What is it?
The heart is a muscular organ, which weighs between 250 and 300g, and has four chambers: two atria and two ventricles. The blood circulation inside it is unidirectional and is done by valves, and its contraction takes place in the order of 100,000 times a day.
What’s the heart for?
Its main function is to pump enough blood to the whole body, which can fulfill the proper volume for the full functioning of all metabolic functions. Any interruption in blood pumping can compromise functioning in the body, as even small stops can cause irreversible damage to the nervous system.
How does the heart work?
The heart has its own automaticity. This means that it is able to beat alone, even when isolated from the central nervous system when in full operation. The heart may have some function changes, which may compromise the full life of the individual, such as arrhythmias, heart failure, atrial and ventricular fibrillation, among others. There are also episodes related to the entire cardiovascular system that are major causes of death today, such as acute myocardial infarction and stroke.
When do you need to supplement?
A diet known as “good for the heart” is the Mediterranean diet, composed by fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, nuts, seafood, lean birds and unsaturated fat from extra virgin olive oil. This diet already has several evidences that prove its benefits in the prevention and treatment of cardiovascular diseases, and also recommends the low intake of added sugars, saturated fat and salt.
An interesting supplementation to perform is omega 3 in case of severe hypertriglyceridemia (above 500mg/dL), which has already shown benefits in reducing GAD, reducing the cardiovascular risk of the patient.
Article: Zampelas A, Magriplis E. Dietary patterns and risk of cardiovascular diseases: a review of the evidence. Proc Nutr Soc. 2020 Feb;79(1):68-75. Doi: 10.1017/S0029665119000946. Epub 2019 Jun 28. PMID: 31250769.
Extra virgin olive oil: more than a healthy fat