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How to keep your heart in good condition

In terms of physiology and mental acuity, our natural human ability to survive and thrive is so extraordinary. But equally ‘extraordinary’ is our tendency to take it for granted sometimes.  

All it takes to get you out of bed at dawn is a command from your brain through electrical impulses fired from motor neurons in the spinal cord to your muscles. This brain action starts those brief movements that add up to a rosy day for you, including that early morning hand-to-mouth movement you make when taking your customary early morning drink to activate your body cells in readiness for the new day. 

Amidst these, let’s not forget who, or what, keeps these movements going for as long as we wish. Our dear four-chambered friend: The heart. Obviously, you know on some levels that your heart must always beat in order for you to stay alive. But do you really know how your heart works? You’ll be pleasantly surprised and appreciative of that little piece of information in a moment.

There are three functions your heart needs to do to get you going:

  • Regulating and keeping itself beating at a healthy rhythm: It achieves this through its electrical system. This electric system originates from the action of a specialized mass of tissue known as Sinus node, or Sinoatrial node. It is located within the upper right chamber of the heart (the right atrium). This tissue makes sure the heart beats in a regular pattern that signifies good health.
  • Keeping its own muscles healthy: In order for this to be possible, your heart needs its own supply of oxygen-rich blood pumped into its own muscles, by way of the coronary arteries.
  • Making sure there’s unobstructed flow of blood from it to the rest of the body: This is no small feat, considering the fact that the heart is the centre of operations of your body’s circulatory system.

You would agree, of course, that any problem that arises from any of the above functions not working according to its natural design will make up a big problem for your body. So it’s safe to conclude this: you need to keep your heart healthy.

With this in mind, what do you do exactly? Exercise? Yes, you’re quite right, as this has been shown by research over the years to help strengthen the heart. But you cannot rely on exercises alone, because exercises also rely on food, water, and other healthy drinks for the replenishment of energy lost when the body performs work and the repair of body cells. So what can you do to make your heart happy? Fortunately, it’s not rocket science. In fact, it’s as easy as a walk in the park. Here are three effective ways that can help save your heart and keep it happy. And just like you probably guessed above, it includes exercises.

  • Exercises: What your heart needs is a sustained activity which keeps it running steadily for a period, for example, low- or high-intensity cardio exercises. You can also throw in some sports like football, basketball, or other sports that keep you running.
  •  Healthy balanced diet: You probably wonder why the above bold subtitle includes ‘healthy’. A balanced diet comprises meals in adequate proportions, but may still include ‘meals’ with empty calories. Examples of foods with empty calories, i.e. calories with very low nutritional value, include cookies, cakes, chips and fries, energy drinks, sodas, fruit drinks with added sugar, to name a few. Your healthy balanced diet must include carbohydrate and protein foods, vegetables, and fruits, all in the right proportion.
  • Natural home-made supplements: Sometimes, your balanced diet may be healthy enough. But it may lack one thing or the other. If you’re having balanced foods with little fruits, you can get creative. You can plan making a blend of fruits to have on the go whenever you need them. Known as smoothies, they provide you with a blend of nutrients, which supplement your daily food intake.

Or you may decide to get these smoothies from your favorite grocery store, whether online or offline. Should you decide to do this, you can always look out for Boomsky Smoothies. Coming in a variety of blends that are good for the heart, including the all-orange variety, and the banana, watermelon and pineapple variety. Now you have nothing to worry about where your heart is concerned.

Author

Seyi Obalalu

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