Vivienne Parry

The Truth About Hormones

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Hormones rule our internal world: they control our growth, our metabolism, weight, water-balance, body clocks, fertility, muscle bulk, mood, speed of ageing, whether we want sex or not (and whether we enjoy it) and even whom we fall in love with. Their effects may occur in seconds and be over in a flash, or emerge over months and last for years. In The Truth About Hormones Vivienne Parry explains how exactly these mysteriously powerful chemicals affect our bodies and our behaviour.
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    Soliloquios Literarioshar citeretsidste år
    Women are much better at judging social situations and are more sensitive to facial expressions than men. They worry about how other people are feeling, putting themselves in their shoes (empathizing) and are keen to chat and share intimacy. Men are better at working out how things work (systemizing), be it washing machines, computer programs or armies; they prefer games and gadgets. They may start collecting things – football stats, CDs, beer mats – a hobby which is often a complete mystery to women. At the same time the appeal of watching soaps on TV and the concept of shopping for pleasure is mystifying men. Most men will run a mile before they do the ‘talking about problems’ thing.
    Soliloquios Literarioshar citeretsidste år
    The researchers found that the higher the levels of pre-natal testosterone in the amniotic fluid, the less eye contact the toddlers made, and the smaller their vocabulary. These toddlers were seen again when they were four years old. By this time, those children that had had the highest level of prenatal testoerone had lower social skills and more restricted interests than those who had had lower levels of testosterone in their bath of amniotic fluid.

    Fetal testosterone clearly affects the brain in some way and therefore influences behaviour for the rest of the baby’s life. In a nutshell, the more you have in the womb, the more of a systemizer you are; the less you have, the more of an empathizer you are. While of course baby boys produce more testosterone, baby girls also produce it, some almost to the levels of the least producing boys.
    Soliloquios Literarioshar citeretsidste år
    The mechanism that turns the embryo’s genetic sex into the adult male or female depends on an immensely complex interplay of genetic, psychological, social and, naturally, hormonal factors. The chief hormonal factor is the influence of testosterone in the womb.

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