Heart rate refers to the number of heart beats per minute, a person has. This is commonly called a Pulse, in easy English. The lower the resting heart rate, the better is the overall health.
This is an indication of good health.
There are numerous ways to lower the heart rate and many compelling reasons to do so.
For the adults, a resting heart rate should range somewhere between 60 and 100 beats per minute, albeit what is considered normal most of the time varies from one person to another and throughout the day.
Before we jump to the ‘what’ and ‘how’ to maintain a lower heart rate, let’s try and understand the causes of unhealthy heart rate. So goes the saying, Prevention is better than cure.
Causes of an unhealthy heart rate
Stress, stress, and stress; Anxiety, anxiety, anxiety; Tension, tension, and tension. Though there are 3 different words for 3 times each, the after-effects are all the same. They lead to the same thing ‘damage’ in the human body.
These foreign things cause a faster heartbeat which is a cue that we are approaching towards an unhealthy lifestyle and life habits. It alerts us that the sooner we change the way we are treating our health, the lesser will be the consequences. And we human beings do not respond to it, we are not thankful to our body for helping us sail through daily and we look down upon it until it rings the red alert seriously.
We are used to taking our health for granted, aren’t we?
Enough said, let’s get into some science to understand the heartbeat and its function better.
Each heartbeat becomes apparent from distinctive muscle cell called Myocytes. When these cells are in need of more oxygen – perhaps during exercise, the brain sends a message to the heart, calling myocytes to make stronger and frequent pulses.
People of all age experience unforeseen, interim changes in their heart rate. They can be a resultant of:
- Emotional stress: Being anxious and troubled for long can generate a stress response, ergo raising the heart rate.
- Change in Weather: Humidity, high/low temperature can be a signal to your body to adjust it accordingly so as to not fall prey to faster heart rate. Thus your body will experience an unforeseen change in behavior and it must work harder to survive.
- Swiftly altering the body’s position: This can be as simple as walking/standing up too quickly.
- Exercise: Though the physical activity, the heart pumps at a faster rate, to supply blood and oxygen to the muscle cells. The increase in heart rate is directly proportional to how strenuous the exercise is.
- Prescription drugs: A few prescription drugs can interim raise the heart rate.
- Fear: Fear is an extreme form of stress, galvanizes an adrenaline response that multiplies the heart rate.
- Hormonal changes: Variations in the hormone levels, like those that occur during pregnancy/menopause etc. will interim affect the heart rate.
- Alcohol/Tobacco: Goes without saying, right?
How to lower the heart rate?
Regularly practicing meditation or yoga may seem to cause a significant change and lower the heart rate.
If the heartbeat is suddenly shooting in response to stress or environmental factors, addressing the cause is mandatory. Those include:
- Taking deep breaths
- Relaxing and holding the senses to remain stable
- Going for a walk
- Taking a warm shower or bath
- Stretching and relaxation exercises
Many lifestyle habits that you start today can contribute to maintaining a steady heart rate throughout. This will also train you to remain cool and calm in every situation that life tangles you in.
I’m certain you know all of these, nevertheless, I’m just ticking your memory by highlighting.
- Stay hydrated
- Exercise and exercise ‘daily’
- Practice relaxation techniques: a quick meditation
- Practice laughing daily
- Curb intakes of stimulants, like caffeine and nicotine
- Devour a healthy, balanced diet – nothing less, nothing more
- A few of the heart-healthy nutrients consist of:
- omega-3 fatty acids, rich in nuts, legumes, grains, fish, and lean meats
- phenols and tannins, found in coffee, tea, and red wine (in limited quantity)
- vitamin A, available in rich quantities in leafy, green vegetables
- dietary fiber, found in nuts, legumes, whole grains, and most of the fruits and vegetables
- vitamin C found particularly in bean sprouts, citrus fruits, and leafy greens
- Get enough sleep – 7 to 9 hours of sleep in recommended for adults, subject to change based on individual body conditions
- Preserve a healthy body weight – shred that extra pounds that you have restored
- Lessen sources of substantial long-term stress
- Curtail alcohol intake
- Ask for counseling or psychological services
- Get outdoors and your shoes dirty