New advances in technology accelerate our awareness about the world around and within us. Whether on the micro or macro level, these advances give insight into varying realms of possibility and wonder.
The specifics regarding the link between our mind and body is somewhat of a mystery amongst the general populace. Where some people identify our psychology and physiology as being two separate entities without a second thought, others feel differently. Whether through a pursuit of information, anecdotal or factual, many see our minds and bodies as being hyper-connected and very much a product of each other.
Recently, further developments have been made in our knowledge of the mind/body connection, more specifically how our mind states affect our organs and bodily functions. The results, provided by The University of Pittsburgh, have increased our awareness regarding the matter, with isolated experiments showing how the cerebral cortex is cognitively and neurologically linked with specific organs; in this case the adrenal medulla, an organ that responds to stress.
The findings in this study show that there are cortical regions in the brain that directly control the response from the adrenal medulla. The more regions of the brain that have neural pathways to the medulla, the more tailored the stress response is via physiological reactions such as sweating and heavy breathing. This tailored response is based on the cognitive image we have in our minds, and how our minds address that image the way it sees fit.
What It Means for the Future
What this tells us is that our cognition is not just simply how our brains are operating. It reveals how our brains are operating and to what capacity they are serving the vital parts of our body. It is well known that those who meditate, practice yoga, and exercise have more grey matter in their brain, which is pivotal to mitigating stress, anxiety, and depression. Dreams can be so real and vivid, and create physiological reactions like sweating and an increased heart rate.
Books like “How to Stop Worrying and Start Living” by Dale Carnegie have depicted evidence on how worry wreaks havoc and can cripple our health if it goes unchecked. Psychosomosis treatment is very prevalent in modern medicine where the placebo and nocebo effect have high usage rates as well as rates of success. All further evidence that our mind constructs and states are very powerful in spurring physiological reactions whether positive or negative.
The world revolves around individuals functioning at peak performance. With new findings such as the studies carried out from The University of Pittsburgh regarding the interconnectedness of mind and body health, new technologies will arise to optimize the relationship between the two. With so much being discovered every day about the human body, and tech growing exponentially, there is no doubt that humans of the future will want to be at peak performance mentally and physically and will be able to do so with the most sophisticated tools.