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BSc Body Science NZ


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Cortisol,  Fat Storage & Hydroxburn Clinical

What effect does day to day stress have on your fat levels???


The effects of stress on cortisol release and associated fat storage are complicated and profound, Bodyscience have released a fantastic podcast that is well worth listening too.


Here is a summary with some additional information added.

Guest Speaker:   

  • Dr Chris McLellen (@thedrmac)
    • PhD Exercise and Sports Science
    • Masters degree Physiotherapy
    • Professor of Exercise & Sports Science University of Southern Queensland
    • Internationally accredited Olympic Weightlifting; Sports Power; S & C Coaching
    • Cert III & IV Fitness
    • 25 Years experience working with NRL; AFL & Pro rugby
    • Research has resulted in 90 PUBLISHED Journals, public abstracts and presentations internationally


 “why I feel that I am in a position where I can talk about cortisol is that I have a PHd and that PHd did investigate cortisol adaptations in elite athletes, rugby players, to training, travel, competition, sleep, a whole lot of stuff.

 I tracked them for years.  I’ve done thousands of tests.”


Dr Chris McLellan – BSc Podcast

                            .... he walks the talk and is one jacked dude 😊



What is Cortisol:

In lay terms, Cortisol is a hormonal response by the body to stress. 

Stress can be acute or chronic, acute being the sudden onset caused by a drastic event such as a car crash or being attacked – chronic being ongoing such as life stressors such as work, bills, relationships, comp prep.


To manage our response to stress, our body releases the cortisol hormone, ultimately it is there as a survival mechanism, however our body doesn’t differentiate between chronic and acute.  While cortisol should decrease throughout the day, it does have peaks and valleys, and with chronic type stressors, the day to day stuff, our body does not differentiate well and develops the acute stress responses of higher cortisol release.

This leads to excess cortisol floating around in our system, developing cortisol dysfunction, resistance and inflammation.


How Cortisol is meant to work on a day to day basis:

Cortisol assists in waking us in the morning and getting going (CAR – Cortisol Awakening Response), after a short period it should decrease, and we should be running off our own steam. 

“Cortisol is not something you can escape.  It’s a natural part of daily function.  So, it’s like taxes…… you don’t want to pay any more tax than you have to. 

So that’s why you find a good accountant and so they help you with your taxes”




Stress Free

Unfortunately, after a couple of hours, once we’ve done our morning training, gotten ready for work, kids to school etc, with the stress of life – our cortisol can remain elevated as the body continues to release it during the day in response to chronic stress.


Negative Effects:

  • Increased blood pressure
  • Slowing of metabolism
  • Craving of Sugars and Fats
  • Catabolism of extremity muscles
  • Compromise of immune system
  • Increase circulating glucose
  • Inhibits Glucogenesis (breakdown of non-carb sources into glucose)*

*Increased cortisol effects the conversion of fat into glucose and the uptake of fat energy into fat cells.

Where insulin transport energy into muscle cells to burn – Cortisol reduces that.
Where insulin transports triglycerides into fat cells – Cortisol enhances that.
  • This is particularly so for the visceral fat stored in our abdominal cavity surrounding our organs. These fat cells are high in Glucocorticoid receptors and receptive to cortisol driven fat storage, binding with cortisol preventing access to the energy supply and corresponding fat loss.
  • Once you have increased the number of cells you have……you have them for life!!
  • Visceral fat is approximately 10 -20 % of mens total fat, at 5-8% of womens.



Diurnal Effect

With prolonged elevated cortisol, resistance can occur which kind of flips our clock.  Cortisol is diurnal and should be a daytime hormone (who’s stressing when they’re asleep?), when it flips it keeps you awake at night and makes you sleepy and drowsy during the daytime.

Chronically elevated cortisol disrupts the negative feedback mechanism ….. so there is no OFF Switch to cortisol secretion. (Fries et al 2005. Norman & Hearing 2002)

“Cortisol on its own is not going to make you fat.  It will contribute to it 100%, NO QUESTION”


“There are some things that you can’t see like visceral fat.  I mentioned those receptors, those glucocorticoid receptors – fat cells have a lot of them, particularly visceral fat”


“there are direct links between fat gain, and particularly nasty fat gain, which is fat around your organs, which is visceral fat, and cortisol levels”




Hydroxyburn CLINICAL Key Ingredients:

  • Blueness (300mg daily dose)        
    • A form of Bavarian Lemon Balm extract (Melissa officinalis), clinically trialed dose
    • Lowers stress induced cortisol at high level of efficacy throughout the day
    • Supports mental focus and cognition from 30mins to 2 hours
    • Provides a calming effect with improved memory
    • When taken with caffeine containing herbs, has a synergistic effect to minimize jitteriness, brain fog and the sensation of stress.


  • Chromium (900mcg daily dose):
    • Essential nutrient required in carb, lipid and protein metabolism
    • Sugar balancing function, helps to drive blood sugar into mitochondria for fuel and energy
    • Reduces sugar cravings
    • Identified to regulate insulin by increasing the sensitivity of the insulin receptor.


  • Green Tea (25g daily dose)
    • Active ingredients are polyphenols (flavinoids, catechins and EGCG)
    • EGCG has been demonstrated to increase metabolic rate by 4% over a 24 hours period


  • Iodine (30mcg daily dose)
    • Aids in Thyroid function
    • Essential for manufacture of T3 and T4 Thyroid hormones which set the metabolic rate.




  • Clinical reduces cortisol, the obstacle to fat burning. 
  • Clinical enhances metabolism activity, burning more stored energy.
  • Clinical makes all fat burning activity work better, if the road blocks are gone your body will perform better at the fat burning processes - your hard training, clean diet and any other fat burners will function to a higher level.






Australian Standards

  • TGA – Therapeutic Goods Agency, issue AUSTL number, which shows standards and labeling compliance with ongoing testing and product stability
    • Product Stability references the ingredient strength is the same at the date of expiry as per label.
    • Safe does NOT equal Soft (or Weak)
    • Safe = QUALITY, as humans we should want to put the “safest” or highest quality ingredients into our body as possible to achieve the result we’re after.  No point smashing the gym, eating with discipline and then hamstringing our results by using less than effective supplements in your program.



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