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Ground Control to Major Tom

ICPA Chiropractic Newsletter Your Amazing Body #icpa4kids #truehealth #amazingnervooussystem #amazing

If someone asked you to name the two major control systems of the body, what would you say? You probably could come up with at least the first half, the nerve system. However, not as many would come up with the second half, the endocrine system.

The much-less-talked-about endocrine system consists of several small, oddly-shaped glands scattered throughout the body that produce and release chemicals called hormones that are responsible for a variety of body functions.

The nerve system and the endocrine system interact and both are vitally important to your physical and mental health because together they coordinate MOST of the body’s AMAZING functions. Both systems are also great communications networks. The nerve system transmits its messages by means of electrochemical impulses which travel quickly across nerves to the muscles and glands. The endocrine system uses chemical messengers, called hormones, which move through the bloodstream and reach every cell in the body.

One of the eight major glands of the endocrine system is called the thyroid. It’s an AMAZING butterfly-shaped organ that typically weighs less than an ounce and is found at the front of your throat, just below your Adam’s apple, with one “wing” on either side of your windpipe.

Your thyroid is pretty easy to find. You can feel it by gently putting your index finger on one side of your throat and your thumb on the other in the area of the Adam’s apple. Your thyroid is in that small space between your fingers. You can feel it move up and down when you swallow. Give it a try!

Your thyroid is responsible for your metabolism, that is how your body uses energy. Metabolism is the process by which the food you eat is transformed into energy. Whether it’s a carrot, a piece of pizza, or a chicken nugget, your body turns what you eat into energy that is needed and used by every cell in your body!! AMAZING! This energy is used throughout your entire body to keep many of your body’s systems working correctly.

The rate of metabolism is controlled by two specific hormones that your thyroid produces: thyroxine (say: thy-rock-seen) and triiodothyronine (ok that’s a big one! Say: try-eye-o-doe-thy-row-neen). Every cell in the body needs thyroid hormones to work efficiently and your thyroid is up to the task. Your thyroid produces 100% of the body’s supply of thyroxine but only 20% of triiodothyronine. The other 80% is made from thyroxine in other body tissues. Isn’t it AMAZING how your body supplies everything your body needs!?!

But your cells can’t work properly without your thyroid. And your thyroid can’t work properly without the endocrine system’s partnership with the nerve system. And your nerve system can’t work properly without a clear connection to your brain.

Sometimes, misalignments of the bones of the spine distort communication within the nerve system (called vertebral subluxation). As you can imagine this has a downward spiraling effect. If the nerve system doesn’t communicate properly, the endocrine system may not work properly, then the thyroid can’t produce the proper quality or quantity of hormones, then the individual cells of the body don’t have the proper amount of energy.

Your family chiropractor can help you with that. He or she will check your spine for vertebral subluxation and adjust you when necessary. This will ensure that your nerve system can control your thyroid and your metabolism and all of the other AMAZING functions of your body.

An airplane flying in the air is only as good as its control center on the ground. Make sure your control center is working at its best by seeing your family chiropractor regularly.

—By Judy Nutz Campanale, DC, ACP


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