KEEP YOUR HEART AND ARTERIES YOUNGER WITH EXERCISE

KEEP YOUR HEART AND ARTERIES YOUNGER WITH EXERCISE

Ageing is inevitable – or is it? There may be no miracle anti-wrinkle creams, but new research shows that it is possible to reverse ageing on the inside. Exercise can rejuvenate your circulation.

WHAT GOES WRONG WITH AGEING ARTERIES?

Arteries are the vital blood vessels that carry oxygenated blood away from the heart and on to all the organs of the body. There are two possible problems that can arise with arteries as we age.

They can become clogged with fatty deposits from a poor diet, which reduces the space available for blood inside the arterial ‘tube’. The walls of the artery can also become less elastic, a phenomenon known as arterial stiffening.

HOW DOES THAT AFFECT THE HEART?

Stiffened and clogged arteries make it more difficult to maintain a good blood flow. That means that the heart has to work harder at each beat. A harder-working heart may enlarge some of its muscle and thus demand more blood flow and more oxygen.

However the clogged vessels mean that this demand cannot be met without yet more effort. This vicious circle can lead to heart failure, either progressive or sudden.

CAN EXERCISE HELP THE CIRCULATION?

It has been known for a while that daily vigorous exercise over years leads to more flexible arteries. A recent study found that lower levels of exercise can also do the trick. Meeting the activity guidelines could be all your need to keep the blood flowing.

While the mechanism is not yet understood, the evidence is clear that exercise can reduce and even reverse how your arteries age. What other incentive do we need?

WHAT ELSE SHOULD I DO TO HELP MY HEART?

While we can’t do anything about our genetic risks, there are plenty of common-sense steps that you can take to look after your heart.

Follow those ideas. It should give a much higher chance of being around to collect more laughter lines!

 


The Author

Jessica Ambrose

Jessica is a fitness writer who loves long distance running, yoga, strength training and healthy eating.

Comments

Claire H.
26 June 2018

Claire H.

My mum has always exercised regularly, even just something like dog walking, and she's still a very 60 year old so I am inspired by her example and intend to do the same.

Dan M.
25 June 2018

Dan M.

that's interesting after reading the other article on keeping the heart elastic too. I like to think I'm a long way from these problems but will keep up the exercise to improve the odds.

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