It's Christmas, the season of hope. So let us talk about hope molecules secreted by your body. If you have never heard of hope molecules, pick up your coffee and let us find out what they are.
Hope molecules are not a figment of my imagination. They actually exist. They are called myokines. We will find out in a moment how you can make your very own hope molecules.
Hope, in psychology, is the belief that things will get better. Tomorrow is a new day. 2024 will be the year for me, for example.
However, there is a chemical side to this as well. Our body produces hormones and chemicals that elevate our mood.
Among the many substances produced, your body produces amino acids when you exercise. Each time your muscles contract, they produce myokines. Obviously, the more your muscles contract, the more myokines you produce.
Myokines help communicate between muscles and organs in a term known as muscle-organ crosstalk..
Surprisingly, the organs include your brain, adipose tissue (fat), bone, liver, gut, pancreas, and even your skin. No wonder they have been labelled the hope molecule.
The effect is an improvement in reducing the ageing of the skin, removing dead cells from your body, helping improve insulin balance, helping bones get stronger, and improving the walls of your arteries, to name a few.
It also helps brown your fat. Brown fat is a better form of fat, which actually helps you burn fat in your body. Finally, myokines help improve immunity by boosting immune cells.
We have not identified all the myokines produced by your body. But the over 650 that we do know about signal various organs of the body to improve their functioning.
So much so that one scientist said, it is as though movement and exercise signal to the body that we are alive and the body ought to work to keep us that way.
We forget that movement itself was nearly impossible. Early life could not move. It was evolution over billions of years that got us to a point where we could run and climb. Make the most of it.
Movement may be the hope and prayer you were seeking. Merry Christmas everyone!
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