The Worst Things You Can Do for Your Heart

Be a Negative Nancy

Your mental health can have a surprising effect on your heart health. Research has found that frequently experiencing high levels of anger, like having frequent temper tantrums, is bad for your heart. A study published in Circulation found that people who were more angry but had normal blood pressure were more prone to have coronary artery disease (CAD) or a heart attack. But it’s not just anger that’s bad for your heart — other extreme, negative emotions, such as anxiety and depression, may also play a role. These negative emotions trigger a “fight or flight” response. These responses are helpful in emergency situations, but not when they happen frequently. This study also found that anger can disrupt the body’s electrical impulses and provoke heart rhythm disturbances.

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Review Date: 
March 19, 2015

Last Updated:
March 24, 2015