Phytotherapeutic modulation of the impact of facial expressions in intense physical stress

Authors: Ramona Jurcău1, Ioana Jurcău2, Nicolae Colceriu3, Călin Gîrlea4


1Department of Pathophysiology, Faculty of Medicine, “Iuliu Hatieganu” University of Medicine and Pharmacy, Cluj-Napoca, Romania

2Emergency Clinical Hospital for Children, Cluj-Napoca, Romania

3University of Veterinary Medicine and Agricultural Sciences, Cluj-Napoca, Romania

4Dacia Plant Company, Bod, Brașov, Romania


Background. Facial expressions (FE) can have an important impact on physiological and psychological reactions, under the conditions of physical exercise. On the other hand, it is known that there are plants that can modulate the impact of stress on the human body.

Aims. The aim of the present research is the evaluation of phytotherapeutic modulation of the impact of FE in intense physical stress.

Methods. Sedentary volunteers (n = 24 males) were divided into two groups: a) no treatment (C = 12) and b) who received a phytotherapeutic product containing plants with an adaptogenic role,  PAD (AD = 12). The chosen FEs were: neutral (N), disappointment (D) and encouragement (E). FEs were displayed on a screen in front of the subject. Physical stress (PS) was represented by a short-term intense physical effort, made on a Monark Ergomedic 839E cycle ergometer.  PAD administration was 2×1 capsules/day, 21 days. The analyzed indicators were heart rate (HR), anxiety (A) and glycemia (G). Statistical analysis was made on the basis of the Student test.

Results. HR: compared with AD, C values were significantly higher immediately pre- and post-stress. A and G: values in C were significantly higher compared to AD, immediately pre- and post-stress.

Conclusions. 1) Influence of PS+N/D/E was significantly more intense on C versus AD, more intense on FC and A than on G. 2) FE type D increased and FE type E reduced physical stress, while N did not influence it. 3) Compared to C, PAD decreased the effect of FE type D and increased the FE type E effect. 4) PAD could be used as a modulator of FE impact on physical stress, and this involvement should be studied through further research.

Key words: facial expressions, physical stress, heart rate, anxiety, glycemia, phytotherapeutic modulation

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