Monday, January 11, 2010


Chemical structure of cortisol.Image via Wikipedia
I hate cortisol

It serves its purpose, I suppose... as the so-called "stress hormone", it is excreted by the adrenal gland in response to stress and anxiety.  It has also been linked to weight gain, especially of the dreaded, heart-threatening "belly fat".

It has always been my dream to be one of those people who lost their appetite and shriveled up to nothing whilst enduring a stressful situation.  I am not one of them.  No, when the chips are down, they are literally so... as in, down the hatch.  Along with anything else even remotely considered to be edible.

And so, when my daughter was hospitalized with a life-threatening illness a few months back and remained so for three weeks, my adrenal glands and my appetite had a heyday.  The met, got married, and had babies... like, *millions* of babies, in the form of fat cells.  My diet of McDonald's and cafeteria monster cookies and Pepsi and Chinese take-out certainly fostered their romance, as did sleeping (or not) in a not-so comfortable recliner at my daughter's bedside.  And of course, good mother that I am, when the doctors admonished her to eat as many calories as she could in order to regain her strength, I took one for the team in demonstrating to her just how to accomplish that goal.

The worst part of cortisol is that it is sneaky.  You make it through the crisis, thank God for His providence and protection, life starts getting back to normal, and then one day you realize your clothes aren't fitting quite as they should and you step on the scale.  That is the moment you realize not only did the monster cookies and french fries and lack of sleep come back to bite you in the behind, they cemented themselves firmly to it.

Apparently my adrenal glands have convinced the rest of my body that we're in World War III and facing famine, therefore making it necessary to stock the bunker with groceries.  LOTS of groceries. 

They will be in for a surprise when they realize this girl didn't fall off the turnip truck yesterday.  Having been around this block before, I have plenty of weapons in my arsenal...  and those misbegotten fat cells are already packing their bags.  It is, in fact, a war...

and they're toast.

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