Day 7

The Spice of Life

The Internal Environment That Shapes Behavior

F**k you, hormones!

—Ben Stone

Today you’ll tame:

  • Peptides, lipids, and monoamines (the little !@#$ers)
We never knew why, and we probably never will (since nobody ever dared to ask), but one day, out of the blue, one of the women who worked at the office suddenly pelted her full cup of coffee at the window, narrowly missing my friend Marcella’s head before smashing right through the plate glass. Then she sat down and got right back to work, like nothing had happened.
Nothing seemed to have set her off, and she never explained herself afterward. It was utterly mental!
Or was it?

There are so many hormones coursing through our bodies, 24/7, that it would take an entire book just to list them all, with a full explanation of what each one does. But here’s a quick rundown: Some of them will make you sleepy, some will make you run away, and some will make you bloat with water. Some will cause you to eat more. Some will get you feeling sexy, and some will get you ready to give birth. Some will cause you to grow a beard and others will cause you to grow breasts. Some will make you happy, some will make you sad. There are some that can reduce pain and some that will impede your immune system’s ability to fight disease.

Some of the time, you may be able to control these hormones by taking medication from your doctor, or by changing what you eat, how you exercise, sleep and generally live your life. Other times, ...

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