Lesson 3: RELATION MIND-BODY
The idea that our minds and emotions play a critical role in our health—a fundamental premise in integrative medicine—is far from new. Many ancient healing systems emphasize the interconnection between mind and body in healing, including Hippocrates, the father of Western medicine, who taught that good health depends on a balance of mind, body, and environment.
Modern scientific research supports this age-old tenet of medical wisdom. It began in the 1920s, when Harvard scientist Walter Cannon, MD, identified the fight-or-flight response through which the body secretes hormones called catecholamines, such as epinephrine and non-epinephrine. When they enter the blood stream, these hormones produce changes in the body—i.e. a quickened heart or increased breathing rate—that put the person in a better physical state to escape or confront danger.