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Academic Studies On The Relationship Between Stress, Trauma, And Chronic Health Conditions

Posted by Liz Tenuto on

When your hips feel tight, the root cause is often stored trauma that's stuck on your body.

Your hips are the storehouse for trauma and unprocessed emotions within your body. This is primarily due to body's physiological survival response. 

When you experience trauma, your psoas muscle contracts and stays contracted until you manually release it. The psoas is a large, deep muscle in your body that connects your diaphragm to you hip joint. 

You can release your psoas muscle at home with somatic exercises. (I teach 3 ways to do this in my Free Your Hips course).

Your adrenal glands also kick into overdrive as a response to trauma as well, pumping your body full of adrenaline. Your adrenal glands are located along your psoas muscle. 

And then, there are neuropeptides, which are chemical signals that connect your emotions to your muscles, gut, and heart. This accounts for how trauma and unprocessed emotions get stored (and stuck) in your body. 

Here are the top academic studies, articles, and books that dive into the relationship between hip tension, stored trauma, and physical / mental health conditions for your reference:


  1. What Is Cortisol Belly? (academic study)
  2. I Have All The Symptoms Of High Cortisol, Why Do My Cortisol Test Results Come Back Normal? (video by the International Autoimmune Institute & Bingham Memorial Center for Functional Medicine) 
  3. Stages of Adrenal Fatigue(article)
  4. The 3 Stages of Adrenal Fatigue & How to Recognize Them(article)
  5. Fight Adrenal Fatigue: 15 Steps to Combat Adrenal Fatigue(article)
  6. Cause of Moon Face(article)
  7. What Are the Causes of Moon Face?(article)
  8. Conditions Related to Moon Facies(article)
  9. Cortisol & Moon Face(article)
  10. The 4 Stages of Adrenal Fatigue(article)
  11. Recognizing the Stages of Adrenal Fatigue(article)
  12. The Connection Between High Cortisol And Strep Throat (academic study) 



  1. How emotions get stored in your body (academic study)
  2. Leading Neurologist on the connection between the emotions and the body (several academic studies)
  3. The surprising connection between your hips and your emotions (article)
  4. The Psoas Book(book)
  5. The Molecules Of Emotion: The Science Behind Mind-Body Medicine (book)
  6. My Body Keeps Your Secrets (book)
  7. Move: How The New Science Of Body Movement Can Set Your Mind Free (book)
  8. Why rocking is healing(academic study)
  9. How rocking can help you heal (article)
  10. Rocking and substance abuse healing (article) 
  11. The link between your emotions, mind, and health (article)
  12. The Best Way To Treat Long-Term Back Pain Is Through Therapeutic Techniques, Not Pills (academic study)
  13. Why Physical Activity is Important to People with Dissociative Disorders (article)
  14. Effects of Exercise Training on the Autonomic Nervous System with a Focus on Anti-Inflammatory and Antioxidants Effects (academic study)
  15. The Vicious Cycle Between Psoriasis and Mental Health(article)
  16. What does the Vagus Nerve have to do with Menopause?(article)
  17. The Vagus Nerve And Perimenopause And Menopause(article)
  18. Autonomic Nervous System Activity and Menopausal Symptoms(academic study)
  19. Understanding the experiences of anger in the onset and progression of psoriasis: A thematic analysis(academic study)
  20. Starting A New Habit With Exercise(article)
  21. What are cold water immersion benefits, risks as more people take the plunge (article)
  22. Do cold plunges have benefits for physical and mental health? What to know (article)
  23. Repetitive negative thinking eases headaches temporarily but worsens them in the long term(article)
  24. What can cause Sciatica to flare up?(article)
  26. The effect of Emotions on Gut Health(article)
  27. Muscle Knots in the Neck: Tips from Physical Therapists to Feel Better(article)
  28. Everything You Need to Know About the Throat Chakra(article)
  29. 8 Ways Our Feet and Legs Reveal Our Emotions(article)
  30. Emotional processing and its relationship to chronic low back pain: results from a case-control study(academic study)
  31. The Tendon Guard Reflex - Understanding Our Protective Reflex(article)
  32. Forward Head Posture Negatively Impacts the Nervous System (article) 
  33. A Systems Neuroscience Approach to Migraine(academic study)
  34. The Reason You Love Putting Your Arm In The Air After A Long Day(article)
  35. Bodily Maps of Emotion(academic study)
  36. Where is emotional feeling felt in the body? An integrative review(research article)
  37. Can emotions be trapped in the body? What to know(article)
  38. Mood Changes During Perimenopause Are Real. Here’s What to Know.(article)



