Healthytarian Minutes with holistic teacher Evita Ochel. This episode explains what the fight or flight response is and how it can impact our health and wellbeing.

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Video Transcript

When a potential threat triggers the stress response by our brain, it initiates the Fight or Flight Response. This is activated by the autonomic nervous system, as a response to acute stress.

Physically, this results in a release of adrenaline and other stress-response hormones, increased heart rate and breathing, constricting of blood vessels and tightening of muscles. Our appetite shuts down, blood is directed to large muscles, and our body is prepared to take on the threat or run from it.

Psychologically, this response results in instinctive behavior. Whether we face the threatening stimuli or remove ourselves from it, depends on how the brain judges the risk factor, based on the level of perceived threat and past experience with such stimuli. If the brain cannot decide on the better course of action, this can cause us to feel verbally or physically paralyzed.

This response is most easily illustrated during conflict between two people, where the fight response would be to stay and engage in a verbal attack and the flight response would be to walk away from the person.

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