The Heart: The Body’s Toughest Organ
The brain tends to get most of the limelight when we’re looking at the human body. Considered as the most complex structure in the known universe, there are a lot of reasons to love the brain. But not far behind it is the heart, the organic pump in everyone’s chest that spends its entire life making sure that our blood gets where it needs to go.
The heart is a truly fascinating organ and is by far the toughest that we have. Here are some interesting facts about the heart and why it’s so special.
Beats Per Lifetime
The heart beats around 2.5 billion times during our lifetime, although this number can vary depending on a range of factors. That averages at around 100,000 beats per day, and it works like clockwork: if the heart stops beating for even a moment, we go into cardiac arrest. We’re lucky, then, that the heart is extremely hard to break.
It’s Safe From Cancer
More than half of the cells that make up the heart are there from the time we develop in the womb, and it’s the only part of our body that does not get completely regrown over a lifetime. This means that the heart is also almost completely immune to cancer, as the cells themselves are very unlikely to turn cancerous at any point. Heart cancer does exist, it’s just extremely rare.
The Blood It Pumps
The heart is capable of pumping around 5 litres of blood every single minute, which is the same amount of total blood found in the body. Over an entire lifetime, it pumps enough blood to fill three super tanker trucks.
It Reaches Every Corner
While scientists aren’t exactly sure just how many cells are in the human body, it’s believed to be between 75 and 100 trillion cells. And the heart is able to pump blood to every single one of them over the course of just a minute. In fact, the only part of the body that does not receive blood from the heart are the corneas found in the eyes.
Nuts and Heart Health
Of all the foods that are good for the heart, nuts are perhaps some of the best. Numerous studies have found that, on average, eating a handful of nuts every day and decrease the risk of developing heart disease by up to 30%, so it’s a great snack to munch on while reading the newspaper or enjoying the best games to play. Pair this with a whole food, plant-based diet and regular exercise, and it can be quite difficult to develop any kind of heart disease considering how tough an organ it really is.
The Leading Cause of Death
Currently cardiovascular disease is the world’s leading cause of death, beating out both pneumonia and cancer. CVD-related deaths have skyrocketed in recent years, with much of the evidence suggesting that there’s a link between our failing hearts and the prevalence of processed foods that have become a standard in many parts of the western diet.