Document Detail

Endorphins and exercise: physiological mechanisms and clinical implications.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  2205777     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
In this paper we discuss recent experimental and clinical findings which lead us to propose that prolonged rhythmic exercise can activate central opioid systems by triggering increased discharge from mechanosensitive afferent nerve fibers (Group III or A-delta) arising from contracting skeletal muscle. We review evidence that supports the concept that many of the cardiovascular, analgesic, and behavioral effects of exercise are mediated by this mechanism and that the same or similar mechanisms are responsible for the central and peripheral effects of acupuncture. Based on this hypothesis, and supporting evidence from human and animal studies, we suggest a mechanism and a potential therapeutic role for exercise in the treatment of selected patients with disorders as diverse as hypertension, addiction, depression, and anorexia nervosa.
P Thorén; J S Floras; P Hoffmann; D R Seals
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Journal Article; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't; Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.; Review    
Journal Detail:
Title:  Medicine and science in sports and exercise     Volume:  22     ISSN:  0195-9131     ISO Abbreviation:  Med Sci Sports Exerc     Publication Date:  1990 Aug 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  1990-10-23     Completed Date:  1990-10-23     Revised Date:  2007-11-14    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  8005433     Medline TA:  Med Sci Sports Exerc     Country:  UNITED STATES    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  417-28     Citation Subset:  IM; S    
Department of Physiology, University of Göteborg, Sweden.
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MeSH Terms
Acupuncture Therapy
Anorexia Nervosa / physiopathology
Blood Pressure / physiology
Depressive Disorder / physiopathology
Endorphins / physiology*
Exercise / physiology*
Exercise Therapy
Hypertension / physiopathology,  therapy
Models, Biological
Muscle Contraction / physiology*
Pain / physiopathology,  therapy
Grant Support
Reg. No./Substance:

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