Stress hormones

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Adrenalin - Adrenaline.svg
Noradrenaline - Noradrenaline.svg

Stress hormones are biochemical messenger substances that cause the body to adapt to particular stresses. They include the catecholamines and the glucocorticoids , both of which are produced in the adrenal gland. The actual function of the stress hormones is to release the body's energy reserves in preparation for an imminent flight or a fight - both are immediate reactions to a stressful situation.


When stressed , the catecholamines adrenaline and noradrenaline are released as stress hormones. Examples of stressful situations can e.g. B. heavy physical work, noise , competitive sport, psychological and mental stressful situations (fear of loss, fear of death, fear of failure or loss of face or serious illnesses ). The catecholamines predominate in short-term stress. The glucocorticoids, on the other hand, are released during long-term stress. Adrenocorticotropin (ACTH) is released via the mediation of the corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) , which stimulates the synthesis and release of the glucocorticoid cortisol from the adrenal cortex .

The main factor that controls the ACTH release is probably the CRH, but stress in any form also leads to the release of arginine vasopressin (AVP) and the activation of the sympathetic nerve , both of which promote the ACTH release again.

The plasma concentration of prolactin also increases with exercise, although the physiological significance is still unclear.

In the same way, β-endorphin can be detected to an increased extent in the blood shortly after the start of exercise.

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Wiktionary: stress hormone  - explanations of meanings, word origins, synonyms, translations