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How Your Automatic (Autonomic) Nervous System
           Affects Your Health
 

  by special guest author
Diane Smalley, L.Ac.

               Volume III # 48  Copyright 2013        All Rights Reserved


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Editor's Note   We're delighted to welcome new guest author, Diane Smalley, L.Ac., who has put together a wonderful reference we can use to know which of the two states our autonomic (or automatic, or reflexive) nervous system is operating in. 

This is so important because if we're stuck in one mode- the fight, flight or flee mode, or sympathetic response - we won't be able to digest, fight off infections or heal.

And if we're stuck in the other mode - the rest, recover and heal mode, or parasympathetic response  - we won't be able to mount effective action and 'rise to the occasion' when we need to.

We suggest you print out this article so you have it handy to refer to.

Diane is an experienced, licensed acupuncturist trained in Oriental herbal medicine, Jin Shin Jyutsu, CranioSacral Therapy, clinical nutrition and more. The information she offers here makes a significant contribution to the effectiveness of her work.

She can be contacted at  www.abundanthealthacupuncture.com                                                                                                        

                                                                        Pamela Levin, R.N., T.S.T.A., Editor

HOW YOUR AUTOMATIC NERVOUS SYSTEM AFFECTS YOUR HEALTH

The following chart shows the two actions of the autonomic (or automatic) nerve system. We pass through
these two phases as we respond to changes in the environment.

You are in the alarm, or sympathetic, or fight, flight, freeze phase when:

Your breathing rate and airway size increases;  bronchial muscles relax;  pupils dilate;  tear production decreases; distance vision is better than your near vision; mental concentration sharpens; small blood vessels constrict; blood pressure, heart rate and output, adrenal secretion of adrenaline, cortisol and DHEA all increase; goose pimples (erection of hair on skin) increases; skin blood vessels constrict (resulting in pallor); sweating increases; blood vessels in muscles dilate, muscles mobilize glycogen, endurance level increases, saliva production decreases; stomach blood vessels constrict; hydrochloric acid secretion, bile flow, gastric mobility & emptying all decrease; small intestine blood vessel size constricts; peristalsis (waves of movement for emptying) decreases; colon blood vessel size constricts, internal sphincter contraction increases; colon muscle tone, waves of movement & secretions, rectal sphincter contraction all decrease; contraction of urinary bladder increases while bladder wall relaxes; contraction of muscles in fallopian tubes & uterus increases while blood flow to genitals decreases; liver glycogen fuel mobilizes, blood sugar rises, blood coagulation increases and metabolism switches to breakdown-mode (also called catabolism.)

If your nervous system is stuck in this phase, you will likely have insomnia and be unable to heal.

You are in the rest, recover, repair, clean and heal phase when:

Your breathing rate and airway size decreases;  bronchial muscles constrict;  pupil size and tear production increases; near vision is better than distance; mental concentration relaxes; small blood vessels dilate; blood pressure, heart rate, heart output, adrenal secretion of adrenaline, cortisol and DHEA all decrease; goose pimples (erection of hair on skin) decreases; skin blood vessels relax (resulting in better skin color); sweating decreases; blood vessels in muscles normalize; muscle mobilization of glycogen decreases; endurance level normalizes, saliva production increases; stomach blood vessels relax; hydrochloric acid secretion, bile flow, gastric mobility & emptying all increase; small intestine blood vessel size relaxes; peristalsis (waves of movement for emptying) increases; colon blood vessel size normalizes; internal sphincter contraction decreases; colon muscle tone, waves of movement & secretions, rectal sphincter contraction all increase; contraction of urinary bladder relaxes while bladder wall contracts; contraction of muscles in fallopian tubes & uterus decreases while blood flow to genitals increases; liver glycogen fuel is conserved; blood sugar lowers, blood coagulation decreases and metabolism switches to building-mode (also called anabolism.)

If  your nervous system is stuck in this phase, you will likely be unable to mount an adequate response when a situation calls for it..

 As you can see, there are certain functions that work better - or only work - when we are relaxed.

                                    ***********************************************************

To assist you in bringing your automatic nervous system into a state of natural balance, one that supports your health and healing, you're invited to go to  http://www.youremotionalnutrients.com   and take advantage of the free emotional nutrient samples as many times as you like.

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Tags: nervous system autonomic nervous system sympathetic autonomic nervous system parts of the nervous system brain and nervous system parasympathetic nervous system

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