Wednesday, 17 November 2010

venus on fire, mars on ice

John Gray on stress, hormones and health, oxytocin and testosterone.
Oxytocin is the unconditional love giving hormone.  Women's stress levels go down and they are happier when they can give unconditional love.  And stress stops women being able to give unconditional love.  The world is not set up for this!  When cortisol levels are high consistently, the immune system is compromised.  Oxytocin lowers stress response and cortisol levels in a woman, but apparently it works differently in men.  It seems testosterone rather than oxytocin lowers stress in a man's body.  Here John Gray explains the importance of men relaxing watching whatever they like to watch  to rebuild their testosterone levels.

In the workplace women's cortisol levels are on average twice as high as a male's - apparently its a new phenomenon, women are overwhelmed.  The typical competitve, adenaline- driven workplace is testosterone rather than oxytocin driven.

The amygdala releases dopamine, in a man it's twice as  big as in a woman and it releases dopamine in time of real emergency.  A woman's brain releases dopamine in response to much smaller stimuli and is propelled to do things all the time.  If a man is expected to do this he gets worn out, because he needs time to relax to make testosterone - he needs to make thirty times as much testosterone as women.

It's important to understand women's need to make oxytocin and men's need to make testosterone, then everyone can be a lot healthier and happier.

For women, to make oxytocin anything that allows her to experience rhythm, support, freedom of expression and giving unconditional love helps.  This is why when a woman is stressed  she is driven to give more.  This works as long as she has a lifestyle which supports oxytocin levels which is not always the case in modern life - but this can change.

When there is trust, women open up, their oxytocin levels rise and men's testosterone levels rise in response, leading to lasting passion between them.  When women look after men they love them, but with a mother's love.  When men make fun of women it does not boost oxytocin levels!

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