Energy = Rabbit + Drum?
April 3, 2012 7:12 AM Subscribe
What is energy? I am looking for SCIENCE!
posted by prefpara to Health & Fitness (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I am curious to understand what scientific knowledge exists about energy, but I have a very limited understanding of science and a small scientific vocabulary, so I don't really know how to get started.
By "energy" I mean the subjective feeling. So, for example, I know that not eating any food will make people feel like they have less energy than they would otherwise. I know some people report feeling that they have more subjective energy when they acquire the habit of regular physical exertion. I know that depression is sometimes characterized by the feeling that one lacks the energy to do anything at all. I know some drugs make people feel energetic (cocaine). I know adrenalin makes people feel energetic. I am not sure that ADD medications have this effect, though I know some people say they do.
So clearly there is an objective component (like sleep deprivation + starvation = most people will feel that they have no energy). And there is clearly a subjective component, or perhaps I should say that emotional states seem to affect energy (though perhaps there's a chicken and egg problem).
I'd like to understand what scientists have learned about this and whether there are any strong theories of what causes people to feel more or less energized - is it a cluster of receptors in the brain, or is it a combination of certain nutrients, or a complex balance of various factors?
I would appreciate links to books, articles, or studies or suggestions of useful search terms. Really anything that would enlighten me as to what science has to say about this stuff.