The Importance of the Stomach – Part 3, Nervous System

In American popular culture neurotransmitters are known as brain chemicals, since many mental health issues have been ascribed to an imbalance of these substances in the brain. What many do not know is that the nervous system in the gut – the enteric nervous system – uses all these same neurotransmitters. It is helpful to examine how they influence the gut as well as the mind, giving biomedicine a way to talk about integrated organ function as it is understood in Chinese Medicine.

The Importance of the Stomach – Part 2, Hormones

By expanding the concept of the stomach to encompass the functions of the entire digestive tract connections can be made with the idea of the Stomach in Chinese Medicine. The organs of the digestive system secrete a variety of hormones, many of which have effects on major endocrine glands or in the brain. Similar to how the Stomach functions in Chinese Medicine, these hormones control things like appetite, blood sugar, cardiovascular function, weight gain, muscle mass and bone density, mood disorders, and more. Understanding the digestive system from the more functional perspective of Chinese Medicine allows for greater flexibility in diagnosis and treatment.

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