A broken heart is never fun, can be tough to cope with and difficult to mend, but sadly, happens all the time. There can even be physical symptoms of heartbreak. Chances are you’re either going through it now or have gone through it in the past. You know those scars.
They might even still be fresh. And, whether good or bad, you likely came out different on the other side. Still, very few would wish a broken heart on their worst enemy; it’s something no one wants to experience. So, what can we learn from it and how can we grow?
Here are 10 True Facts About Having Your Heart Broken:
1. Breakups can trigger depression.
Because breakups directly affect a person’s self-esteem and can be humiliating, it has a greater likelihood of causing depression than if you had heartbreak from the death of a loved one. Researchers at the Virginia Commonwealth University came to this conclusion after studying 7,000 male and female twins during stressful life events.
2. They’re harder on women.
According to a study published in Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, for women, recovery after a breakup was greatly hindered if not entirely stalled. As the number of splits increased, the mental health of women down-spiraled. The study included 2,137 men and 2,303 women under age 65.
3. You might lose weight.
The heartbreak diet is real. People do lose weight after breakups. Of course, loss of appetite due to stress is a key factor. According to a study by Forza Supplements, women on average lose five pounds when someone breaks up with them. But the breakup has to happen to them rather than the other way around.
4. You might gain weight.
Depending on your personality and how you handle stress, you might also gain weight. It’s no secret; stress eaters will immediately run to a pint of Ben and Jerry’s, pizza, and a bucket-load of snacks for comfort, and this instinct will be in overdrive after a breakup. So, be careful not to overdo it. You’ll just regret it later.
5. Women turn to wine, not ice cream.
While romantic comedies love to show women shoving ice cream in their faces after a breakup, a survey of 1,300 people by YourTango.com found the number one comfort women turned to was wine, followed closely by chocolate.
6.Heartbreak can lower your immune system.
Yes, someone breaking up with you can actually make you sick. Prolonged stress can cause inflammation and mess up your gut microbiomes, which will compromise your immune system. So, the key is to manage your stress levels.
7. Breakups are like drug withdrawal.
When you’re in love, you trigger the same chemicals in your body that a drug would, like nicotine and cocaine. Love can become an addiction. When that love is taken away during a breakup, the symptoms can be similar to drug withdrawal.
8. Prepare for intrusive thoughts.
Just when you think you’re over your ex, your brain will hit you like a hammer with intrusive thoughts of them. Maybe you smelled something that reminded you of them or you saw a picture of your favorite place to eat. Whatever it is, you now can’t get your mind off of them. In these times, do everything you can to limit your thoughts.
9. Your brain might think you’re in physical pain.
A study by neuroscientists at Columbia University found that the brain regions that light up during physical pain will do the same during a breakup. Researchers disagree on whether this means your brain interprets a breakup as physically painful or not, but if anything, it sure considers it important enough to kick into high gear.
10. You might do crazy things.
As we said, a breakup is like withdrawal and can mess up your perception of reality and make you do some crazy stuff, including Facebook stalking your ex for hours or driving by their house. A heartbroken person may obsess and crave another person, just like a drug addicted person would a drug.