Heartbreak Health

As featured in "Chicago Woman" magazine's September-October 2017 edition

By Gemma Allen

Breaking up can wreak havoc on your life and lifestyle. First, there’s all the emotional ups and downs. Couple that with a potential sudden need to move, concerns about finances, and the challenges of shuttling the children back and forth, and it shouldn’t be surprising that your personal health can suffer.

A study in a leading healthcare journal showed that people who divorce have a higher rate of chronic conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. But there are ways to combat the mental and physical side effects of separation.

Eat a healthy diet. Start by taking care of your physical needs. Dump the comfort food and commit to a balanced diet with the requisite fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. Do you really need that pizza and Proseco?

Indulge in stress-busting activities. Join a gym, hire a personal trainer, or take up jogging. Sign up for yoga, Taekwondo, or meditation. Try something you haven’t done before such as a book club or pottery class.

Get social. Social support from good friends is a proven way to relieve stress. If you need something more, seek out a social worker, therapist, or a member of the clergy who can serve as a sounding board while providing valuable coping insights and mechanisms.

Will you ever find love again? It may not seem so now, but people who do often regain their health and equally important, experience greater happiness…all good reasons to start taking better care of you.

Gemma Allen is an experienced divorce attorney dedicated to providing the best results for families. www.laddenallen.com or gemmallen@laddenallen.com.

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