Well, technically it’s your nervous system (Brain, Spinal Cord and Peripheral Nerves) that control everything in your body. That doesn’t mean that the state of your body is only affected by your brain, there are external and independent factors like not drinking enough water or being in the sun too long. But how your body survives, maintains homeostasis and reacts to those externals factors is completely under the control of your brain.
You probably understand brain control of autonomic functions, e.g., breathing, heart rate, sweating, saliva, digestion, organ function, etc. And movement is clearly brain driven. But you may not have thought about the brains control of blood flow and therefore blood pressure, or sensory skills that affect you vision, balance, taste, hearing and smell.
But what about hormones? Hormonal control is largely regulated by the pituitary gland which sits behind the bridge of your nose. It’s called the master gland because its actions affect all the other glands. It’s directly controlled by the hypothalmus which is a critical part of your brain. To learn more read this article.
But what about my immune system? Long thought to function independently, the immune system is very much influenced by the brain. Studies have shown that a high spinal cord injury causes immune system suppression. Other studies have shown the ability to change an immune response by changing the brain’s perception of the situation.
If you look at the highly-interconnected twine ball that is the human body, it’s easy to pull on any string and declare it to be at the root of health. For example, it’s all about hormones, or diet, or exercise or cholesterol or sitting, and on and on. These things matter and are interconnected so you may benefit from addressing them independently. But if you know your brain is truly at rhe center of it all, can you really afford to ignore it’s influence and possible work against it?
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