“Eat your heart out” meaning: 3 examples of how to use it in a sentence

The aim of this article is to find out what the meaning of “Eat your heart out” is and how you can use it in a sentence. “Eat your heart out” is something we use in our everyday vocabulary. Sometimes it can be ironic or factual, there are so many instances of “Eat your heart out” being used. But first, let’s find out what “Eat your heart out” means.

What does “Eat your heart out” mean?

“Eat your heart out” is an idiom in the English language that is typically spoken by an individual as a way of asserting a form of superiority over the individual they are talking to. When “Eat your heart out” is being used, it is simply to show some form of implication that the individual that is being addresses like this, is most likely jealous of the speaker for whatever reason. In most cases, the phrase “Eat your heart out” is being used to compare the person speaking to someone else that is noted for or extremely skilled at that action that initial speaker is referencing. The meaning of “Eat your heart out” stems from the fact that someone has to eat their heart out because they are considered to be frustrated.

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Where does “Eat your heart out” originate from?

When it comes to the origins of “Eat you heart out there appears to be a plethora of answers pertaining to its origin. However, the earliest reference of “Eat your heart out” dates back to Ancient Greece, in 850 BC, where it was discovered in The Iliad, Homer’s classical text. This appears to suggest that “Eat your heart out” which we commonly use in our lexicon today was also uttered by the Ancient Greeks. It could also be said that this links shows that the phrase originates from Greek Mythology.

The myth in question which could have created the phrase has to do with Bellerophon who was said to be eating his heart out as a sing of grief when the Artemis and Ares killed his children. Since The Iliad was created, the idea that grief tends to eat at the heart has long expanded to also include a vast array of emotions, negative ones in fact, with the most prevalent one being jealousy. Ever since the Ancient Chinese scriptures and Vedic text were discovered, both which predate Ancient Greece, the heart has been shown to connect to one’s emotional wellbeing. This could be for a host of reasons,

We tend to feel our heart beat quicker whenever intense emotions are experienced. These strong emotions such as shock, jealousy, grief, love and fear can make our hearts race. Additionally, it could also be that the heart is very important to our survival and when intense grief is felt, such as one would feel when one loses their children, it can cause them to no longer want to exist. It is this grief-associated feeing that takes away the will to live which gives birth to the phrase “Eat your heart out”

3 Examples of how to use “Eat your heart out” in a sentence

Using “Eat your heart out” in a sentence to signify that great anguish or grief over someone or something

In this instance, you are using the foundational meaning of the phrase, which is highlighting yours or someone else’s grief.

“Jane has been eating her heart out over that silly jerk since he jilted her for his secretary. Don’t eat your heart out, dear. There’s plenty more fish in the sea. Plus, Sarah, you didn’t really like him all that much, did you?”

Using “Eating your heart out” in a sentence to signify that you are sad about something

This instance is just as similar to the one above. The only difference is the intensity of the emotion felt.

“I just feel terribly awful for Jane-

She’s been eating her heart out ever since she discovered that her favourite college rejected her”


“Hey, I just found out that my job application was rejected. It sucks because I was looking forward to working there. Guess I have no other option but to eat my heart out.”

Using “Eat your heart out” in a sentence to signify jealousy

In this instance, using “Eat your heart out” simply to highlight someone’s jealousy or telling them that they are going to be jealous

Jemma: Guess who I’m going to the prom with? James the star quarterback

Ashley: No way!!

Jemma: Yes way, bet you want to eat your heart out!

Ashley: I certainly do


“Guess who just got tickets to see the band perform at the biggest concert in the whole world? Me that’s who. I bet you want to eat your heart out, since you have to go out of town with your parents”