Please note that this is an Archived article and may contain content that is out of date. The use of she/her/hers pronouns in some articles is not intended to be exclusionary. Eating disorders can affect people of all genders, ages, races, religions, ethnicities, sexual orientations, body shapes, and weights.

There’s a long history of people seeing the body and mind as two separate things. However, much research has shown, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirms, there is a relationship between mental health and your physical, beating heart.

The research has found that the relationship is reciprocal, meaning:

  • Mental health concerns can put you at a higher risk of heart disease.
  • Heart disease is linked to a higher risk of mental health problems.

Researchers also found that depression, anxiety, stress and post-traumatic stress can all affect heart health by increasing hormone levels. These hormones can increase heart rate and blood pressure and impact blood flow. Over time, these physical consequences of mental health issues can put individuals at risk for heart disease.

Conversely, the CDC reports that mental health disorders can surface after experiencing heart failure, stroke or heart attack. They can cause a person to be anxious about death or disability, and the financial burden of ongoing rehabilitation after a heart event can be overwhelming and add another level of stress and uncertainty.

Heart health is mental health, and the other way around. Care for both, by talking to your doctor about heart and mental healthcare and lead a holistically healthy life.

For more information about the physical and emotional concerns associated with eating disorders, click here. Call us today at 888.224.8250 for a no-cost assessment or visit to learn more.