Monday, March 10, 2014

Your biography becomes your biology

It is not pain that hurts us most. Emotional traumas play a very large role in creating chronic illnesses. I feel good to help my clients feel better, regain their health and fitness!

Our language is filled with expressions of how emotion affects the body: tension and stress gives me a knot in my stomach, overwhelming sadness makes me feel all choked up, a difficult person is a pain in the neck.
More seriously, a recent study showed that sudden emotional shock can cause heart attacks even in healthy people. Called “broken heart syndrome,” these heart attacks were related to the loss of a loved one, fear of an event or activity, or sudden accidents. Notably, most of the sufferers were women.
How does a fleeting feeling have lasting health effects? Research on this is still in its infancy, but there are at least four paths we already know about.

First is the general effect of stress, which triggers the adrenals to produce cortisol and adrenaline. Cortisol is very helpful in small doses (as part of the fight or flight response) but sustained high cortisol levels (the result of unremitting stress) have very destructive effects on the body, including weight gain, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, suppression of immune function and acceleration of aging. For more on cortisol, read our articles on adrenal fatigue.

Second is the effect of unresolved emotional issues on systemic inflammation. Medical research has recently implicated inflammation as a contributing factor in a host of diseases, including cancer, heart disease and Alzheimer’s. For more on systemic inflammation, read our informative articles.

Third is the effect of emotions on particular organs. Many alternative practitioners attribute illness in a specific organ to a specific cause. While this is controversial in Western medicine, it has been well documented in medical literature that “Type A” personalities have much higher rates of heart disease, and that women who suffered childhood sexual abuse have higher rates of dysmenorrhea and pelvic pain. The mechanism of action may be peptide chains formed as part of the biochemistry of emotion that bind to receptor sites in specific organs, a concept pioneered by the renowned biochemist Dr. Candace Pert. We believe many more links will be discovered as research in this area continues.

Fourth is the effect of emotions on behavior. The ACE Study revealed a cause and effect link between adverse childhood experience and negative health habits like drinking, smoking, overeating, and sexual promiscuity. The authors recognized these negative habits as self-medication for unresolved emotional pain. But over time the suppression of all that pain through these self-destructive habits has terrible consequences.

All retrieved from


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