HPA axis discussion

RuthAnn

Well-Known Member
I would like to start this thread with the fact that the hypothalamus is not protected by the blood brain barrier. Here's is a quotation from a university paper expanding on that.

"There are regions of the brain that lack a blood-brain barrier. These are in brain regions that are responsible for sensing the internal melieu of the body (such as serum osmolarity) or in areas that are involved in either sensing hormone levels or releasing hormonal factors into the blood stream. In the former category are areas such as the subfornical organ or the area postrema of the brain stem. The infundibulum of the hypothalamus and the pituitary gland are examples of the latter category. Releasing factors enter the capillaries of the infundibulum and travel to the anterior pituitary gland where they influence the release of the trophic hormones. This circulation from the hypothalamus to the pituitary gland is called the hypothalmo-hypophyseal portal system and contains fenestrated capillaries."
 

RuthAnn

Well-Known Member
The hypothalamus connects the endocrine system to the nervous system, and so it needs to be able to sense neurotransmitters in order to know what to secrete.

The posterior pituitary, which also is not protected by the BBB, is the area through which oxytocin and vasopressin are released.

I am looking for types of tissue damage or toxin/pathogen build up that can cause problems in this axis.

The toxin/pathogen is very interesting because of the high frequency of DI or DI type symptoms being reported in people with viral and bacterial diseases.

Any input is appreciated.
 

RuthAnn

Well-Known Member
These are the herbs for the axis for hypothalamus/pituitary/adrenals, and therefore DI.

There is a group for inhibiting the function and a group for increasing the function. I found that reishi has a very good effect for me with respect to not having to wake up as frequently during the night to use the bathroom, so I look at the herbs in that category.

While cordyceps improves energy levels for many people, it did not help me in any way and even made me feel worse, which I consider a confirmation that I need to chose from the herbs that increase function.


Home > Examination and Diagnosis > Chinese Herbs with Hormonal Effects

Chinese Herbs with Hormonal Effects

In traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), the kidney system has a wider function than that of the Western anatomical kidney, regarding it as the root of life and the origin of our individuality as human beings. TCM considers the kidney to be the most important organ of the body since it performs functions pertaining to the genital, urinary, endocrine, skeletal, blood, and central nervous systems.
One of the main tasks of the kidney in TCM is controlling the growth and development and reproduction of the body. Besides the sex glands, other endocrine glands like hypothalamus, pituitary, adrenal and thyroid are all involved actively in the growth and development of the body, as a result, according to the TCM understanding of the kidney, the modern concept of the endocrine system belongs to part of TCM kidney functioning.

The endocrine glands of the body​
The endocrine system produces and secretes hormones, which are chemical messengers for coordinating physiological activities. The hypothalamus and pituitary, which are located in the brain, act as a higher control; they regulate the secretions of the adrenal glands, thyroid, breasts, ovaries, uterus, testicles and prostate. The secretions then bind to specific receptors in the target structures triggering various physiological actions. Some of the endocrine glands work together and form a complex regulating network named "functional axis", which are important to maintain the normal physiology of the body. The three commonly describe functional axes are the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal, the hypothalamus-pituitary-thyroid and the hypothalamus-pituitary-gonad. Disturbances in the regulating systems lead to endocrine diseases such as hyperthyroidism, endometriosis, missed periods and infertility. Western medicine tries to solve these conditions by hormonal therapies, while TCM will use a wide variety of herbs to regulate the endocrine functions. Some of the herbs and their hormonal effects are listed below.
1. Hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal axis
This functional axis controls stress reactions and regulates bodily processes including digestion, the immune system, mood and emotions, energy storage and expenditure. Dysfunctions of this axis can lead to mood disorders and functional illnesses, such as anxiety, insomnia, post-traumatic stress disorder, chronic fatigue syndrome, irritable bowel syndrome, and alcoholism.
Chinese herbs that can promote or activate this functional axis include:
rhemannia rhizome pilose asiabell root liquorice root poria
ginseng leaf wolfberry ephedra morinda root
dodder seed
tuber fleeceflower root (he shou wu) reishi mushroom common monkshood daughter root
cassia bark cistanche bupleurum root corydalis rhizome
radish seeds
Chinese herbs that can inhibit this functional axis include:
dried ginger kudzu root baical skullcap root Radix Scrophulariae (xuan shen)
cardamon seeds pinellia tuber anemarrhena rhizome noto-ginseng
Rhizoma Polygonati (huang jing) cordyceps
 
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Cort

Founder of Health Rising and Phoenix Rising
Staff member
The hypothalamus connects the endocrine system to the nervous system, and so it needs to be able to sense neurotransmitters in order to know what to secrete.

