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「心碎的科學」- The Science of Heartbreak


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From literature to plays and movies throughout the world, humanity's fascination with love is just as strong as our obsession with heartbreak. But is a broken heart simply an abstract concept? Or are there real physical effects on the body and the brain?
世界各地從文學到戲劇到電影,人類對愛情的迷戀就和我們對心碎的執迷不悟一樣強烈。但一顆破碎的心僅僅是個抽象的概念?還是對身體及腦袋有真正的生理影響呢?

Whenever you endure physical pain, such as a cut or injury, the Anterior Cingulate Cortex is stimulated. Surprisingly, it's the same region of the brain that's activated when you feel excluded or experience the lost of a social relationship. Perhaps physical pain and emotional pain aren't as different as we once thought.
不論何時你受到生理上的痛楚,像是割傷或是受傷,前扣帶皮層受到刺激。出乎意料地,這是當你感受到被排擠、或經歷一段社交關係的逝去時會活化的同一塊腦部區域。也許生理的痛楚和情緒上的痛苦不是像我們以往想的那麼不同。

Think about the ways in which we describe lost love. "He ripped my heart out!" "It was a slap in the face!" "I'm emotionally scarred!" This use of physical description paints a clear relationship, at least in language, between emotional and physical pain. In fact, studies have shown that human beings would rather be physically hurt than feel social exclusion. But, why would these two different experiences elicit the same feeling in our bodies?
想想我們形容逝去愛情的方式。「他撕碎了我的心!」「那是臉上一記耳光!」「我在感情上受創了!」這種生理描述的用法繪出了情緒及生理痛苦之間的清楚關係,至少在語言上。事實上,研究已顯示人類寧願受到生理傷害而不要受到社會排擠。但是,為什麼這兩種不同的體驗會引起我們身體裡相同的感受呢?

It's clear that our bodies use physical pain to prevent the risk of imminent danger. But from an evolutionary perspective, anything that increases our overall survival and fitness as a species is likely to persist. The rise of relationships and social bonds between lovers and friends alike became an important part of survival for many species. You look out for me, and I'll look out for you.
很清楚的是我們的身體使用生理疼痛來避免逼近威脅的危機。但是從演化角度,任何增進我們身為一個種族的整體存活和健康的東西有可能會留存。在情人和同樣地朋友之間關係以及社交聯繫的成長成了許多種族存活的一個重要部分。你照顧我,我也會照顧你。

And just like your desire to not be burned by hot coffee again, animals desire not to be socially alone. The pain from both instances increases our chance of survival by avoiding less desirable outcomes. You're more likely to survive and reproduce if you're not alone.
就像你不要再次被熱咖啡燙傷的渴望一樣,動物渴望不在社交上孤獨。這兩個例子中的痛苦藉由避免較不想要的結果增加我們存活的機會。如果你不孤零零的話,你更可能存活及繁衍後代。

This can be seen in studies of primates, who when separated from loved ones experience an increase in the hormone cortisol and a decrease in the hormone norepinephrine, causing a major stress response. Ultimately, this contributes to the depression, anxiety and loud crying documented. For humans, a break up, lost of a loved one, or isolation can trigger a similar reaction, creating the perception of physical pain.
這可以在靈長類的研究中看到,靈長類在與心愛的對象分開時會經歷賀爾蒙皮質醇的增加和去甲腎上腺素的減少,導致重大的壓力反應。最後,這促成憂鬱、焦慮和大聲哭嚎被觀察紀錄下來。對人類來說,分手、深愛的人的逝去或是孤立可以觸發相似的反應,產生生理痛苦的感知。

So how can we alleviate this pain? After all, band-aids or creams are meant for physical wounds. Studies have shown that high levels of social support are related to lower levels of pain, where socially alienated individuals show poor adjustment. So if you're feeling brokenhearted, surround yourself with friends and family, as difficult as it may seem. And if someone you know is suffering emotionally, be there for social support, because scientifically, as humans, we all just want to fit in somewhere.
所以我們可以怎麼減緩這痛苦?畢竟,OK繃或是藥膏是為了生理傷口的。研究表示高程度的社會支持與較低程度的痛苦相關,那樣的情況下社交疏離的人顯示出很差的調整能力。所以如果你感到心碎,讓朋友和家人在你周圍,它也許看起來很困難。如果你認識的某個人情緒上正受到傷害,在那提供社會支持,因為從科學角度,身為人類,我們全都只是想要融入某個地方。

This episode of Asapscience is supported by audible.com, the leading provider of audiobooks with over 150,000 downloadable titles across all types of literature. If you'd like to learn more about the brain, I recommend the book Thinking Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman. You can download this audiobook or another of your choice for free at audible.com/asap. Special thanks to audible for making these videos possible, and for offering you a free audiobook at audible.com/asap.
這集的Asapscience是由audible.com所贊助,其為擁有遍及各種文體、超過十五萬筆可供下載書單的首要有聲書供應商。如果你想要學更多有關腦的知識,我推薦Daniel Kahneman所寫的《快思慢想》。你可以在audible.com/asap免費下載這本有聲書或其他你的選擇。特別感謝audible讓製作這些影片得以成真,並感謝他們在audible.com/asap提供你們一份免費有聲書。

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