Cortisol, a steroid, is secreted by the adrenal cortex. It acts on the kidneys or renal tubules to maintain the Na+– K+ balance. It is also involved in maintaining the cardiovascular system. In many species, cortisol is also responsible for triggering the processes involved in giving birth.
What happens when cortisol is too much in our body?
A condition called Cushing’s syndrome will cause when cortisol is a prolonged period of time. This can be caused by a wide range of factors, such as a tumour that produces adrenocorticotropic hormone
The symptoms include:
- rapid weight gain mainly in the face, chest and abdomen contrasted with slender arms and legs
- a flushed and round face
- high blood pressure
- muscle weakness