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Chapter: Essentials of Anatomy and Physiology: Endocrine System

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Functions of the Endocrine System

Describe the ten regulatory functions of the endocrine system.

FUNCTIONS OF THE ENDOCRINE SYSTEM


The main regulatory functions of the endocrine system are the following:


1.                     Metabolism. The endocrine system regulates the rate ofmetabolism, the sum of the chemical changes that occur in tissues.

 

2.           Control of food intake and digestion. The endocrine systemregulates the level of satiety (fullness) and the breakdown of food into individual nutrients.

 

3.                      Tissue development. The endocrine system influencesthe development of tissues, such as those of the nervous system.

 

4.                       Ion regulation. The endocrine system regulates the soluteconcentration of the blood.

 

5.                     Water balance. The endocrine system regulates water balance by controlling solutes in the blood.

 

6.                     Heart rate and blood pressure regulation. The endocrine system helps regulate the heart rate and blood pressure and helps prepare the body for physical activity.

 

7.                     Control of blood glucose and other nutrients. The endocrine system regulates the levels of blood glucose and other nutrients in the blood.

 

8.                     Control of reproductive functions. The endocrine system controls the development and functions of the reproductive systems in males and females.

 

9.                     Uterine contractions and milk release. The endocrine system regulates uterine contractions during delivery and stimulates milk release from the breasts in lactating females.

 

10.               Immune system regulation. The endocrine system helps control the production and functions of immune cells.

 

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