Stress, Portrait of a Killer

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The stress response: in the beginning it saved our lives, making us run from predators and enabling us to take down prey. Today, human beings are turning on the same life-saving physical reaction to cope with 30-year mortgages, $4 a gallon gasoline, final exams, difficult bosses and even traffic jams — we can’t seem to turn it off. So, we’re constantly marinating in corrosive hormones triggered by the stress response.

Now, scientists are showing just how measurable — and dangerous — prolonged exposure to stress can be. Stanford University neurobiologist, MacArthur “genius” grant recipient, and renowned author Robert Sapolsky reveals new answers to why and how chronic stress is threatening our lives in Killer Stress, a National Geographic Special. The hour-long co-production of National Geographic Television and Stanford University was produced exclusively for public television.

In this revelatory film, discoveries occur in an extraordinary range of places, from baboon troops on the plains of East Africa to the office cubes of government bureaucrats in London to neuroscience labs at the nation’s leading research universities. Groundbreaking research reveals surprising facts about the impact of stress on our bodies: how it can shrink our brains, add fat to our bellies and even unravel our chromosomes. Understanding how stress works can help us figure out ways to combat it and mitigate negative impacts on our health.

Stress, Portrait of a Killer, 9.5 out of 10 based on 45 ratings

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  • Rk33

    Indicative of life as we live it:( are we smart enough to learn from Apes?I got so much from this doc:)

  • Lyall14bb

    Loved this Doc. The establishment of Meritocracies through the expansion of Western Capitalism has brought about a strange Paradox…although the standard of living of the lower classes has increased, the stress levels have risen giving rise to new disease paradigms

    .In todays lower classes, comparisons are made with their peers of today rather then  with their peers of the past creating a general sense of unease and a nervous stress response that is shortening their life spans.
    Interesting that in the end this can be halted by how the lower classes interpret their position and how much control they perceive to have in their environment.Enjoyed this thoroughly. 

  • Lyall14bb

    Loved this Doc. The establishment of Meritocracies through the expansion of Western Capitalism has brought about a strange Paradox…although the standard of living of the lower classes has increased, the stress levels have risen giving rise to new disease paradigms

    .In todays lower classes, comparisons are made with their peers of today rather then  with their peers of the past creating a general sense of unease and a nervous stress response that is shortening their life spans.
    Interesting that in the end this can be halted by how the lower classes interpret their position and how much control they perceive to have in their environment.Enjoyed this thoroughly. 

  • alfredo z

    Really great Doc , a must watch it, thanks for posting it :)

  • Ramsetti

    Fantastic documentary  this society is sick .

    • CrackedPepper86

      This society created this fantastic documentary.

      • Guesswho

        You’re a moron.

      • Guesswho

        You’re a moron.

  • Ramsetti

    Fantastic documentary  this society is sick .

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  • LLonDon

    now im stressed about being stressed :(

  • Nadia

    An important documentary!

  • Nadia

    An important documentary!

  • The Elz

    interesting to show causes, but didnt offer anything much on dealing with stress.

  • Myasdiab

    wankers

  • Pcournoyer59

    I like this one on stress since I find myself continuously stressed.It is an awakening for me to slow down and relax,  Relax, and laugh more and not be so serious all the time. Thanks for sharing this Documentary to us on the lower ranks when in all reality I am on the higher ranks of my life. Again Thank you so much.   Trish

  • Pcournoyer59

    I like this one on stress since I find myself continuously stressed.It is an awakening for me to slow down and relax,  Relax, and laugh more and not be so serious all the time. Thanks for sharing this Documentary to us on the lower ranks when in all reality I am on the higher ranks of my life. Again Thank you so much.   Trish

  • Donmichaelbarnett40

    do that make me a killer?

  • Donmichaelbarnett40

    do that make me a killer?

  • Donmichaelbarnett40

    do that make me a killer?

  • http://www.facebook.com/spencerhewett Spencer Hewett

    Wouldn’t people in high ranking positions be under more stress, such as the CEO of GM, since they have so much responsibility and so many people’s livelihoods riding on their performance?

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  • Therisonlyone Altito

    Well done Doc!

  • JC Walsh

    Very good really. It shows deadly effects of stress + causes and basically that an attitude change is needed and more social interaction ncessary. 10/10. 

  • Nilaine

    The quesition is: HOW do we transform our society?

  • princess

    Very interesting love it!! Awesome documentary…

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