Your heart plays a key role in your body, delivering oxygen to other organs and keeping you alive. That is why it is so important for you to be heart healthy in every sense of the word blood pressure to you Cholesterol levels More. while some Heart health metrics are best for professionalsOthers can be easily tested at home.

Staying on top of your heart health can help you avoid or catch any problems early. Heart disease is the leading cause of death for most racial and ethnic groups in the US US Centers for Disease Control and PreventionAnd someone in America has a heart attack every 40 seconds.

To be clear, we recommend getting your heart checked regularly by a professional. But in the meantime, there are ways to monitor your own heart health on your own, right in your own home, with no special equipment — just a few minutes and a little math.

Here are two easy ways to measure your heart health at home without equipment. Also, learn about the most common signs and symptoms of heart problems.

Try the levels test

A man runs up the stairs outside the house

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Hey you Exhale as you climb the stairs? One year A 2020 study by the European Society of Cardiology found that you can judge the health of your heart by how long it takes you. Climb four steps.

“If it takes you more than 1½ minutes to climb four flights of stairs, you are in very good health and it is a good idea to consult a doctor,” explained study author Dr. Jesus Petero, a cardiologist at the University Hospital of A Coruña. Spain.

The study compared the results of a step test and intensive medical tests of heart health, such as the treadmill test. They found some overlap — 58% of patients who took more than 1½ minutes to complete the steps had “abnormal heart function during the treadmill test” in the study. People who took less time to climb the stairs also had higher exercise capacity, which was associated with lower mortality.

Dr. Petero conducted a 2018 study with over 12,000 participants. They walked in three flights. Those who failed to do so quickly were nearly three times more likely to die from heart disease in the next five years (3.2% versus 1.7%).

Notably, both studies only looked at people with symptoms of coronary artery disease. But when Dr. Petero measures exercise capacity, the standards test should work in the same way in the general population. And different types Action tests It has long been used by medical professionals to assess heart and lung function.

Check your heart rate

A woman checks her pulse.

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yours Heart beatThe heart rate, also known as the pulse, is a basic measure of heart health and is why your doctor or nurse will often listen to it during an examination. It’s easy to measure at home with no equipment and provides valuable information about your heart rate and overall fitness.

Your heart rate naturally fluctuates throughout the day, depending on how hard you’re exerting yourself. During high stress or vigorous physical activity, for example, your heart beats faster. When you relax or sleep, it beats more slowly.

There are two types of heart rate that can be measured at home: resting heart rate and maximum heart rate. First, we will examine what each of them means. Then we will explain how to measure.

Resting heart rate

yours “Resting Heart Rate” Your heart rate is at rest, when you are relaxed and still. Studies have shown that higher resting heart rates are Associated with low physical fitnessIt increases the risk of high blood pressure and exposure Heart failure and death.

What is “low” or “normal” varies slightly from person to person. In general, the heart rate of healthy adults ranges from 60 to 100 beats per minute, but the ranges also depend on age. Here are the target resting heart rate ranges for different age groups:

Age

Target landing heart rate

20 years

100 – 170 beats per minute (bpm)

30 years

95 – 162 bpm

40 years

90 – 153 min

50 years

85 – 145 minutes

60 years

80 – 136 bpm

70 years

75 – 128 bpm

Maximum heart rate

In addition to your resting heart rate, you can measure your heart rate during exercise. This gives you an idea of ​​how fast your heart beats when you’re working really hard and how close it is to your “max heart rate” – the highest your heart rate should ever go. To find your maximum heart rate, subtract your age from 220.

In this case, lower is not necessarily better. During moderate-intensity exercise, you should reach 64 percent to 75 percent of your maximum heart rate. CDC. And during vigorous exercise, it should be between 77 percent and 93 percent of your maximum heart rate.

Your maximum heart rate is related to your body’s aerobic capacity. Studies have shown that people with a higher aerobic capacity are less likely to suffer from heart attack and death, reports Harvard Health.

How to measure your heart rate at home

There are a few places on your body where you can feel your heartbeat. A common and easily accessible location is the radial artery or your wrist.

Simply place your index and middle finger on the opposite wrist and count the number of heartbeats you feel in 15 seconds. Multiply that number by four to get your heart rate in beats per minute. (Start the count on beat, which counts as zero.)

The best time to measure your resting heart rate is when you wake up in the morning and are still in bed.

During exercise, you should pause for a short time between the movements to measure your heart rate. You can also use a heart rate monitor fitness tracker, If you have one (the most accurate measurements come from a chest strap heart rate monitor).

Know the symptoms of heart disease

A bearded man with his hands on his heart

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Many people with cardiovascular disease are not diagnosed until it is too late. Here are the most common symptoms of heart attacks, heart attacks, strokes, and other urgent cardiovascular problems to watch for. Mayo Clinic.

  • Chest pain, tightness
  • Shortness of breath
  • Swelling in the hands, feet, ankles or feet
  • Upper back or back pain
  • Fast or irregular heart beat (or palpitations)
  • Heart rate changes
  • Weakness or dizziness
  • Numbness in the legs or arms
  • Lightheadedness or dizziness
  • Fatigue or fatigue during physical activity
  • Heartburn, nausea or vomiting
  • Fainting

The information in this article is for educational and informational purposes only and is not intended as health or medical advice. Always consult a physician or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have about health conditions or health goals.

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