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Heart Health: Work as Hard for Your Heart as It Works for You

July 14, 2014

Did you know your heart is a muscle just like the biceps in your arm or the quadriceps in your legs? It’s considered to be the hardest working muscle in your body; beating more than 3.5 billion times during an average lifespan. And like any hard-working muscle, your heart needs a healthy diet, regular exercise, and a good night’s sleep to stay healthy. But what actually happens to this vital muscle over time when you have diseases like diabetes, high blood pressure, or high cholesterol? UT Health’s cardiologist, Dr. Dudley Goulden, answers questions about maintaining a healthy heart muscle in this post to HealthConnection.

Questions:

  1. Why do we call the heart a muscle?
  2. What happens to the heart muscle during a heart attack?
  3. How does congestive heart failure affect the heart muscle?
  4. What does the term “weak heart” mean?
  5. What do high blood pressure and high cholesterol do to the heart?
  6. How does cigarette smoking and other nicotine exposure affect the heart muscle?
  7. How does aerobic exercise change the heart muscle?
  8. What do you recommend for the average person with respect to aerobic exercise?
  9. What changes will a healthy diet make to improve the heart muscle?
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