Close this search box.

10 Delicious Cortisol-Lowering Foods Than Can Help Eliminate Belly Fat

Get your health back on track with these cortisol-lowering foods!

If you’ve been feeling more stressed out than usual, you should know that it takes a toll on your physical well-being, not just your mental. And with the help of some experts, Nutrition In USA has figured out why!

Stress activates the production of the hormone called cortisol, which can leave you in a constant state of alert, otherwise known as that “fight or flight” feeling.

In the proper amounts, cortisol regulates almost every system in our body, including metabolism, mood, memory, immune function, and cognition. Yet, it can also damage all these systems if levels stay heightened for long periods of time.

And since we’re all about nutrition and healthier living, we wanted to know: Are there any cortisol-lowering food you can eat to reduce this stress hormone?

Turns out the answer is yes! So, we’ve come up with a list of 10 cortisol-lowering foods to reduce your body’s stress response!

Cortisol-Lowering Food
Photo by Danijela Maksimovic at Shutterstock

…But first, WHY is cortisol so important?

High cortisol levels are harmful to your health!

Before you stress out about being stressed all the time, it’s important to mention that cortisol spikes can be a good thing at times. Having high cortisol levels is an essential adaptive response, according to cardiologists.

We want a high cortisol level to wake up in the morning and deal with acutely stressful situations. But, when you have long-term chronic stress, something like serious financial troubles or being the only caregiver of a sick spouse, this can lead to physiologic impacts.

One of the most notable side effects of prolonged high cortisol levels is weight gain, specifically visceral fat. This fat wraps around the intestines, organs, and liver and is inflammatory fat.

It leads to insulin resistance and contributes to diseases like heart disease, high blood pressure, and even type 2 diabetes. According to an immunologist, cortisol can also strain the activity of specific cells linked to the immune system.

This lowers antibody production and can debilitate the body’s immune response over time. So what are some cortisol-lowering foods you can consume to stop this from happening?… Continue reading to find out!


This cortisol-lowering food is a natural antibiotic, antiviral, and antifungal agent. When garlic is crushed or chopped, it releases an amino acid compound known as allicin, which has been proven to lower cholesterol levels, regulate blood pressure, and, at times, improve muscle soreness.

On the stress side of things, researchers have discovered that raw and low-temperature garlic activated neuroprotective effects and significantly decreased stress-related hormones, including cortisol.

Dark Chocolate

Dark chocolate includes 50% to 90% cocoa solids, compared to milk chocolate, which contains as little as 10%. Cocoa flavanols, the chemicals in cocoa solids that bless this cortisol-lowering food with its health benefits, have been shown to lower blood pressure and potentially improve insulin sensitivity.

Furthermore, studies have found that consuming dark chocolate regularly can enhance gut microbiome diversity, improve mood, and lower cortisol levels and the inflammation caused by excess cortisol.


Ground flaxseed, or flax meal, is a fantastic source of fiber, lignans, and alpha-linolenic acid, the plant-based omega-3 fatty acid.

This cortisol-lowering food also has phytoestrogens, which can improve responses to stress by lowering blood pressure and cortisol and may offer defense against the narrowing of arteries.

Flaxseed might interact with medications with similar or opposing effects, so be sure to check in with your doctor before including flaxseed in your diet.

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Olive oil, specifically extra virgin olive oil, which is minimally processed and possesses more beneficial polyphenols than other forms, has considerable health benefits thanks to its potent anti-inflammatory influences.

Research has found that people who regularly consume this cortisol-lowering food tend to live longer and are less likely to succumb to heart disease, cancer, and other life-limiting conditions.

Some studies have also shown that olive oil decreases participants’ physical responses to stressful circumstances.

Research indicates that one component of olive oil known as oleuropein decreases blood pressure and is a potent antioxidant that can protect against diabetes, cancer, and Alzheimer’s disease.

So even if olive oil isn’t found to work directly in lowering cortisol, preventing serious chronic illness definitely helps reduce stress in the long run.

Cortisol-Lowering Food
Photo by Anna Shepulova at Shutterstock


Asparagus is a great source of glutathione, which is a mighty antioxidant that aids in neutralizing stress-causing free radicals and suppressing inflammation.

The body uses glutathione to detoxify chemicals like heavy pesticides, metals, and solvents that might be stored in fat cells.

Rutin, which is another flavonol found in this cortisol-lowering food, has been seen in animal studies to have numerous health benefits, including lowering cortisol levels. Steaming asparagus as briefly as possible will help maximize its phytochemical benefits.

Wild Salmon

Salmon is a rich source of omega-3 anti-inflammatory fatty acids. These help loosen the muscles and decrease the production of cortisol, helping to prevent the evolution of chronic conditions like high blood pressure and cardiovascular disease.

This cortisol-lowering food is generally lower in saturated fats and higher in omega-3s than farmed salmon and is frequently recommended for this reason.

Eating a diet that’s rich in foods like wild-caught salmon or supplementing with products like fish oil can help you keep cortisol levels in check.


Bananas are a fantastic source of magnesium, a nutrient necessary for normal cortisol levels, healthy blood pressure, and restful sleep.

This cortisol-lowering food also contains tryptophan, a forerunner for serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter that plays a crucial role in your disposition.

Analyses on pro cyclists using intense physical exertion to generate a stress response discovered that eating bananas afterward decreased cortisol and overall inflammation.


Onions are among the best foods that reduce cortisol levels and help you manage stress. They possess sulfur compounds that have been demonstrated to lower cortisol levels during stressful circumstances.

Besides this, this cortisol-lowering food contains quercetin and flavonoids, which are potent antioxidants. In animal studies, these veggies have been shown to enhance stress tolerance, reduce cortisol, and effectively fight off pathogens.


Turmeric is a powerful pain reliever, and it’s also anti-inflammatory used for thousands of years in Ayurvedic therapy to treat inflammatory conditions ranging from allergies to arthritis.

The active ingredient in this cortisol-lowering food, curcumin, is a phytochemical proven in some studies to decrease cortisol levels, although results have been mixed.

The ideal way to consume turmeric is with piperine, the active compound in black pepper because it makes the curcumin more bioavailable.

Cortisol Lowering Food
Photo by Zadorozhnyi Viktor at Shutterstock

Green Tea

Green tea is among the most popular dietary supplements for lowering cortisol levels. The distinct polyphenol in green tea, epigallocatechin gallate, is a strong anti-inflammatory that has been shown to calm the mind and body and can even help lower the risk of inflammatory diseases.

EGCG blocks the enzyme that alters the amino acid tyrosine into norepinephrine, an anxiety and stress-inducing hormone.

Researchers found that EGCG also hinders the activity of an enzyme that converts the cortisol precursor cortisone to cortisol, directly lowering cortisol levels.

How often do YOU consume these cortisol-lowering foods? Please feel free to share your thoughts on the matter in the comments section below.

And if you liked this article, we highly recommend you also read: 11 Genius Tips for Maintaining Dental Health With the Right Foods

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Follow us

This error message is only visible to WordPress admins
Error: Access Token is not valid or has expired. Feed will not update.