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PETA Calls for Oxytocin Ban

In India, oxytocin is commonly given to dairy cattle to increase their milk production. People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals have called for a ban on the practice.

Scientists there have found that when humans consume milk from treated cows, they also take in excess oxytocin, which leads to menstrual and other problems.

Does anyone know if the U.S. dairy industry also uses oxytocin?

Recovering from MDMA Burnout

People always ask, "How can I get more oxytocin? How can I strengthen my oxytocin response?" Today, I got an email from someone who said he had taken a lot of MDMA (Ecstasy) in the past. He was now clean and very healthy, but feeling "autistic."

He wondered whether it was safe to take oxytocin nasal sprays, and if there was anything he could do to generate oxytocin on his own. Here's what I answered:

As you probably know, MDMA releases oxytocin. This effect is likely the cause of much of the pleasurable feelings of MDMA. Scientific studies and anecdotes show that MDMA's effects seem to diminish over time. People seem to burn out on it.

This could be because, while this hasn't exactly been shown with oxytocin, scientists and doctors know that when you take an external hormone for extended periods of time, you internal production tends to slow and maybe even stop. It happens with testosterone and estrogen, for example. Many scientists who work with oxytocin in human studies think it's likely that taking oxytocin could diminish one's natural production.

It sounds like you have taken the first steps to getting very healthy and are ready to take the next steps.

It's very likely that you can boost your natural ability to release oxytocin into the brain, where it will create feelings of connection with others.

I think of the oxytocin response as a muscle. If a muscle is very weak, or has been injured, you need to start slowly and gradually build up its strength.

I think a problem that many of us have is connecting with another human -- engaging in a mutual oxytocin response -- is difficult, because human communication and relationships are so complex. It's often better to start with a smaller step. If you love animals, get a pet and care for it.

Another terrific thing to do, that many of us shy away from, is taking care of someone who is sick. I know it sounds absolutely terrifying, but volunteering at a hospice, or helping someone who is terminal, can be completely life-changing. Care-taking builds a different kind of oxytocin response, one that's separate from the infatuation/romance thing that for many of us is our main experience of bonding with another.

 Call it altruism or generosity, both aspects of oxytocin. In my own experience, learning to care for someone who was sick was the beginning of healing and the ability to love and connect more deeply.

Chip August's Sex, Love & Intimacy Podcast

Charles August, or Chip for short, has done 90 podcasts covering all aspects of sex and love for Personal Life Media (a company founded by internet wundergrrrl Susan Bratton). Chip co-facilitates, with his life-partner, a relationship workshop for couples called Passionate Relationships. Chip is also a certified Instructor of PET (Parent Effectiveness Training) leading adult education workshops to teach listening, conflict resolution and communication skills to parents.

I was honored to be Chip's 90th guest recently.

We talked about how the way we're mothered influences the way we love as adults, and how that plays out in our relationships throughout life.

You can listen to the podcast via iTunes or here on Personal Life Media. If you're an old-fashioned readerly type like me, you can also read the transcript when you click on that link.

Thanks, Chip!

Video: Pitocin, Hospital Birth and Brain Damage

This video explains how pitocin administered during labor can reduce the amount of oxygen in the placenta. Medical professionals who are monitoring the fetus don't look at the birth as a continuous process, leading to problems like cerebral palsy. Scary stuff. It's from a law firm that evidently specializes in suing for such. But still, worth hearing.

Tweet the Monkey

  • 08:53 Dogs share our capacity for trust, love and ethics. (They also respond the same way to oxytocin) #
  • 11:42 3 dogs, 3 kittens ... did you say something about work? #
  • 11:43 has anyone else noticed Tiny URL not working right any more? #
  • 11:44 Eric Braverman prescribing oxytocin supplements???? Anyone know anything about what form? #
  • 13:15 @warrenwhitlock I still want to take part in the promotion, haven't heard anything #
  • 13:47 @mariaschneider why are ebooks so ugly? There used to be this thing called a graphic designer. It was their job to make books pretty. #
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