New research shows why heartbreak isn't just a turn of phrase
Researchers have discovered that being dumped causes more than just emotional pain - it can actually make your heart stop. Psychological trauma, like romantic rejection, upsets your nervous system and slows your heart rate to the point that it can stop beating temporarily. Boffins (at the University of Amsterdam and Leiden University in the Netherlands) think this response could also be the reason why you find it hard to eat or sleep after a hard break-up, because the same area of your brain processes both physical and emotional pain. Essentially, your body responds in a similar way to being dumped as it would to being punched.
ZEST SAYS: This study showed that the more rejected you feel, the slower your heart rate becomes, but it actually only looked at participants' immediate reactions rather how heart ache affects you in the long term. Those of us who've ever been dumped probably don't need a scientist to tell us that emotional pain can take a long time to heal. If you have experienced - or are still experiencing - the emotional fall-out after the end of your relationship, post a question today for advice from Zest's expert psychologist, Emma Kenny.
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