Do you know the real age of your heart? Here are some hacks to find it out

Is it possible to find out the age of your heart without any medical intervention? This World Heart Day, we will help you with that.
heart health
Developing healthy habits can ensure your heart stays healthy too! Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Nikita Bhardwaj Updated: 30 Oct 2023, 13:55 pm IST
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Each one of us has proof to determine our age, but is there any way to find out the REAL age of our heart? Well, the answer is YES. But what’s the need? Well, after the sudden demise of actor Sidharth Shukla due to a heart attack, it has been established that there could be a difference between our heart’s age and your age. That’s why on this World Heart Day, we want all of you to pay attention to your heart health. 

Did you know? There are various factors that can help you determine the age of your heart. Yes, the age of a person’s heart is dependent on things like their blood pressure, smoking, as well as weight. 

“You will be shocked to know that your heart may be older than you actually think, and this can also tell you about the possibility of any heart disease. Thus, it is imperative to adopt a healthy lifestyle for the sake of your heart,” advises Dr Bipeenchandra Bhamre, cardio-thoracic Surgeon, Sir H N Reliance Foundation Hospital and Research Centre, Mumbai.

real age of your heart
Your heart needs your love and care too. Image courtesy: Shutterstock
Here’s how you can calculate the age of your heart

Calculating your heart’s age will help you understand various risk factors that are a cause of strokes or heart attacks. Some of the common risk factors for heart disease include your age, BMI, blood pressure and cholesterol levels, diet, physical activity, and smoking. A younger heart age can indicate that your risk of heart disease is low. If the age of your heart is higher, you will have to embrace healthy lifestyle changes.

Here’s how your body reacts to the following activities. This will help determine the age of your heart

1. Do you feel chest pain after walking for a while?

If yes, it’s a concern. Chest pain on exertion indicates that there is a problem with your heart and your heart muscles are ageing. “Heaviness in the chest, left shoulder pain or sometimes, back pain are all indicators. If these symptoms show up after walking, you should meet your cardiologist and investigate for heart issues”, suggests Dr Bhamre.

2. If you can climb stairs without getting breathless, your heart is still young

It is common to breathe heavily, when you climb stairs or exercise, right? This happens due to an accelerated heart rate. But if you are in your prime and still pant after a few minutes of exercise or when you climb a staircase, you are in serious trouble, as that’s a sign of your heart getting old.

real age of your heart
Your heart might not be ready for a challenge at the gym just yet. Image courtesy: Shutterstock

“If you often find it difficult to climb or exercise, and feel restless, fatigued or have breathing problems, it indicates a problem with your heart,” suggests Dr Bhamre.

3. Feeling nauseous all the time means that your heart is ageing

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If you feel nauseous, have digestion issues, heartburn, and stomach pain all the time – it’s a sign that your heart is ageing. It really doesn’t matter what your actual age is.

4. Skipping a heartbeat suggests that your heart is an oldie

“This happens when you are excited, right? But, in those with heart problems, atrial fibrillation is a common occurrence. This means the heart is ageing. This will need immediate attention of a doctor,” suggests Dr Bhamre.

5. Sweaty palms are a sign of an old heart

Do you tend to sweat when the weather is cold outside? It can be a matter of concern and a sign that your heart is in danger. This is a sign that something is not right with your heart.

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Here are a few tips to slow down the ageing of your heart
  • Exercise daily: It is essential to be physically active and lead a healthy lifestyle. Exercise for at least five days per week for half an hour. You can do activities such as aerobics, swimming, cycling, strength training, Pilates, yoga, or walking. Also, do not forget to maintain an optimum weight. 
  • Stick to a healthy diet:  You must include all the essential nutrients in the diet. Eat fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, pulses, nuts, seeds, and beans. Eat lots of berries, apples, flax seeds, pumpkin seeds, avocado, spinach, broccoli, carrots, tomatoes and citrus fruits. Limit the intake of saturated fats. Say NO to sugary foods and sweetened beverages. Drink enough water, and avoid eating fast food on a regular basis.
  • Stay stress-free: Stress can take a toll on your heart. It can also lead to high blood pressure and cholesterol levels that can further invite heart disease. So, calm down by doing meditation, breathing exercises, and activities you like.
  • Avoid or quit smoking: If you smoke, it is the right time to quit it. Smoking raises the risk of blood pressure and problems like heart attack and stroke. Also, avoid alcohol consumption.
  • Take enough rest: You need to sleep properly. Insufficient sleep can elevate blood pressure levels and make it tough for you to shed those excess kilos. A minimum eight hours of sleep is good for your heart.
  • Keep a check on other risk factors : if you have high blood pressure or diabetes or high cholesterol, you must take your medication on time. Also, go for regular checkups to avoid the long-term effects of the above disease on your cardiovascular system.

So peeps, is your heart young or not?

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About the Author

Six-pack abs are all that Nikita needs, along with her daily dose of green tea. At Health Shots, she produces videos, podcasts, stories, and other kick-ass content. ...Read More

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