We Know More About Old Hearts
By Gretchen Heuring | 02.06.2011
Only a few years ago, the medical community believed that the aging heart became smaller and less able after age 65. This was thought to be a natural part of the aging process. Now we know this is not true for a healthy heart.
Researchers have learned that regular exercise and a healthy diet can keep the heart strong for many more years than we ever believed possible.
Certainly the heart ages along with the rest of our bodies but it is capable of adapting itself to age-related changes if we take care.
Here's the test. If you can move and carry your body well, you have little excess fat, your muscles work smoothly and your balance is good, then your heart is most likely healthy and strong. If you don't pass this test, you know what to do.
People with healthy bodies still can get heart disease, though. Researchers are only beginning to understand why. Chances are higher if there is a history of heart disease in the family.
Symptoms of Heart Disease
Some people have heart disease with no symptoms, but chest pain, shortness of breath and fatigue are the most common. It's possible to have just one or two of these major symptoms, or none at all. So as we age, regular checkup are important for continued healthy living.
Heart disease can sneak up on us. Two of the biggest precursors are hypertension and arteriosclerosis. Both of these can be prevented and overcome by a healthy diet and plenty of huff and puff exercise.