Functions of the Brain
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Endorphins are chemicals the body naturally produces in response to stimuli like pain, stress or fear. Called neurotransmitters, these chemicals are a key part of the central nervous system, passing along signals between neurons in areas of the brain responsible for controlling emotion, releasing feelings of pleasure, and blocking pain. Depending on the situation, endorphins either can issue calm signals or ratchet up their urgency. The body produces at least 20 different endorphins, originating from areas such as the spinal cord and pituitary gland.