Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Long Repressed Emotions Stored in the Body?

I read Candice Pert's (Ph.D. former NIH researcher, now Georgetown University research professor) book, Molecules of Emotion, over a year ago and was fascinated with the connections she found and the ones she hypothesized concerning emotions being stored in the body. I received a free magazine in the mail (who knows from what list I am on) recently, called "Experience Life" from the Lifetime Fitness company, which has a number of fitness, nutrition and healthy life articles. Among them was an article on how powerful long buried emotions can be released through exercise and also how some people in the field of mental health are focused on figuring out those connections. The Pert book was mentioned, as were a number of other people in the health and psychology fields.

In the distant past, I might have dismissed the speculations of some of those who might be working exclusively with this sort of thing, feeling they were on the radical fringe, but I am not so quick to dismiss anything like this these days, and especially so after reading the Pert book. I am convinced of the mind/body connection (stress, unhappiness etc. in the present) with illness and the immune system (including how thought affects recovery too!). It isn't so far a leap to consider that we might be storing long repressed emotions in the body as well as the subconscious. (Where is the subconscious? Lots of people speak as if it is entirely in the mind, but is it?... tangents for thought...)

Beyond the Pert book, a look at some articles and research can be found in the following links:

Norepinephrine Important In Retrieving Memories from Science Daily (2004)

Exercise Fuels the Brain's Stress Buffers from the APA (American Psychological Association)

'Good' Chemical, Neurons In Brain Elevated Among Exercise Addicts also from Science Daily (2003)

The magazine article: Laugh, Cry, Lift: Probing the Mysteries of the Fitness Floodgates

Molecules Of Emotion: The Science Behind Mind-Body Medicine by Candice Pert, PhD (1999)

A User's Guide to the Brain: Perception, Attention, and the Four Theaters of the Brain by John Ratey, MD (2002)

Somato Emotional Release: Deciphering the Language of Life by John Upledger, DO, OMM (2002)

The Emotional Brain: The Mysterious Underpinnings of Emotional Life by Joseph LeDoux, PhD (1998)

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