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  • Writer's pictureEduardo Picasso

Allostatic load and its influence on the body-mind

When the body is continuously subjected to a stressor element, its internal balance is affected. What is known as allostatic load appears: the body tries to recover after a stressful event, but it does not have enough time or energy since the stressor is still active, and the body "gets used" to living with that overload. This creates a new state of balance in which the body system is less able to tolerate new loads. The stress that we accumulate is not housed in “independent compartments”, that is, we do not have the “emotional stress compartment” on the one hand, the “physical stress compartment” on the other and the “psychological stress compartment” on the other. They all add up in a kind of "general compartment", until there comes a time when the body can no longer adapt, and various symptoms appear (pain, fatigue, etc.). A clear example would be a person who is sitting in the front seat of a vehicle: when turning to look for something in the back seat, he refers to the sudden appearance of a very intense pain in his back. We could think that the cause was that single movement, but the reality is that there is an accumulation of "causes", which ended up generating that "final effect". The objective of osteopathy is to look for dysfunctions (loss of mobility) in the body, and in this way remove mechanical loads from the body system so that it can reorganize and rebalance itself.


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