Display Mode:

    Main content

    Health Information



    Cortisol is a hormone produced by the adrenal glands, which are located just above the kidneys. Cortisol affects almost every organ in the body and is important for body functions such as breaking down glycogen and fat for energy, managing stress, and maintaining blood pressure.

    Cortisol levels increase when the pituitary gland in the brain releases another hormone called adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH). Cortisol levels also rise during times of stress.

    Current as of: November 20, 2015

    Author: Healthwise Staff

    Medical Review: E. Gregory Thompson, MD - Internal Medicine & Alan C. Dalkin, MD - Endocrinology

    This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated, disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Learn how we develop our content.

    © 1995-2016 Healthwise, Incorporated. Healthwise, Healthwise for every health decision, and the Healthwise logo are trademarks of Healthwise, Incorporated.