Human Health and the Mind-Body Term Paper

Download this Term Paper in word format (.doc)

Note: Sample below may appear distorted but all corresponding word document files contain proper formatting

Excerpt from Term Paper:

When that process is reduced, many physical ailments have the opportunity to develop in organs that are not functioning optimally because of the reduction in the rate and efficiency of cellular repair. Similarly, the bones themselves can become more fragile and easily fractured because natural bone loss continues while cellular repair and new bone-cell formation slows (Sarno, 1998).

Body fat storage typically increases during prolonged periods of exposure to stress because one of the necessary physiological responses during the evolutionary development of the species was the ability to store calories in times of food resource scarcity (Reding & Wijnberg, 2001). In modern times, the body cannot distinguish between general mental stress and mental stress caused by famine; and as a result, hormones and enzymes responsible for breaking down and burning consumed food calories for energy are reduced while those responsible for ensuring long-term survival in terms of food shortages increase. In modern times, that is one reason why mental conditions such as clinical depression often also result in unwanted weight gain. The other reason is that increased appetite is another part of the physiological response to stress, since consuming as many calories as possible is strategically important in times of famine (Reding & Wijnberg, 2001).

Finally, there are also psychosomatically caused physical ailments associated with mental stress. Some of the most common include lumbar back strains and other skeletal tissue problems such as carpal tunnel syndrome and temporomandibular joint syndrome (TMJ) because those disorders are largely caused by reduced blood flow to the large muscles of the lower back, the tendons of the arms, and other connective tissues, such as those of the jaw muscle attachments (Sarno, 1998). That is why anxiety and stress often cause muscle spasms and discomfort related to skeletal structures. Likewise, chronic anxiety can be the cause of digestive disorders resulting from inefficient digestive processes and other physiological changes in acid and digestive enzyme secretions (Riggs & Foa, 2009). In all of these conditions, it is important to note that the physical symptoms of disease caused or triggered by mental states are no less "real" than diseases and conditions resulting organically without any connection to psychological stress (Sarno, 1998).

The Influence of Physical Body on Mental Health

The connection between mind and body also works in the other direction as well. Various physical conditions can be the principal cause of psychiatric ailments just as mental conditions can cause physical symptoms and ailments of the body (

Probst, 2010). In that regard, physical conditions that cause chronic pain are often the cause of clinical depression, as are other physical ailments that detract from the perceived quality of life (Reding & Wijnberg, 2001). Memory is also affected by long-term physical ailments because the long-term stress associated with physical discomfort triggers certain aspects of sympathetic nervous system response outlined earlier (Reding & Wijnberg, 2001). Since memory processes are not ordinarily required during emergency or immediately stressful situations, blood flow changes in the brain increase cerebral activity in some areas while decreasing it in other areas, such as those responsible for memory processes (Gerrig & Zimbardo, 2008).


Today, physicians understand that the influence of the mind is so important that questions relating to the patients' state of mind are part of routine diagnostic inquiries, precisely because of the mind-body connection. The failure to consider possible psychological factors can result in missed diagnosis or the prolonged treatment of the physical symptoms of a medical problem instead of treating their underlying psychological cause. That makes appreciating the mind-body and body-mind influence a significant factor in modern healthcare and medical treatment of both physical and mental ailments.


Archer, R. (2005). "Hospitals design stress-reduction treatment to speed recovery."

Westchester County Business Journal. Accessed online January 16, 2012 from HighBeam Research:

Gerrig, R, and Zimbardo, P. (2009). Psychology and Life. New York: Allyn & Bacon.

Probst, T.M. "Multi-level models of stress and well-being." Stress and Health, Vol. 26

(2010): 95 -- 97.

Reding, K. And Wijnberg, M. "Chronic Stress: A Conceptual Perspective" Families in Society, Vol. 82, No. 4 (2001): 345-354.

Riggs, D. And Foa, L. (2009). Psychological Treatment of Posttraumatic Stress Disorder and Acute Stress Disorder. (In Oxford Handbook of Anxiety and Related Disorders, Antony, M.M. And Stein, M.B. editors,…[continue]

Cite This Term Paper:

"Human Health And The Mind-Body" (2012, January 18) Retrieved October 21, 2016, from

"Human Health And The Mind-Body" 18 January 2012. Web.21 October. 2016. <>

"Human Health And The Mind-Body", 18 January 2012, Accessed.21 October. 2016,

Other Documents Pertaining To This Topic

  • Mind Body Connection W Learning This

    Everything came together including previous experience, memories, brain signals, and emotion to produce that churning in the stomach that told them, in an instant, to go. Those who hesitated and waited for more input signals, unfortunately, perished. If you follow that leap of faith into intuition and gut feeling, then you realize that their brains had "learned" that it didn't need layers of data to reach a decision. It

  • Mind Body Connection the Human Brain Is

    Mind Body Connection The human brain is one of the most complex organs within the human body -- indeed, one of the most multifaceted mysteries in the universe. Within this organ we have the basis for cognition, brain chemicals only now being unraveled and the Mind-Body connection that acts as a template for every aspect of the individual. Indeed, even in the 21st century, science is just now beginning to understand

  • Mental Health Policy a Healthy Body Keeps

    Mental Health Policy A healthy body keeps a healthy mind is a universal proverb applicable to people of all times. Mental illness not only harms the person himself but also the ones who are closely associated with him. The number of mentally ill people is increasing across the globe and there is serious need to devise an effective policy to control this situation. An abusive, compelling and dominating behavior in a dating

  • Health of Indigenous Australian Using Ecological and

    Health of Indigenous Australian Using Ecological and Holistic Health Paradigm Patterns of health and illness Physical Health Mental Health Spiritual Health Social Health Impact of Broader Environments Natural Built Social Economic Political Critical Reflection Health is a basic component of human life that comprises of multiple facets. The description of health has witnessed dramatic change during past few years, as it has become a holistic phenomenon. Previously, it was considered that a healthy person is the one who does not suffer from any

  • Health My Definition of Health

    Since being healthy includes a sound mind, less worrying over financial problems leads to a stronger, sounder mind. Drinking a lot of water throughout the day is another health-promoting behavior. Drinking a lot of water adds natural moisture to your skin, giving a fresh glow today and helping the aging process tomorrow. It also helps when I exercise to drink more water because being properly hydrated during exercise allows me

  • Mind and the Brain There Are Several

    Mind and the Brain There are several theories that have been proposed for explaining the relationship between one's mind and brain. If truth be told, it can be said that it is one of the most talked about philosophical fields. Mind vs. Brain Mind and brain are interrelated. For a majority of people, there is no difference between the two. Many scientists and philosophers hold the belief that the brain and the mind

  • Human Papilloma Virus Vaccine Human Papilloma Virus

    Human Papilloma Virus Vaccine Human Papilloma Virus The paper deals with HPV epidemiology and associated diseases, the licensed HPV vaccines, recommendations of ACIP, concerns on mandating the HPV vaccine among young girls and the personal perspective on HPV vaccination issue. The Human Papilloma Virus infection is incredibly high and almost 80% of the population is expected to get infected with the virus at any stage of life. The virus is normally cleared

Read Full Term Paper
Copyright 2016 . All Rights Reserved