  1. Pain and PTSD (academic study)
  2. The psychobiology of post-traumatic stress(academic study)
  3. Inflammation and PTSD(academic study)
  4. The connection between PTSD, autoimmune disease, and Hashimoto’s(article)
  5. How Movement Therapy Can Heal Traumatic Stress(article)
  6. The Link Between Autoimmune Diseases and PTSD(article)
  7. Posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms and timing of menopause and gynecological surgery in the Nurses' Health Study II(academic study)
  8. Dissociation Between Working Memory Performance and Proactive Interference Control in Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder(academic study)
  9. PTSD Scale-Self Report for DSM-5 (PSS-SR5) (self-assessment)
  10. The science and biology of PTSD(research article)



  1. Physical health problems common in ADHD(article)
  2. How does ADHD Affect the Brain?(article)
  3. Understanding Hypersensitivity in ADHD(article)
  4. 8 Devastating Physical Consequences of ADD(article)
  5. Mapping phenotypic and aetiological associations between ADHD and physical conditions in adulthood in Sweden: a genetically informed register study(academic study)
  6. ADHD Increases Your Risk for These Physical Conditions(article)
  7. Adult ADHD Is Linked to Numerous Physical Conditions(article)
  8. Is it ADHD or Trauma?(article)
  9. 7 Favorite Fitness Tips for Adults With ADHD(article)
  10. How to Workout Consistently When You Have ADHD(article)
  11. Exercise is Good For an ADHD Brain(article)
  12. Mindful Eating, ADHD and Nutrition(article)
  13. The Impact of Skipping Meals on ADHD Symptoms and How to Overcome It
  14. “That’s because of ADHD too?!” The links between ADHD and disordered eating, explained.(article)
  15. Does ADHD Affect Hunger?(article)
  16. ADHD and tiredness: What to know(article)
  17. ADHD burnout: 3 big reasons why you're always exhausted(article)
  18. ADHD and Chronic Fatigue(article)
  19. Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder in adult patients with Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD): Is ADHD a vulnerability factor? (academic study)
  20. Trauma and ADHD – Association or Diagnostic Confusion? A Clinical Perspective(academic study)


  1. Completing Our Body's Stress Response Cycle(article)
  2. Physical Activity To Complete the Stress Cycle(article)
  3. How Movement Closes the Stress Cycle(article) x
  4. Managing Stress With Exercise & Movement(article)
  5. Five reasons why stress and perimenopause are an issue(article)
  6. Can Stress Cause Early Menopause?(article)
  7. Can Stress Cause Early Menopause?(article)
  8. Completing Our Body's Stress Response Cycle(article)
  9. Eight simple ways to close a stress cycle, according to experts(article)
  10. Exercise and stress: Get moving to manage stress(article)
  11. The Association between Stress Level in Daily Life and Age at Natural Menopause in Korean Women: Outcomes of the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey in 2010-2012(academic study)
  12. 12 Places Body Stores Stress And How It Affects You(article)
  13. Bruxism(article)
  14. Hormonal contraceptive use is associated with differences in women’s inflammatory and psychological reactivity to an acute social stressor (academic study)
  15. Use of the birth control pill affects stress reactivity and brain structure and function(academic study)


  1. Past trauma may haunt your future health (Harvard article)
  2. Hips and trauma(article)
  3. How unprocessed trauma is stored in your body (article)
  4. Stored trauma in the body(article)
  5. Your Body Keeps The Score: Brain, Mind, Body In The Healing Of Trauma (book)
  6. Waking The Tiger: Healing Trauma (book)
  7. Lifting Heavy Things: Healing Trauma One Rep At A Time (book)
  8. The Myth Of Normal: Trauma, Illness, And Healing In A Toxic Culture (book by Dr. Gabor Mate)
  9. Did childhood trauma play a role in your Hashimoto’s hypothyroidism?(article)
  10. Childhood trauma: A factor for increased risk of major depression in psoriatic patients(academic study)
  11. Childhood trauma and resilience in psoriatic patients: A preliminary report
    (academic study)
  12. Childhood Trauma and Psychosocial Stress Affect Treatment Outcome in Patients With Psoriasis Starting a New Treatment Episode(academic study)
  13. A History of Stressors and Childhood Trauma May Predict Worse Menopausal Symptoms and Well-Being(article)
  14. Intergenerational abuse, childhood violence may cause earlier onset of menopause(article)
  15. Meditation May Aggravate Trauma(article)
  16. Childhood Abuse and Fibroids(academic study)
  17. Understanding the Impact of Trauma(academic study)



