How Our Body Responds to Stress

Posted July 3rd, 2008

Once we are put under stress our body immediately begins to react and there are certain specific things you will be able to notice in your body. Over time, these stress elements can build up and often cause inherent health problems with our bodies. Once we are stressed, our body immediately begins to react.

Humans have innately developed a “fight or flight” response to stressful or threatening situations over the years. Several things happen under stress: On occasion, these responses can be good, but most of the time, it is merely an overreaction to a situation that causes this stress and it can eventually harm your physical health.

Resulting symptoms could be…

Blood flow to brain and muscles increase/Concentration heightens – Tension headache, migraines, anxiety, moods

Your heart rate increases – Chest pains, raised blood pressure

Breathing becomes more rapid – Clammy, sweaty feelings.

Digestion pauses to allow for more energy – Heartburn, indigestion, ulcers

Muscle tension increases – Aches, pains, muscle spasms

Other than the physical functions carried on by our body, stress can damage our bodies in other ways. When we are under stress, we often tend to abuse our body. This can include poor lifestyle choices such as eating fatty and greasy foods, drinking too much caffeine or alcohol, or even abusing prescription or illegal drugs. All these can have a secondary affect on the body caused by stress


This article is an excerpt from the workbook in the training material, ‘Stress Management’, which is available from our website at


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