The human heart is one of the most fascinating and strong parts of our bodies. Each person is born with one, feels emotions with one, and survives off of its function. Without a heart, we would not have life.
Do we take what the heart does for granted? We often underestimate the amount of work it does without us having to think twice about it.
We want to share some facts about the heart to broaden understanding of how truly remarkable it is.
We know it pumps blood to our body, pumps faster when we exercise, and pumps consistently whether we are awake or asleep.
But did you know that the heart pumps about 2,500 gallons of blood a day? That equals out to about 2 oz of blood every heartbeat.
Over 70 trillion cells in the body receive blood and oxygen from the heart, making it essential for the heart to continuously pump blood.
Men’s hearts weigh about 10 oz while women’s hearts weigh about 8 oz, roughly half of a pound. To make up for smaller size, a woman’s heart beats 8 beats more a minute than a man’s.
Despite not weighing much, the heart beats nearly 100,000 times a day and never fatigues, unless there are factors of high blood pressure or cholesterol. Could you imagine squishing a stress ball 100,000 times a day without getting tired?
Chambers of the Heart
The heart has four chambers that flow to different parts of the body and have different functions.
Right ventricle: Pumps deoxygenated blood to lungs
Left ventricle: Pumps oxygenated to the body
Left atrium: Receives oxygenated blood from lungs and pumps it to the left ventricle
Right atrium: Receives deoxygenated blood to the lungs
These four chambers are responsible for circulating blood and maintaining constant blood flow throughout the body.
Your heart doesn’t only work hard when you’re relaxing, it works even harder when you exercise or even get startled or scared.
Your heart automatically responds to your body’s need for more oxygen and blood flow during exercise.
Exercise creates need for more energy to the muscle. And that energy comes from oxygen enriched blood.
During a scary or intense movie, you may notice that your heart rate spikes and adrenaline races momentarily from your “fight or flight” instinct.
Your brain fires warnings to the rest of your body (even though you may know it’s just a movie and isn’t real) that you need to react one way or another and to prepare for battle.
Your heart needs to pump blood and oxygen to your muscles so they can react quickly to the situation, causing increased heart rate.
Despite being a pumping machine, your heart can give out. In fact, 735,000 Americans have heart attacks a year.
If the heart is so strong, why does it give out? Usually because it wasn’t taken care of.
Our hearts work extremely hard for us and we tend to take its health for granted. We tend to think our hearts are invincible.
However, poor diet choices, smoking, obesity, and stress can take a toll on our hearts by creating plaque buildup and clots.
Since the heart is connected to every part of the body, it reacts to blockages severely. When blood cannot reach the heart, it ceases to be able pump and work.
Think of a time your arm got numb from lying on it too long. It went numb as a result of blood being cut off. It is similar for your heart when blood is cut off, even temporarily.
Your heart can be healed and continue pumping again, but why risk it? Take care of it with a good diet, exercise, and supplements.