Navigating Stress


In today’s fast-paced world, navigating stress is unavoidable. At Vytal Health, we recognize its impact on well-being. Explore stress, cortisol, control, and the vital role of self-care, perception, and mindset in effective stress management.

Understanding Stress:

Stress, in its various forms, affects everyone differently. It can stem from external factors such as work deadlines, financial pressures, or relationship challenges, as well as internal factors like negative self-talk and limiting beliefs. Recognizing the sources of stress is the first step toward developing a personalized approach to managing it.

The Role of Cortisol:

Cortisol, often referred to as the “stress hormone,” is a crucial steroid hormone produced by the adrenal glands, which are located on top of each kidney. Its role in the body is multifaceted, impacting various physiological processes. Primarily, cortisol plays a central role in the body’s response to stress by mobilizing energy reserves, increasing blood sugar levels, and modulating the immune system. Additionally, cortisol follows a diurnal rhythm, with levels typically peaking in the early morning to help kickstart the day and gradually decreasing throughout the evening to promote relaxation and sleep. While cortisol is essential for maintaining homeostasis, chronic elevation due to prolonged stress can have adverse effects on health, contributing to issues such as disrupted sleep, impaired immune function, and metabolic imbalances. Understanding and managing cortisol levels are crucial for achieving a balanced and resilient response to stress, promoting overall well-being.

To gain a comprehensive understanding of your unique stress physiology, our functional medicine doctors here at Vytal Health utilize advanced functional medicine testing, specifically saliva testing for cortisol levels at four distinct times throughout the day. This detailed testing approach allows us to assess your circadian rhythm and stress hormone secretion patterns, providing a nuanced view of your body’s stress response. Armed with these specific insights, our experienced team at Vytal Health can craft a personalized treatment plan tailored to your individual needs. This may involve lifestyle adjustments, targeted nutritional interventions, and the strategic use of supplements, all designed to address your unique cortisol profile. More information about cortisol can be found here.

What’s in Our Control:

At Vytal Health, we emphasize the importance of recognizing and focusing on what we can control. This includes our responses to stressors, our lifestyle choices, and our self-care practices. By adopting a proactive mindset, we empower ourselves to take charge of the aspects of our lives that we have influence over.

Radical Self Care:

One powerful tool in the battle against stress is radical self-care. This goes beyond the occasional spa day; it involves a comprehensive and intentional approach to caring for our physical, mental, and emotional well-being. This may include practices such as regular exercise, proper nutrition, adequate sleep, and mindfulness activities like meditation.

Perception and Mindset:

Our perception of stressors and the mindset we adopt can significantly impact how we experience and cope with stress. At Vytal Health, we work with our clients to shift their perspective on stress from being a threat to an opportunity for growth. By cultivating a positive mindset and reframing challenges as learning experiences, individuals can build resilience and better navigate the ups and downs of life.

Things Outside of Our Control:

While it’s crucial to focus on what we can control, it’s equally important to acknowledge and accept the elements of life that are beyond our control. Whether it’s a global crisis, unpredictable events, or the actions of others, understanding that not everything is within our power can be liberating. Vytal Health offers supportive strategies for managing these external factors without letting them overwhelm our well-being.

Supportive Strategies for Navigating Stress:

  • Mindfulness Practices: Engage in mindfulness and meditation techniques to stay present and calm in the face of uncertainty.
  • Seeking Support: Build a strong support system of friends, family, or professionals who can provide guidance and a listening ear during challenging times.
  • Adaptability: Develop adaptive coping mechanisms to navigate unexpected situations with grace and resilience.


At Vytal Health, we recognize stress as a constant in life, but our approach to navigating stress can shape our well-being. Empowering individuals to control what they can, prioritize radical self-care, and foster a positive mindset is our mission. By acknowledging and handling factors beyond our control with support, we pave the path to a healthier, more resilient life. Finally, while stress may persist, it doesn’t define our journey’s quality.