Beware - Your Broken Heart Should Come With A Health Warning!
Let me help you prevent heartache turning into ill-health.
Most people can identify with the upset Kate Middleton’s probably going through. When a significant relationship ends the pain of heartbreak is palpable. That pain is your body’s way of telling you it's in physical distress due to your emotional distress.
You can’t separate strong emotions from your physical wellbeing so it's important to make sure your health doesn't suffer while your heart is. Research shows that women in particular have an increased risk of heart problems after a break-up. But both men and women are liable to experience more gastro-intestinal tract problems, tension headaches, insomnia, depression and anxiety at this time.
Here are six key things to do while you're on that emotional roller-coaster of recovery. Use the following as they apply to your experience:
Probably the most important thing to recognise is the incredible healing power of love. It's been shown that those who get support from trusted friends and family during this difficult time are less likely to get ill and recover more quickly from the break-up. When we feel loved and supported our bodies continue functioning, as they should. Not only should you be honest with loved ones when you're having a bad day but also enjoy their company on good days too. At least touch base on the phone with them each day.
Self-neglect is a common symptom of heartbreak. People lose weight from picking at their food or gain it through comfort eating. Eat regularly and make dates with family and friends so you sit down to proper mealtimes. Resist ready-made meals. Cooking is more nutritious and takes your mind off your break-up. Choose “good-mood” foods like oily fish, turkey, wholegrain breads and pastas. Top-up your body's requirements with a quality multivitamin.
Sleep Can Nurture You -
It’s extremely common to have sleep disturbance while distressed. Usually this is due to turning over thoughts in your mind about issues like, “what went wrong?” The more fatigued you get, the more prone to picking up every virus going. Develop a good sleep routine with a soothing bath, a cup of camomile or "night-time" tea, and a good read.
The stress of a break-up (as any type of stress) definitely predisposes you to all sorts of health problems. Take time each day to relax. Choose a quiet place where you’re comfortable and warm. Let go of thoughts of your ex. Instead focus on a calming scene perhaps from your last happy holiday. Continue to clear your mind of any negative, unhappy thoughts so they don’t ruin your relaxation.
Fire Up Your Energy Levels -
Exercise is important for boosting your endorphin levels - those feel-good brain chemicals that are essential when you're feeling sad. This is the perfect time to try a new sport or active hobby. Not only does it prove your new found independence by doing things that you never tried with your ex, but you can boost your general fitness, too.
A Little Of What You Fancy -
There’s much temptation to drink away your sorrows. However too much alcohol and partying is extremely detrimental to your health and acts as a depressant on your system making you feel even worse! Allow yourself one/two drinks, then swap to non-alcoholic ones. Turn to a friend rather then drinking when feeling down.
Published in The Express Newspaper