Health & Fitness

How To Keep Your Heart Healthy?

Ever since people started researching how the human body works, the heart has been the centre of scrutiny as well...

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E ver since people started researching how the human body works, the heart has been the centre of scrutiny as well as a source of constant fascination as to how such a small organ can be, in a way, the reason our bodies are working. But the main question remains, how to keep your heart healthy?

Your heart consists of a specialized kind of muscle called cardiac muscle, which has gap junctions in between to help stimulate flow through the body. Ever felt nervous and your heart starts beating really fast? That's your brain telling your heart to prepare to pump as much blood through the body as possible. In the old days, being in danger meant that you had to either flee or fight to protect your life, which is why adrenaline drives the heart to pump faster so that we can respond to danger quickly. 

What Does Your Heart Actually Do?

Overtime, people have made connections between the heart and romance but it is a misinformed opinion as your heart really has nothing to do with emotions. Poets and artists, among others, have written countless things about how their heart hurts because of a certain romantic problem, but in reality, your heart really does none of it.

Let's talk about what your heart actually does. The main function of your heart is to pump blood full of oxygen through the body with the help of elastic tissue and constant resistance through arteries. In addition to that, your heart also distributes hormones and other metabolites through your body, being a focal point of many functions. Maintaining blood pressure is also something your heart is a pro at, which is why in cases of low or high blood pressure, medications are given which alter how the heart beats.

How To Keep Your Heart Healthy?

Now that we are in an era where everyone wants results hard and fast, it is difficult to keep up with lifestyles without ignoring your physical and mental health. Every aspect of life demands hard work and quick results, which means that there isn't enough time for you to focus on your own health. But here are a few tips on how to keep your heart healthy in spite of fast paced life: 

  1. Healthy eating is very important to have a healthy heart. It is no longer difficult to make a diet specifically catered to your needs with the help of a nutritionist. Such a diet should contain an adequate amount of fiber, carbohydrates, fats and protein.
  2. Talking about health, we obviously have to talk about a good exercise regime. This can vary from running, jogging, aerobic exercise, yoga, and any other exercise that gets your heart pumping. It should not be seen as a chore but more as something you look forward to, and release your stress of the day.
  3. Smoking is not the healthiest of habits especially when it comes to your heart. Smoking causes your heart to enlarge and is a risk factor for various kinds of cancer including lung cancer. Let's just say you may enjoy smoking but your heart certainly does not!
  4. Just like smoking, for some people, alcohol can become a getaway place to escape to. It is not only dangerous in ways now shown in media, but it also causes irreversible changes in your heart including hardening of walls and prolapse of its valves. Alcohol in moderation, however, can be beneficial!
  5. Managing stress is actually as important as managing other physical factors as it can cause your heart to beat unusually fast and be prone to heart attacks. Some good ways to manage stress are journaling, yoga, meditation and good long baths!
  6. Mental health is an additional factor to keep the physical state of your heart healthy. Make sure to not miss appointments with your therapist and to ensure you are being the best version of yourself, both physically and mentally!

Regular Testing

Routine checkups are a necessity for a healthy body. For your heart, this includes an ECG (electrocardiograph) and an echo every six to twelve months, varying with your age and risk factors.

Many heart diseases are hereditary and others may develop with time. Heart attacks can be quite scary, hence, it's important to keep yourself up to date with your family history. Here are a few statistics for your knowledge! It is always important to learn how to keep your heart healthy for a good and long life.

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