Why We get Butterflies In Our Stomachs

What are the types of butterflies that we get in our stomachs? I get that butterfly feeling when I'm feeling nervous or excited about something, and I can feel that surge of adrenalin. Sometimes it feels positive, but I've read that it can be really stressful to your body and health in general. It's like being in the "fight or flight" mode. Below is what I found about butterfly-in-the-stomach state.

What's the Medical Explanation?

When you get nervous or scared, your body gives you a shot of energy in the form of a naturally derived hormone (epinephrine = adrenaline) which is secreted from the adrenal glands. This process is a part of the sympathetic nervous system that all mammals . In situations of high stress, epinephrine is secreted in order to help the individual cope with the stress; physiologically, it allows the individual to increase his/her heart rate, which in turn, increases the rate of glycogenalysis, creating more energy and allowing the individual to run faster, jump higher, and perform better. In other words, it has to do with an automatic reaction of neurotransmitters that manifests in your stomach. The increase in heart rate, due to the stressful situation, is also commonly known as "nervousness". This nervousness can manifests into many symptoms including the "butterfly" feeling in the stomach. The related biological term is called "fight or flight", which is what you do to make the stressful situation go away....you either deal with it (fight) or get away from it (flight).

Panic Attack Symptom

At times, it can start with a mere butterfly inside the stomach. As you watch the clock strike each second, the butterfly seems to flutter faster, more intense, making you feel uncomfortable. Then, you begin to feel difficulty in breathing, palpitations, and profuse sweating. This is the usual combination an individual experiences during a panic attack. This episode is triggered by different events, most of which are situations that make a person feel nervous. Say, a job interview, speech in front of a crowd or merely anticipating for the next panic attack. There is no specific event that pushes this episode to surface. The only thing science knows is its connection to nerve-wracking incidents which can vary from one person to another.