Welcome to Finding Allostasis
Updated: Apr 14
Hello! This blog is about finding allostasis in everyday life.
Rather than finding balance, which can feel a little precarious, finding allostasis is about how we adapt with our constantly fluctuating environment in dynamic coordination with our neurological, biological, social, emotional and spiritual networks. This supports our evolution - the growth and creativity that is life.
Allostasis is the flexibility of a tree in a storm that allows it to bend and not break. It is the constant shifting of our vision and weight on a bicycle as we anticipate the turn ahead. It is our blood pressure that resets at a higher level, adapting to chronic stress.
The lens of allostasis never removes us from our larger context and accounts for the interconnectedness of everything. It explains our stress response as adaptive, whatever it may be, and how we can experience growth after trauma. Allostasis views the placebo effect as "of course," rather than mysterious. It gives us a deeper understanding of pain, sleep, disease, health, and so much more.
Allostasis accepts that the one thing we can depend on is change, every, single moment. It is the next evolution of our scientific understanding of homoeostasis and accepts that its principles too will evolve.
When I stumbled upon this concept and began to dig into its principles, it opened up a universe of information and experience I never imagined existed. It shifted my thinking about myself as a human in constant reaction to my environment, to one who with every cell, continually anticipates what is coming next whether I am conscious of it or not, co-evolving with my surroundings in universe-wide network.
Allostasis is not an easy concept to comprehend or explain in a single sentence, page, or book, although I do have brilliant scientist friends who are doing so. If you would like to dig into their research, you could start with the book What is Health? Allostasis and the Evolution of Human Design (2020) by Peter Sterling or A Copernican Approach to Brain Advancement: The Paradigm of Allostatic Orchestration (2019) in the journal, Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, by Sung Lee.
Meanwhile, I hope these stories help you connect with allostasis in daily life.
-Jessica Lemke Del Pozo