PSYC 3390 Chapter 2: Ch2: Biological Foundations

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6 Feb 2017
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Chapter 2: Biological Foundations
Cultures influence interpretations of biological events of puberty
Approaching puberty before or after the majority is a great source of anxiety
The Biological Revolution of Puberty
Puberty: to grow hairy, dramatic changes in anatomy, physiology, physical appearance
The Endocrine System
Glands release hormones to change development and functioning of body
Hypothalamus: initiation of puberty, physiological and psychological motivation and
functioning
Increased production of gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH)
Once a threshold of body fat is reached, hypothalamus begins puberty
Increase in GnRH affects the pituitary gland releasing gonadotropin
Follicle stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormones (LH) to develop
gametes (eggs and sperm)
Gonads: ovaries and testes; increased production of sex hormones estrogen and androgen
Estrogen = estradiol; androgen = testosterone (both genders produce both)
Increased production of adrenocorticotropic hormone (ACTH): causes an increase
in androgen production
Feedback Loop in Endocrine System: bw hypothalamus, pituitary glands, gonads, and
adrenal glands monitoring and adjusting levels of sex hormones
Once set point is reached (imagine like a thermometer), hypothalamus reduces
production of GnRH; pituitary glands release FSH, LH, and ACTH; gonads and
adrenal glands reduce amount of sex hormones
Physical Growth During Puberty
Adolescent growth spurt: peak height velocity, fastest growth spurts
Asynchronicity: growth is not in even pace; extremities (hands, feet, head) hit first
Girls mature about 2 years ahead of boys in every aspect
Increase in testosterone = spurt in muscle growth; increase in body fat
Growth in heart, slower heart rate, vital capacity of break increases
Physically speaking men (more testosterone, slower heart rate, higher vital capacity, etc)
have things working to make them more athletic BUT cultural gender roles play into it
Obesity: increase in fat production combined w/ culture and fatty foods = higher BMI
More in developed countries: fast food, larger portions, automobile industry,
nonphysical mainstream activities w/ technology, genetics, soft drinks
Physical changes in Emerging Adulthood - peak health and strength
Bones continue to grow in density until 20s
Maximum oxygen uptake: physical stamina peaks in early 20s
Cardiac output: blood flow from hear peaks in mid 20s
Faster reaction time, speak strength
Most effective immune system - least susceptible to physical illnesses
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