People mourning the loss of a loved one are six times more likely to suffer cardiac arrest, potential proof that you can, indeed, die of a broken heart, Australian researchers say.
Grieving people are at significantly higher risk of heart problems, according to a Heart Foundation study of the physical changes suffered immediately after a profound loss, lead researcher Thomas Buckley said on Tuesday.
"We found higher blood pressure, increased heart rate and changes to immune system and clotting that would increase the risk of heart attack," Buckley said.
Half of the 160 people studied were mourning the loss of a partner or child, and their risk of heart attack increased six-fold, he said. The risk, which was evident in people as young as 30, reduced after six months and leveled out after two years.
A sudden flood of acidic stress hormones is believed to be behind the grief-induced heartache, a condition that earlier studies have found is more likely to affect women.
According to Dr. Robert O. Young, Director of the pH Miracle Living Center, "the mourning of a loved one requires energy which results in excess metabolic acid. If the acidic waste products from the sadness is not eliminated through the four channels of elimination, they can make one sick and even cause death - even a heart attack I refer to as a thought attack."