Are you aware of the hormone that manages the salts and water content in your body? If you aren’t, let’s tell you it is aldosterone. This hormone also excretes potassium out of your body and helps to maintain blood pressure in the body.
But if you develop an imbalance, you might develop health disorders such as high blood pressure, cardiovascular diseases, chronic kidney disease, coronary artery disease, etc. For that, you need to know how you can keep this hormone in the normal range.
Keep reading this article to get insights into aldosterone.
Aldosterone is a mineralocorticoid hormone that our body produces to regulate sodium and water and excrete potassium out of our body, which increases our blood pressure. It is produced by the adrenal gland.
This hormone follows a pattern daily. It is produced during your sleep and ends in the early morning (before cortisol rises) and excretes the potassium out of your body. It works opposite to the hormone atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP) that is produced by the heart to excrete sodium out of your body to lower your blood pressure. That’s how both hormones maintain blood pressure.
If you have a hormonal imbalance (both high and low aldosterone) it can lead to health disorders. So, that’s why it is important to keep this hormone in a normal range.
Function of Aldosterone
Aldosterone’s main function is to maintain sodium and water levels in your body and excrete the potassium out to maintain blood pressure.
When the cells of the kidneys feel that the body has low blood pressure in the blood flow, they make angiotensin 1. This angiotensin-converting enzyme then converts into angiotensin 2 which triggers the adrenal glands to produce aldosterone in the bloodstream.
Aldosterone hormone then increases the salts and water reabsorption into the bloodstream. This signals the kidney increasing blood volume by storing water and sodium (from salt) in the blood flow, leading to a rise in blood pressure. That’s how it helps to maintain blood pressure in the body. This system is called the renin-angiotensin-aldosterone system.
What happens when the body has elevated levels of aldosterone?
If your body has elevated levels of aldosterone, it can increase the amount of sodium and water stored in your body which can lead to problems such as high blood pressure, a decrease in the levels of potassium which leads to muscle weakness or spasms, tingling, temporary paralysis, and an increase in blood volume.
It can lead to a hormonal disorder known as hyperaldosteronism which increases the production of aldosterone in the body. This can lead to heart disease, stroke, or kidney failure if not treated on time.
What happens when the body has low levels of aldosterone?
If your body has low levels of aldosterone, it can cause a rare disease called Addison’s disease. This disease makes the adrenal gland lose its ability to produce aldosterone, which causes dehydration, low blood pressure, low sodium levels, fatigue, diarrhea, decreased body hair, and a high potassium level.
How can you maintain aldosterone levels in your body?
To maintain the aldosterone levels in your body, follow these steps:
- Eat a nutrient-rich diet to help you maintain a healthy body weight and lower your blood pressure. If your aldosterone levels are high eating a low sodium diet to avoid further complications.
- Get regular exercise or walk for at least 30 minutes to maintain your blood pressure.
- Reduce your intake of alcohol and caffeine or caffeine-containing products in case you have high blood pressure problems. Alcohol reduces the effects of blood pressure medications.
- Quit smoking because it raises your blood pressure or heart rate. It also increases the risk of heart disease or stroke without raising blood pressure.
- Take medication on time to avoid further complications.
- In case of low aldosterone levels, eat a diet that has high sodium to increase the aldosterone levels.
Like other hormones, aldosterone is an important hormone in your body that helps to regulate water and salt levels in the body. So, follow a healthy lifestyle and diet to maintain its levels for a healthy life.
Want to know about the treatments for elevated levels of aldosterone?
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