The posterior pituitary, which also is not protected by the BBB, is the area through which oxytocin and vasopressin are released.

I am looking for types of tissue damage or toxin/pathogen build up that can cause problems in this axis.

The toxin/pathogen is very interesting because of the high frequency of DI or DI type symptoms being reported in people with viral and bacterial diseases.

Any input is appreciated.
Does Empty Sella Syndrome play into this? I know some people with ME/CFS have this...
 

RuthAnn

Well-Known Member
Does Empty Sella Syndrome play into this? I know some people with ME/CFS have this...
(I had to google that), but yes, I would think the pathway for the hormones would be cut. I have a friend who has no pituitary, I'm not sure if it's exactly Empty Sella, but it sounds like it.

Her body can't control body temperature. In the summer she has to stay in air conditioning and wear a cold pack vest.
 

RuthAnn

Well-Known Member
This is an article about vaccines, Pandemrix specifically, causing damage to the hypothalamus.

Titled, "Investigation of an association between onset of narcolepsy and vaccination with pandemic influenza vaccine, Ireland April 2009-December 2010," Irish researchers conducted a retrospective population-based cohort study in order to examine the association between vaccination against influenza A (H1N1) with Pandemrix and narcolepsy, after numerous reports linking them alerted the Irish Medicines Board in 2011.

http://www.greenmedinfo.com/blog/h1n1-flu-vaccine-14-fold-increased-risk-incurable-brain-condition=1
 

Who Me?

Well-Known Member
(I had to google that), but yes, I would think the pathway for the hormones would be cut. I have a friend who has no pituitary, I'm not sure if it's exactly Empty Sella, but it sounds like it.

Her body can't control body temperature. In the summer she has to stay in air conditioning and wear a cold pack vest.
I haven't looked into this, still waking up/sobering up from sleep meds but I'm extremely intolerant of heat. Even now when it's 57º at night I have to keep a fan going

This has been a slow evolution, starting a summer or two ago when I stopped sweating.

I'm getting AC quotes today. How do you dx this?
 

RuthAnn

Well-Known Member
I haven't looked into this, still waking up/sobering up from sleep meds but I'm extremely intolerant of heat. Even now when it's 57º at night I have to keep a fan going

This has been a slow evolution, starting a summer or two ago when I stopped sweating.

I'm getting AC quotes today. How do you dx this?
My friend had either an MRI or a CT scan. Maybe someone who knows more about those two procedures would be able to tell you which one.

I don't know, though, maybe there is something else involving the HPA axis that it is not controlling your body temperature.

Yes, I think my friend stopped sweating, too.
 

RuthAnn

Well-Known Member
So true, Who me? My friend's husband is a nurse at a hospital in Philadelphia, so he finds her good doctors.

The doctor was good at finding out that she had no pituitary, but he is unable to help her. Allopathic medicine doesn't take care of stuff like that.
 

Remy

Administrator
Does Empty Sella Syndrome play into this? I know some people with ME/CFS have this...
Empty Sella is more of a structural problem with the pituitary...it can come with or without associated hormonal deficiences.
It's my opinion that the hypothalamus problems seen in MECFS are more of the autonomic nervous system than of structural abnormalities.
Of course, misdiagnosis is always possible, leaving people with Empty Sella improperly diagnosed with MECFS.
 

ScottTriGuy

Active Member
Empty Sella is more of a structural problem with the pituitary...it can come with or without associated hormonal deficiences.
It's my opinion that the hypothalamus problems seen in MECFS are more of the autonomic nervous system than of structural abnormalities.
Of course, misdiagnosis is always possible, leaving people with Empty Sella improperly diagnosed with MECFS.
I have an 'effaced sella' (and ME) - any body know what testing I should ask my doctor?
 

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