| The MindBodySpirit Connection
a new and comprehensive scientific and neurobiologic understanding of
the connection of mind, brain and body, and its interrelationship with
heredity and the environment, which permits a new way of understanding
symptoms, syndromes, illness and disease.
Scientific evidence continues to confirm that there is a spiritual dimension
to the connection and that spirituality and religion may be beneficial
to health. The appropriate term is the MindBodySpirit Connection. It is
no longer appropriate to separate mind from body, mind from gut or mindbody
from spirit. The MindBodySpirit Connection
is central and common to all medical and healing traditions.
plays the central role of translating the content of the mind – perceptions,
thoughts, beliefs, attitudes, hopes, memories, expectations, and emotions
– into patterns of nerve cell firing and chemical release. The mind/brain
connects with the body by way of three MindBodySpirit communication systems:
(1) the central nervous system (CNS), (2) the chemical messenger system
(CMS), and (3) the autonomic nervous system (ANS).
are also three subsystems, called the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal
axis (HPA axis), the Mind/Brain-Gut Connection and the pain
and symptom modulation systems.
with Heredity and Environment
(genetic factors) or early life events can alter the MindBodySpirit Connection
for the better or worse. One example of a genetic factor is a person’s
increased risk of developing high blood pressure if one parent is hypertensive.
Another is that irritable bowel syndrome
and fibromyalgia tend to run in
of the effect of an early life event is one’s increased likelihood of
developing irritable bowel syndrome or fibromyalgia
if there is a history of early life abuse (physical, sexual, or emotional).
factors that can trigger illness and disease include physical (e.g., infections,
hormones, and dietary substances) and social (e.g., interpersonal problems
and family conflict).