They say if you motivate the mind, the body will follow. Now consider the implications where you manipulate the mind and the body follows. In technical terms we call this a placebo, which entails psychological rather than physical effect.
It is most commonly used in medicine where a control group of patients is given the actual drug while an experimental group is administered with the placebo. Participants in placebo groups have displayed changes in anxiety levels, pain perception, and even brain activity. This points towards the brain’s role in health and well-being.

Is it all in the head? Biologically speaking, the intake releases endorphins which are natural painkillers and hence it eases the pain. One theory behind the placebo effect is the subject-expectancy effect. When people already know what the result of taking a pill is supposed to be, they might unconsciously change their reaction to bring about that result, or simply report that result as the outcome even if it wasn’t due to the pent up expectation. Others believe that people who experience the placebo effect have become classically conditioned to expect relief when they take medication.
So put this knowledge to good use. Bring home an “expensive” bottle of wine and your audience won’t stop ranting about how good it is.

Rishabh Pande

Rishabh Pande


IRIANS – The Neuroscience Institute


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