“24 hours with our glands” - “How our hormones influence us”


“How our hormones are influencing us”

Group of articles by Alexandra Boqaert, Marine Cygler et Gaëlle Renouvel

From the French magazine « Ça m'intéresse » no 404 October 2014 published by Prisma Media



Indirect link to issue via official site archives

Pdf link available here 


English translation (by information-book.com)


"24 hours with our glands"


Our body is a factory of hormones that never rests. Night and day it produces the molecules that create the rhythm of our lives.


Hunger, sleep, libido…they are all linked to our endocrine system. This system is liberating specific substances every moment of the day. Around the clock:


7.00 am: The alarm rings

To get our body machine going we have to use the energy sources of the previous day. This is the role of cortisol, the “hormone that mobilizes the energy reserves of the organism” explains Dr. Jean-Loup Dervaux. It is secreted by the adrenal glands and the peak of its secretion is between 6 and 8 am. It increases blood sugar (glucose), fuel of the organism, and draws on fats so that they feed the muscles. But as we cannot only live on our reserves, new energy sources have to be found. Ghrelin, which increases the feeling of hunger, is liberated by the stomach: breakfast time is coming.


7.45 am: Breakfast

The carbohydrates we have ingested, which have been transformed in glucose increase the level of sugar (glucose) in the blood (glycaemia) (note that αίμα=blood). The organism needs stability to function well. Insulin is then secreted from the pancreas (...). This hormone allows glucose to enter the muscle cells, the adipose tissue and the liver where it is transformed in the form of glycogen. If the capacity of the liver is surpassed, insulin signals to it to convert the surplus of glucose into fat.


9.00am: Starting the day at work

The thyroid liberates the biggest amount of hormones T3 (triiodothyronine) and T4 (thyroxine). These also prepare the organism for physical and intellectual activity. They moderate the energetic consumption of the body when it is resting and assure the good utilization of sugars, fats and proteins. “They also have an important role in the development of children and regulate the body temperature” explains William Rostene, neuro-endocrinologist and research director at Inserm”.


12.30pm: Stomach makes funny noises

Grehlin plays again its role. During lunch it is better to eat slowly so that the satiety center which is found in the hypothalamus has the time to stimulate the secretion of leptin, the appetite-stopping hormone, from adipose tissue.


4.00pm: Avoid the afternoon energy drain

Insulin is not only liberated after meal uptake. It is also secreted in small doses in the bloodstream throughout the day. It provides a constant regulation of glycaemia to avoid energy drain. Its curve of production has small peaks every ten minutes with a maximum at 4pm. As the glucose level is at its lowest at that time, we sometimes feel the need to eat something sweet.


4.30pm. Alarm: “Clumsy move – coffee could be spilt over keyboard!” – Adrenalin peak

A clumsy move: coffee cup fell from hands. Have to get it quickly before coffee is spilt on the keyboard! Immediately, the brain signals to the adrenal glands, which secrete adrenalin.  This accelerates the heart rate and mobilizes energy to allow for a fast reaction. When everything is all right, cortisol – the other stress hormone – takes the relay. “It notifies the hypothalamus and the pituitary gland (hypophysis) that the organism needs to replenish its sugar stocks”, says William Rostene. This is not an excuse to have a sweet snack at every minimal urge: the liver has normally taken up enough glucose and can liberate it in the blood according to its needs.


6.00pm: We put on our sneakers

The muscles need to be nourished during sport. Glucagon is secreted from the pancreas to liberate the sugar that is stocked in the liver and to increase glycaemia. During effort, testosterone is produced in large quantities to strengthen the muscles. After an hour of activity, the hypothalamus liberates a lot of endorphins. “This hormone has euphoric effects, as well as antalgic and anxiolytic”, says Olivier Bosler.


8.00pm: The day draws to an end

The hypothalamus sends the first signals of tiredness. The pineal gland starts to make melatonin, a hormone that makes us fall asleep.


10.00pm: The intimate time

The desire rises, the partners secrete testosterone, motor of libido for the two sexes. During “l’amour”, endorphins but also oxytocin are liberated and increase the feeling of pleasure and well-being and also favor falling asleep.


End of English translation


“24 hours with our glands” from the article series 


“How our hormones influence us”

Group of articles by Alexandra Boqaert, Marine Cygler et Gaëlle Renouvel

From the French magazine « Ça m'intéresse » no 404 October 2014 published by Prisma Media



Etymology of “Hormone”


As mentioned at this very interesting blog http://mashedradish.com/2015/08/11/hormone/

(start of quote) British physiologist Ernest Henry Starling (…) formed the word directly on the Greek ὁρμῶν (hormon), a present participle of the verb ὁρμᾶν, (horman), “to set into motion.” (end of quote)


Notice that the vowel o has a diacritic mark, termed “spiritus asper” meaning “breath or breathing (=spiritus) of a rough (=asper) nature”. It indicates the aspiration of the initial vowel. This becomes h in latin.


To grasp the notion of aspiration, compare the two following words starting with a vowel:

 Ὃμηρος (Homer) and ἐγώ (ego).


(First notice that the word ego has a diacritic mark on ω which is termed acute accent. This means that in greek you will need to place stress on the ω; not on the e as one does when pronouncing “ego” in english. The same mark exists on the Ό of  Ὃμηρος meaning that you have to place stress on this letter.)


Now, to pronounce Ὅμηρος (Homer) you need to aspirate the O.

To pronounce ἐγώ (ego) you do not aspirate the e (there is a spiritus lenis on the ε indicating smooth breathing).


(Note that in contemporary greek only the acute accent exists)


Other uses of “Ορμή" "Horme"

OPMH in greek is also the physics concept of “Momentum”, the product of mass and velocity.


Also greek university degrees use “ορμώμενος” to designate the town a student is coming from in order to study at the designated university. It is officially translated as “hailing from”.

John X Hailing from Athens

Having studied Biology

At the University of Thessaloniki

And deemed after prescribed examination as worthy of the grade 10

In the graduates of Biology

Was admitted

On 2015-10-01



Hormones and fat metabolism


Cell at CellPress ‏@CellCellPress Oct 2

Which #hormone is deficient in ob/ob #mice? Take our Cell Challenge http://ow.ly/SWGkq  #biology #knowledge #quiz



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Cell at CellPress ‏@CellCellPress Sep 25

Can #neurons be used to zap #fat away? Conversation w/ Ana Domingos http://ow.ly/SEXNJ  http://ow.ly/SEYyr 

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