Your heart beats about once a second. Live to 80 and your heart will have beat over 2.5 billion times. That is more than the number of any other muscle in your body will contract during your lifetime, no matter how many push ups you do.
Why do athletes in particular often take their heart for granted, nutritionally speaking? The major reason is that most believe that it gets exercise while we are moving other body parts. Running for example.
That is true, and as such, we need to make sure we are getting the right nutritional support for that oh so important muscle. Here are some ideas:
1. Lycopene. This is the substance found in tomatoes. It helps the elasticity of blood vessels and recent studies on this substance indicate that taking it helps improve blood vessel function, allow more smooth flow to working muscles.
2. Arginine. Interested in adding muscle mass? Arginine increases nitric oxide production which also relaxes blood vessels. This allows greater delivery of blood and nutrients to working muscles. It also reduces blood pressure and the risk of heart disease.
3. Omega 3s. Takes these essential fatty acids decrease levels of triglycerides. They also have been shown to assist with maintaining muscle mass and assisting in fat burning.
Granted there are other substances that support heart health. These however, are the few that qualify as “must have’s.”