I’m no stranger to heartbreak. After one divorce and several breakups, I know how terrible a failed romance can feel. Like a heart attack, there’s pain, shortness of breath, regret for not heeding the warning signs, and ultimately, a long road back to recovery.
A healthy heart allows you to thrive because it sustains your body with proper blood flow, delivering nutrients that nourish every cell and organ every minute of every day. A healthy emotional heart allows you to stay open to romance. Both are necessary for you to shine.
After my divorce, eager to mend my broken heart, I sat with a notebook and sketched out exactly what I wanted my life to look like, and what I hoped to find in a future mate. This list gave me solace because it gave me direction. Rather than falling victim to my feelings, I was inspired by my potential future. Instead of cowering in fear, I tossed out hope and then, taking one step at a time, I walked my way into a life that suits me far better than the married life I was living. While my ex continues to be one of my very best friends, we both agree we are better off apart.
A broken heart can be a catalyst for change in how you operate your romantic life, much like surviving a heart attack can be a wake-up call to the fact that you need to change the way you treat your body. Both events may lead to soul searching, helping you find a path that will keep you from ever experiencing that sort of pain or heartache again. Often times in relationships, there were signs letting you know that the one you’re with is not the one that’s right, and had you heeded them, you’d likely save yourself months, or years of grief. The same is true of your heart.
I meet many people who’ve been diagnosed with high blood pressure, elevated cholesterol levels or type 2 diabetes, all harbingers that their heart is under duress. Rather than looking at these symptoms as warning signs of potential danger and taking stock of their habits, they instead take the easy road to management by taking meds. Like a trip to Paris to save a failing romance, it’s akin to putting a band-aid on a deep wound. Taking meds without changing your eating and lifestyle habits will likely lead to more meds and ultimately more dis-ease.
Your heart is the most important organ for your immediate survival. If it shuts down or short circuits, you may not have a second chance to map out your rehabilitation. Yet the heart is resilient. If you give it the nourishment it needs to thrive, it will respond in kind. Just like in love, the more you give, the more you get.
February was heart health month and I hope that you have learned how you can manage your blood pressure, cholesterol and other risk factors in order to have a vibrantly healthy heart that will help you prosper in life and love. A few key changes to your diet or lifestyle might be just the thing you need in order to maintain its health and integrity.
Your body’s language is expressed in its vitality or its symptoms, much like the intuitive hits that inform you whether a lover is right for you. The question is, will you heed it? If your heart is speaking to you in either way, I encourage you to listen.
I would love to hear your thoughts and experiences on how nutritious food has helped you heal through physical or emotional heartache. Let me know in the comment section below.
Chocolate Covered Strawberries
To accompany today’s food for thought, here is one of my favorite heart-healthy recipes from the archives — nutrition packed in delicious and beautiful bite sized treats!