Biofeedback and Self-regulation

, Volume 10, Issue 3, pp 241–254 | Cite as

Emotional stress and diabetic control: A postulated model for the effect of emotional distress upon intermediary metabolism in the diabetic

  • Michael B. Evans


The findings of a number of clinical investigators across a wide variety of situations and using a wide variety of observational procedures agree on the disruptive effects of emotional distress upon diabetic control. An integrative model of coordinated neural and hormonal reactions to emotional stress and their additive and potentiating effects on intermediary metabolism in proposed. The end result of these effects, as part of a general fight/flight or defense-alarm reaction, is a strong energy mobilization response (namely, a sharp rise in blood glucose and free fatty acid levels resulting in increased levels of serum cholesterol, triglycerides, and ketone bodies), which the diabetic cannot readily counterregulate. It is further proposed that increased diabetic control, together with lower insulin requirements, may result from the inclusion of stress management procedures as an adjunct to traditional medical treatment. The findings of a large number of investigators supporting these propositions are presented and discussed.

Descriptor Key Words

stress diabetes diabetic control stress and diabetes intermediary metabolism stress and intermediary metabolism 


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Copyright information

© Plenum Publishing Corporation 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Michael B. Evans
    • 1
  1. 1.Center for Stress and Coping, P.C.Oak Brook

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