Heredity and Hormones
Human behavior is influenced by heredity and hormones. There are many parts to this, such as the endocrine system, glands that secrete hormones, genetics, behavior genetics, and evolutionary psychology. The following is a closer look at the endocrine system and hormones. The endocrine system works in conjunction with the nervous system using what is termed “chemical conversation.” The endocrine glands release substances referred to as hormones that are released into your bloodstream. Hormones, like their counterparts neurotransmitters, carry messages and regulate bodily functions. The main glands in the endocrine system are the Pineal, Pituitary, Parathyroid, Thyroid, Pancreas, Adrenal, Ovaries and Testes. The Pineal Gland is almost in the center of the brain, and secretes the hormone melatonin that helps regulate your sleep-wake cycles, also known as the “biological clock.” The Pituitary Gland is responsible for the largest number of varying hormones and has the widest range of responses. It is located on the underside of the brain, and it can influence blood pressure, thirst, sexual behavior, body growth, and even contractions of the uterus during labor. The Parathyroid Gland is made up of four tiny organs that influence excitability by balancing and controlling the levels of calcium and phosphate in the body. The Thyroid Gland is located in your neck, by your voice box, and regulates the body’s rate of metabolism which can control energy levels and weight. The Pancreas produces insulin, which breaks down your body’s blood sugar. The Ovaries and Testes secrete hormones such as estrogen and testosterone. Testosterone has been linked to more aggressive behavior and estrogen is elevated during ovulation in females. The Adrenal Gland is located by the kidneys and affects the body’s reaction to stress. These systems can all determine...
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