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Monday, September 04, 2006

Holistic Health - The Stress Response

The mind is the first to perceive a stressor and formulate the response to that perceived stress. An environmental stimuli is perceived and translated according to the individuals conditioning and background. This may result in a direct physcial response, or an emotional response. In either case, the hypothalamus is stimulated, which then stimulates the posterior hypthalamus which in return has a direct affect upon the pituitary gland throught the release of CRF and TRF hormones which in turn stimulate the pituitary gland to secrete ACTH, TTH, and ADH. According to the text, the hypothalmic secretions are linked to the limbic sytstem and the cortex, which forms the basis of the connection between emotions and psychosomatic disease. The ACTH then stimulates the adrenal gland (which is divided into the adrenal medulla and the adrenal cortex). The adrenal cortex is the segment responsible for increased blood glucose...once the ACTH stimultes the adrenal cortex, it secretes cortisol and aldosterone. The cortisol increases the availability of energy needed during the “fight or flight” response by increasing liver functioning which is responsible for the production of glucose through the availabe glycogen and amino acids available in the body while decreasing the amount of glucose used by the muscles and fatty tissues.

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