Who is This Test For?
Often we talk with our friends, family and health care professionals about feeling tired and burnt out when we’re otherwise moving right along and going about our daily lives, but yet we don’t feel optimal. In the fast-paced, stressful world we live in today, none of this is surprising. Our adrenal glands is where we produce Cortisol, the key “stress hormone,” and repeated or continuously high levels of it throughout the day may indicate and inability to adapt to continued stress.
The Adrenal Check measures the levels of the key stress hormone, Cortisol, over the course of a day as well as DHEA-S and the ratio between the two. When viewed together they can help us understand if there may be an imbalance in our adrenal function.
There’s a reason why people like this test: Because when it comes to assessing hormonal balance there’s an easy place to start, it’s with an Adrenal Check.
Cortisol levels typically follow a curve: They are at their highest in the morning and decline as the day continues. They may fluctuate high or low at any of the four measurement times throughout the day due to acute or chronic stress. Sustained high or low levels are often found in individuals with an imbalance in adrenal function.
DHEA is the most abundant circulating steroid hormone. We test DHEA-S, the sulfated form, whose levels are approximately three times greater than DHEA. This hormone plays an important role in the synthesis of our sex hormones, energy production and protection against the degenerative effects of aging
The Adrenal Check test provides the ratio between Cortisol and DHEA-S, an important indicator of the adrenal output of the two hormones.
Understanding the Cortisol / DHEA-S Ratio in Adrenal Check
When the body experiences chronic stress it begins to overproduce Cortisol at the expense of all the other steroidal hormones including DHEA and its metabolites, which include our sex hormones. This creates an elevated Cortisol to DHEA ratio. If the ratio is lower than normal (for a given age) and the DHEA-S level is within the normal range, it is probably due to the maintenance of DHEA-S output with advancing age. However, if the ratio for that age is lower than expected, it is probably due to high DHEA levels, low Cortisol, or both of these.