Hormones are messengers, carrying signals to coordinate a range of bodily functions, including growth, sexual reproduction, stress regulation, and metabolism. The endocrine system is traditionally tested through blood, but blood serum levels of certain hormones can be reliably estimated through secreted fluids such as saliva or urine. Saliva allows for testing of the free proportion of a hormone. This is the most bioavailable proportion of a hormone; indeed, research on athletes has shown that free cortisol is a better predictor than total hormone levels obtained from plasma.
This holds for other hormones than cortisol, too. The assessment of metabolic equilibrium through the testosterone:cortisol ratio is better quantified by using the hormones’ biologically active components obtained from saliva than by using the total hormone levels obtained from plasma.
At Persometrics, we believe that knowledge about your body is key to optimal health. We provide research-based indexes for your personal education and empowerment. It is important to note that Persometrics does not offer medical advice. Never avoid or delay speaking to a health care professional due to information you obtain through this website or our services in general.
Biomarker testing of the stress hormone cortisol gives an insight into adrenal fatigue, high stress-levels as well as irregularities of the Hypothalamic Pituitary Adrenal (HPA) axis. Using scientifically validated methods quantifying hormone imbalances, Persometrics calculates early predictors of stress-related illnesses such as burnout. We therefore recommend testing for cortisol imbalances for anyone who undergoes high levels of stress in their personal or professional life, or anyone concerned with high stress levels. Be sure to take the stress and burnout questionnaires on this website to check if you are at risk. See all our Stress Profiling test-kits
Monitoring of hormone levels can also be of great interest to athletes or anyone doing exercise, due to the strong link between sports and the pituitary. For instance, there is a strong link between muscle and bone mass and testosterone (positive impact) and cortisol (detrimental impact), which makes it of importance for anyone performing high-resistance exercise to monitor both these hormones. The cortisol:testosterone ratio can be tracked in order to pin-point the best time slots for exercises, or to monitor and optimise your work-out intensity. See our Hormone test-kits for sports.
Finally, specific biomarker tests can be useful depending on specific needs. Perhaps you came to this website after reading about symptoms elsewhere. We have also listed certain symptoms associated with high or low hormone levels in the Specific Biomarker Tests.
Whichever test you choose, you will receive sampling vials to your home. You can conveniently provide the samples of saliva, and then send these by post to our lab using the envelope included in the package. Instead of your name, you will use a randomly generated anonymous code, so that there is no risk of sensitive data getting into the wrong hands should something happen to your shipment, and you can rest assured that any link between your data and your personal information will be destroyed as soon as you have received your test results. Since postal services differ across countries, and since you may want to ship from a different country than that of your delivery address, you will have to get your own stamp for the return to the lab in Germany. However, the pack normally goes as a letter, since it is less than 2cm wide (size B5).
With your results, you will receive your raw scores and an overview of the scores in relation to your population norms. In the test-kits from the Sports and Stress Profiling ranges, scores will be transformed into indexes where applicable, and you will receive a report explaining what your results mean in relation to health. These reports will also contain a more in-depth analysis with scientific references, in case you wish to learn more about how any indexes were calculated and where our information is taken from. Finally, reports from the Stress Profiling and Sports ranges include a personalised section with information on what is likely to be helpful for people with your adrenal profile. This information, which is not a replacement for medical assessment, is based on the latest science as is meant as a tool for personal entertainment, education, and empowerment..
The Persometrics Stress Hormone Profile is recommended for anyone who is concerned about their stress-levels, or anyone who feels they are undergoing high amounts of pressure at home or at work. The stress hormone that is used for the indexes, cortisol, is linked to a range of other wellness complaints. For this reason, if you are feeling lethargic, have high cholesterol levels, or having problems losing weight (especially if you have fat around the abdomen), it is recommended to check for abnormal levels of cortisol, since these may be tied to your symptoms. High levels of cortisol can also have a negative impact on sex drive and reproductive systems, so this test can also be relevant for anyone who is having difficulties with reduced interest in sex, with impotence or problems conceiving a child.
Chronic stress is linked to a range of symptoms, but the impact can occur slowly without the individual realising before it’s too late. HPA-axis dysfunction is common after prolonged chronic stress, and research now shows that burnout is preceded by certain detectable patterns of cortisol secretion. Based on this research, Persometrics provides early indicators of stress-related illnesses such as burnout by the use of saliva testing in the comfort of your own home.
The Persometrics Extended Stress Hormone Profile adds to the Persometrics Stress Hormone Profile in two ways. First, more samples are obtained to obtain a diurnal pattern of the hormone secretion, and second, another biomarker of stress is sampled: alpha-amylase. This hormone is secreted following activation of the sympathetic nervous system (SNS). By assessing activation of the two main stress responses simultaneously (the SNS and the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal, HPA), an asymmetric relationship between the two stress response systems can be assessed, which gives an added scientific index for your report. The fact that the diurnal pattern is assessed means that you can monitor your total cortisol secretion, and see whether your cortisol levels are high throughout the day. This could be of interest to anyone who wants to monitor activities that keep stress levels high, say, in the afternoon. The report will also quantify, and show you graphically, your recovery slope across the day. This slope is a second indicator of HPA-axis dysfunction.