• Question: What happens in our body when we get a rush of adrenalin???

    Asked by emilemon to Adam, Faye, Martin, Samantha on 23 May 2012.
    • Photo: Adam Bibbey

      Adam Bibbey answered on 23 May 2012:

      We can get a rush of adrenaline due to either starting exercise (physical reasons) or become stressed/fearful (psychological reasons).

      In each case there is an area in the brain called the medulla, which when activated sends a signal and causes release of adrenaline from our adrenal glands (these are placed just on top of your kidneys).

      The main effect of this is to cause your heart rate to increase.

      Hope this helps, any more questions then please ask!

    • Photo: Faye Didymus

      Faye Didymus answered on 26 May 2012:

      Hi emilemon! That’s a great question!

      When you perceive something as threatening or exciting, the hypothalamus in the brain signals to the adrenal glands that it’s time to produce adrenaline and other stress hormones. The adrenal glands produce adrenaline by transforming an amino acid (tyrosine) into dopamine. Oxygenation of dopamine makes something called noradrenaline, which is then converted into adrenaline.

      Adrenaline then rushes out and binds to receptors on the heart, arteries, pancreas, liver, muscles and fatty tissue. By binding to receptors on the heart and arteries, adrenaline increases heart rate and respiration, and by binding to receptors on the pancreas, liver, muscles and fatty tissue, it inhibits the production of insulin and stimulates the synthesis of sugar and fat, which the body can use as a fuel in fight-or-flight situations.

      I hope that answers your question! 🙂