Facts on Fascia - The Microvacuole
August 21, 2012
When I was in Vancouver earlier this year, I had a great opportunity to chat with one of my favorite fascianatos, Dr. JC Guimberteau and cellular guru Jim Oschman. JC asked me how MELT was progressing.
Without hesitation I filled him in but took the opportunity to discuss one eluding issue about explaining microvacuoles. “It seems simple to me but when I try to explain why the space is so relevant and why hydration is the primary importance to these vital spaces…” he exclaimed, “Ah, Sue! You are missing one word – VOLUME!” And just like that it hit me. Of course. It’s so simple really. Volume and sustaining the consistency of it. So of course, because it seems like something to take 30 minutes to write a blog about, here’s my take on a microvacuole and how it helps the connective tissue system stay supportive for a lifetime.
Connective tissue is not just a tissue for connection it is actually the constituent tissue that explains the architectural framework of our body and gives organization and structural existence to the body.
The questions is, how does connective tissue and all of its components create this framework? How is it held together and how can we truly define not only what we think this tissue does but how and why?
Let me simplify a very profound concept. There are fibers – collagen. All of the collagen fibers are connected from the skin to the bone allowing all the structures it surrounds to sustain continuity. The collagen creates a stable architecture that is mobile yet can maintain a given shape. These shapes are called microvacuoles. They are the fluid “spaceholders” that resist the forces of gravity and avoid being crushed or damaged by it. (It’s a concept more recently called biotensegrity.)
It is the microvacuole that sustains the fluid system and further helps to explain how the body can sustain its constant fluid volume while managing variable pressures and tension caused by daily living. It basically has to do with the fluid pressure and volume between the structuring collagen material keeping our body from collapsing or losing space as we move our body against the force of gravity.
Microvacuoles maintain the distribution of water within the body. Because if water is everywhere comprising 85% of the body’s weight, and is present in all tissues both cellular and most importantly, extracellular if it weren’t for these tiny spaceholders the water would pool to our extremities (your feet and hands). So we would have big bubbly legs and really skinny heads, necks and torsos. How odd we would look! Our skull would be crushed and our brains would hurt really bad! Luckily we are designed with these tiny, adaptable spaceholders to keep the fluid constant through our entire body.
What’s more amazing is that for as much adaptation and morphing as the collagen framework that creates the microvacuole does in any given moment, it also seems to be able to return to it’s original shape as if it had a memory. These prestress, flexible collagen fibril structures take various forms so they sustain stability while being adaptable to sliding between themselves and allow for better metabolism, thus prolonging their lifespan. If the fluid isn’t available in the microvacuole the collagen’s ability to morph and then return to it’s ideal position is hindered.
All of this is happening on the microscopic level. On the macro level, your body suffers in numerous ways. The ways you should be concerned about are the ones we try to help with MELT. Your joints lose space, your muscles become strained and often times weakened, and ultimately you increase your chances of feeling pain.
So here’s one more reason to stay hydrated and MELT for 10 minutes a day. If you stimulate the collagen matrix can cause positive pressure and tension to the connective tissue, you improve the ability for more, smaller, more microscopic vacuoles to manage it’s integrity. It’s a simple thing to do to your own body on a cellular level to help aid your body on a structural level sustain its longevity.
Complex science, yes. Hard to understand why you should want to know more about it, no. The MELT Method book is due out January 1st. It’s simple, easy, self-treatment you can do at home on your own in 10 minutes a day. More to come.