboratory.
Here at Strut, we offer combination hormone tests for men and women to give you some insight into the levels of your most common hormones – including cortisol. We are a doctor-led telehealth company, and the panels are analyzed in a certified laboratory, so you can feel confident about your kit and results.
Our at-home Women’s Health Panel measures for Cortisol as well as Estradiol, and DHEA.
Our at-home Men’s Health Panel measures for Cortisol as well as Testosterone, Estradiol, and DHEA.
There are finger-prick blood-spot tests, and only require 5 drops of blood to complete.
You can learn more about these health panels as well as other at-home test kits that we offer on our website at StrutHealth.com.
Exactly how to use your at-home cortisol test will vary depending on your exact kit and how it is measuring your cortisol. Cortisol tests can be performed through blood, urine, and even saliva.
Our kit is a blood-spot kit. To use our kit you simply use the enclosed alcohol wipe to clean a finger, use the enclosed lancet device to make a small finger puncture, and then drop 5 drops of blood onto the collection card in your kit.
Then, you enclose your sample in the bag given, and ship it back in the same box with the enclosed return label. Easy!
Be sure to read through all directions in your it to make sure the sample is collected exactly as needed.
You might just be performing a cortisol, or any other hormone test, out of curiosity. In that case, take a look at your results and share them with your doctor as needed. The results will come back to you and are fully downloadable for your use, as you see fit.
If the results come back abnormally high or low, it is important to share that with a medical professional and seek medical care to figure out the next steps to properly maintain your health. As we mentioned before, too high or too low cortisol can be a sign of a cortisol disorder.
And, as always, if your cortisol results come back normal, but you are still experiencing symptoms, be sure to go to a doctor to make sure nothing else is going on, or to help you pinpoint the root cause.