As the body conserves energy, it cuts down on some of the more expendable functions that are not absolutely necessary for survival. This can lead to a long list of unfavorable symptoms listed in Chapter 9 (fatigue, depression, PMS, migraines, fluid retention, etc.).
This is accomplished by the fact that some enzymes are more susceptible to a decrease in body temperature than others. It is fascinating that the most susceptible enzymes happen to be related to some of the body’s more expendable functions. For example, the largest organ in the human body is the skin, and a huge amount of energy is expended in maintaining the skin. The skin is quite durable and can continue to function for many weeks even when maintenance levels drop significantly. So a person’s body can get away with significantly decreasing the energy expended on maintaining the skin for a period of time, thereby conserving a huge amount of energy. In this way, the body’s conservation of energy can result in dry skin, dry hair, hair loss, dry, brittle nails, etc. It’s not surprising that luxury functions, such as the sex drive, are among the first to go. The more important functions (for personal short-term survival) like vision, hearing, heart function, and breathing are not as greatly affected by changes in temperature. Thus, the body has a very effective way of conserving energy under periods of stress by decreasing energy expenditures on some of the more expendable bodily functions, while preserving some of the more vital functions.