  1. PCOS and Pelvic Health for Women (academic study)
  2. PCOS and Childhood Trauma (academic study) 
  3. PCOS and Childhood Trauma (article)
  4. The Connection Between PCOS and Childhood Neglect Or Abuse (academic study)
  5. Is PCOS From Trauma? (article)



  1. Dealing with the Overwhelm: Chronic Freeze and Depression(article)
  2. Stress Responses: Fight, Flight, Freeze(article)



  1. Depression and anxiety: Exercise eases symptoms(article)
  2. Exercise is an all-natural treatment to fight depression(article)
  3. The Benefits of Exercise for the Clinically Depressed (academic study)
  4. The best treatment for depression? It could be exercise (article)
  5. Physical activity in the prevention and treatment of anxiety and depression (academic study)
  6. Exercise as a treatment for depression: A meta-analysis (academic study)
  7. Accessing The Healing Power Of The Vagus Nerve: Self-Help Exercises For Anxiety, Depression, Trauma, And Autism (book by Stanley Rosenberg)
  8. Why Meditation Is Difficult When You Are Depressed  And What To Try Instead(article)
  9. Does Risk for Anxiety Increase During the Menopausal Transition? Study of Women's Health Across the Nation (SWAN)(academic study)
  10. Childhood trauma: a risk for major depression in patients with psoriasis(academic study)
  11. Trauma and Stress in Teen Years Increases Risk of Depression During Menopause, Penn Study Shows(academic study)
  12. The Benefits Of Exercise for Mental Health(article)



  1. The Relationship Between Psychological Factors and Weight Gain (academic study) 
  2. The Weight Of Traumatic Stress: PTSD and Weight In Women (academic study)
  3. How Stress Causes Weight Gain in Your Stomach (academic study) 
  4. Stress May Cause Excess Abdominal Fat (Yale article)
  5. Weight Can't Be Tackled Until We Address The Trauma That Causes It (article) 
  6. Hiding Behind Weight: The Correlation between Childhood Sexual Abuse and Obesity(article)
  7. The association between childhood trauma and overweight and obesity in young adults: the mediating role of food addiction(academic study)
  8. Past trauma, stress and weight gain(article)
  9. How Sexual Trauma Prevents Weight Loss (article)
  10. Childhood Sexual Abuse, Emotional Eating & Weight Loss(article)
  11. Childhood trauma could lead to adult obesity (academic study)
  12. How Sexual Trauma Prevents Weight Loss(article)
  13. Childhood trauma could lead to adult obesity(academic study)



  1. Your Favorite Sleep Position Could Say a Lot about You(article)
  2. What Your Sleep Position Says About You(article)
  3. What Your Sleep Position Means(article)
  4. The Way You Sleep Says a Lot about Your Personality. Strange, but True!(article)
  5. What your Sleeping Position Says about You(article)
  6. Your Sleep Position Affects Much More Than You Think(article)
  7. What Does Your Sleeping Position Say About Your Personality and Health(article)
  8. Nightmares and flashbacks(article)
  9. The Relationship Between Trauma, Sleep, And Dreams(article)
  10. Past Trauma: 5 Tips for Coping with Nightmares and Sleep Problems(article)
  11. How to Manage Trauma-Related Nightmares(article)
  12. Nightmares and the Brain(article)
  13. Nightmares After Trauma(article)
  14. How Trauma Affects Dreams(article)



  1. Thyroid Stimulating Exercises That Work For Your Thyroid Gland(article)
  2. Exploring The Aspect of Psychosomatics in Hypothyroidism(academic study)
  3. Can PTSD Cause Hypothyroidism?(article)
  4. Posttraumatic stress disorder and incidence of thyroid dysfunction in women(academic study)



  1. What To Do When You’re (Literally) Sick With Grief(article)
  2. Where is grief stored in the body?(article)
  3. Physical Symptoms Of Grief: Sleep Issues(article)
  4. Physical Symptoms Of Grief: Gut Health(article)
  5. Physical Symptoms Of Grief: Headaches & Muscle Aches(article)
  6. Physical Symptoms Of Grief: Weakened Immunity(article)
  7. Physical Symptoms Of Grief: Heart Palpitations & Heart Issues(article)
  8. Physical Symptoms Of Grief: Heart Palpitations & Heart Issues(article)
  9. Physical Symptoms Of Grief: Sensory Sensitivity(article)
  10. Physical Symptoms Of Grief: Breathing Difficulties(article)


Want to release stored trauma from your body? Get guided through the step by step process of relieving your hip pain and releasing stored trauma in my 30-day Release Stress & Stored Trauma Course.