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  • Writer's pictureHealth Wise Chinese Medicine Consultancy Ltd

Impact Of "The Fight Or Flight Response" On Fertility

Today we'll be discussing how the "Fight Or Flight Response" can affect fertiity. You can also learn more about Chinese Medicine treatments for Fertility and Pregnancy at Health Wise.

Traditional Chinese Medicine has been used for centuries to improve fertility and increase the chances of pregnancy. It emphasizes the importance of nourishing the body to create a healthy environment for conception. We believe pregnancy comes when the body is in balance, and we try to focus beyond just the reproductive system and instead look at the problem holistically.

Health Wise has over 30 years of clinical experience and our team understands the challenges that can arise with fertility issues. Contact us today if you're interested in making a booking:

Call: +852 2526 7908

Whatsapp: +852 9855 2840



Article Contents:

Day-to-Day Stress and Tension
Impact Of The Fight Or Flight Response On Fertility?

How Does Stress Affect Fertility?

Time and again, stress is often attributed as the root cause for a plethora of health issues that people experience. It plays a role from lack of sleep to colds; shoulder tension to fertility challenges.

Stress can affect our physiology, which in turn can affect the intricate inner workings of our body. Here at Health Wise, we understand the critical role that stress management plays in fertility, let's delve deeper into the correlation between stress, the fight or flight response and fertility.

When our bodies do not feel safe, "the fight or flight response" is activated, resulting in decreased reproductive function. This response prepares our bodies for danger, diverting energy and blood flow away from digestive and reproductive organs towards our muscles. Increased heart rate, elevated blood pressure, and heightened muscle readiness characterize this physiological state, allowing us to either flee or confront the perceived threat.

The challenge for conceiving occurs when the body perceives a threat that triggers this response even when the situation does not warrant such a primal reaction. Everyday stressors including financial troubles, relationship issues, or even minor inconveniences like struggling to find a taxi can activate "the fight or flight response".

Here are some bodily responses that occur during the "fight or flight" state:

  • Increased heart rate and breathing

  • Flushed or pale skin

  • Impaired digestion

  • Constriction of blood vessels in internal organs

  • Release of metabolic energy sources for muscle action

  • Dilation of blood vessels in muscles

  • Pupil dilation

  • Inhibited erection

  • Hearing loss

  • Loss of peripheral vision

  • Disinhibited spinal reflexes

  • Shaking

Only once our "fight or flight response" subsides can our rest and digest response be activated, this is also known as the feed and breed response. This is when blood flow is redirected to our internal organs, creating a sense of safety and tranquility. The following are bodily responses that occur during the rest and digest state:

  • Pupil constriction

  • Decreased heart rate and breathing

  • Lowered blood pressure

  • Stimulation of digestive glands

  • Increased saliva secretion

  • Enhanced blood flow to reproductive organs

  • Feelings of safety and well-being

Traditional Chinese Medicine provides effective therapies to help the body transition from the "fight or flight" state to the feed and breed state. Let's take a look at how TCM can help

How Does TCM Help With Fertility?

Reducing Stress

As we covered above, stress is often a key contributing factor to fertility issues. When the body experiences the "fight or flight response" it elevates cortisol levels to respond to the situation. With limited time, energy and resources, your body will prioritise your stress response over your reproductive system. TCM helps to reduce stress levels and create an internal environment that can improve fertility.

Improving Blood Flow

TCM can improve blood flow to the reproductive system for healthy egg development through acupuncture and herbal therapy. Acupuncture helps to improve blood flow to the uterus improving egg quality, while certain herbs, such as Red Raspberry Leaf and Dong Quai, are known to improve blood flow to the reproductive system. TCM herbs should be used under the guidance of an experienced practitioner to avoid any adverse reactions.

Balancing Hormones

TCM can help to balance hormones and create a better environment for conception. Modalities such as acupuncture and herbal medicine can help to regulate the menstrual and improve hormonal balance.

Improving Digestion & Boosting Nutrition

Good nutrition and a well-functioning digestive system is essential for absorbing nutrients that are important for healthy egg development. TCM can help through dietary changes and herbal therapy. Learn more about foods for fertility in our article here.

Supporting the Kidney System

In TCM, the kidneys are considered to be the foundation of reproductive health. TCM modalities can help to nourish the kidney system and improve pregnancy outcomes.

What Can You Expect From TCM Treatments


Acupuncture is a key component of TCM for fertility. Here at Health Wise, we use acupuncture to treat patients who are experiencing fertility issues, as well as for those who are undergoing IVF, and we are proud of our success rates.

Our positive experiences at the clinic are reflected in research that shows acupuncture can promote blood circulation in the pelvic cavity and improve ovarian function. Acupuncture can be beneficial in promoting follicle production, enhancing uterine blood flow, and improving uterine lining thickness.

In addition, it can also help to decrease uterine contractions after embryo transfer. A study has shown numerous benefits of acupuncture for IVF in women who previously experienced failed IVF attempts. Acupuncture sessions are typically recommended to be once or twice a week.

Herbal Therapy

TCM uses herbal remedies to improve fertility. These herbal remedies are provided in the form of powdered teas curated to suit your body's unique pattern of symptoms. Practitioners may also recommend supplements to assist the process. This study shows that TCM herbs can effectively help to improve ovarian and uterine function, enhance endometrial thickness, promote embryonic nidation, and enhance egg quality, which results in a higher success rate in IVF.

Dietary Recommendations

TCM also emphasizes the importance of a healthy diet for fertility. Recommendations may include adding fertility-boosting foods to your diet. If you would like to learn more about foods for fertility, visit our article here.

Lifestyle Recommendations

Practitioners may also recommends certain lifestyle changes to improve fertility. In addition have you ever wondered whether your immune system could be stopping your pregnancy? Learn more in our article here.

Traditional Chinese medicine can be helpful for improving fertility and increasing the chances of pregnancy however it is important to note that TCM is not a "quick fix".

Bringing your body back into balance may take time depending on your condition and the extent of fertility issues that you are experiencing. It requires time and commitment to see results, and it's important to work with a qualified TCM practitioner who can customize a treatment plan to your specific needs.

Safety Of Traditional Chinese Medicine For Pregnancy?

“Is Traditional Chinese Medicine safe for pregnancy?” is a common question we get. In short, the answer is: ‘Yes it is safe’. Research from a systematic review has shown that undergoing acupuncture is safe during pregnancy when applied correctly. There are a number of acupuncture points and herbal ingredients that our pracitioners at Health Wise are trained to avoid for pregnant women to ensure safe outcomes.

Our team has over 30 years of clinical experience helping patients. You can rest assured that our experienced Traditional Chinese Medicine practitioners who are legally registered to pracitice in Hong Kong will safely guide you through the process. We specialize in fertility, and under our care you are in safe hands.

Call: +852 2526 7908

Whatsapp: +852 9855 2840



Learn More About Chinese Medicine

We hope you enjoyed this article. Here's another series of articles that we think that you may enjoy:

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