Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Stimulating Pleasure

By what mysterious processes does physical exercise have such an impact on the emotional brain ? This is a billion dollar question.

Naturally, there is, first of all, its effect on endorphins. These tiny molecules secreted by the brain resemble opium and its derivatives, such as morphine and heroin. 

The emotional brain contains many receptors for endorphins, and that's why it is so sensitive to opium -- it immediately radiates a sensation of well-being and satisfaction by hijacking one of the emotional brain's own intrinsic mechanisms. Opium has a powerful effect on emotions -- in fact, it's the strongest known antidote to the pangs of separation and mourning.

However, when derivatives of opium are used too often, they can become habit forming. Brain receptors become inured to them, so the dose must be systematically increased in order to produce the same effect. Moreover, because the receptors become less and less sensitive, regular pleasures lose all their power and potency -- including sex, the pleasures of which is often reduced to nothing in drug addicts. Even affected those patients who were on doctors prescribed drugs.  

The secretion of endorphins brought on by physical exercise does exactly the opposite. The more the natural mechanism of pleasure is gently stimulated by exercise, the more sensitive the mechanism itself becomes. In addition to relishing sex and life's other big pleasures, people who engage physical exercise regularly actually get more pleasure out of the little things in life : their friendships, their cats, their meals, their hobbies, or even the smiles of passerby in the street. Essentially, it becomes easier for them to be satisfied. And in fact, the experience of pleasure is just the opposite of depression.

Depression is defined, above all, by the absence of pleasure ,more so than by sadness, which is probably the reason why the release of endorphins has such a potent antidepressant and anxiolytic effect.

Stimulating the emotional brain by these natural processes also kindles the  immune system. It promotes the proliferation of those so-called "natural killer" cells, making them more aggressive against infections and cancer cells. [ " EMOTIONS PROFOUND INFLUENCE BODY FUNCTIONS . "NATURAL KILLER" CELLS OF THE IMMUNE SYSTEM ARE THE FIRST LINE OF DEFENSE of the body. Like many other physiological functions, they are under the control of the emotional brain. Positive emotions such as peacefulness and well-being stimulate these cells. Stress, anxiety, and depression interfere with their function. Natural smaller killer cells converge are attacking a larger cancer cell. ]
The opposite effect occurs with heroin addicts, whose immune defenses collapse, often causing them to become gravely ill. 

Exercise may also strengthen another physiological mechanism related to emotional health. This mechanism involves what we have already learned about heart rate variability. People who exercise regularly show a greater variability in heart rate and more coherence than people who do not. This means that their parasympathetic system , the physiological "brake" that brings on  periods of  calm , is healthier and stronger , A good balance between the two branches of the autonomic nervous system is one of the best potential antidotes to anxiety and panic attacks. All the symptoms of of anxiety start with an overactive sympathetic system -- a dry mouth ( cellular dehydration ongoing ), accelerated heartbeat, sweating, trembling, a rise in blood pressure (also another cellular dehydration ongoing). The sympathetic and parasympathetic systems are always in opposition. Thus, the more stimulation the parasympathetic branch receives, the stronger it becomes -- like a developing muscle. When it is strong enough, it simply blocks the symptoms of anxiety. 

A new treatment for depression is under experimentation in major centers for biological psychiatry around the world. A device implanted under the skin stimulates the parasympathetic system.This treatment of the future requires no effort from the patient. It is able to bring on the benefits effects of the parasympathetic system.  Very promising. I personally think that physical exercise and the practice of  cardiac coherence may produce exactly the same outcome, provided that patients are still motivated enough to undertake the exercises and drink enough water daily with sea salt. 


Millions of Citizens try drugs or talk therapy to relieve depression and anxiety, but recent scientific studies prove certain alternative treatments can work as well or better-often bringing on a cure.

In the extraordinary international bestseller The Instinct to Heal, award-winning psychiatrist and neuroscientist David Servan-Schreiber, M.D., Ph.D., presents seven natural approaches, each with proven results, that together form a treatment plan that builds on the body's relationship to the brain, yielding faster, more dramatic, and permanent changes. People who want to leave suffering behind now can live joyful, happy lives.

Click Here ,  If you Want To Read from Cover Page to Page 53 only 

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