In this video we talk about the cardiovascular system. We discuss the benefits of a healthy cardiovascular system and how you can build it by improving your cardiovascular endurance.
The term cardio most often is associated with performing exercises, which help you in losing weight. However there is a much more important benefit of cardio that most of us never appreciate. It improves our entire cardiovascular system.
When talking about cardiovascular system, we think about our heart. In reality it is a little more than that. Cardiovascular system also called the circulatory system actually includes all the organs involved in circling blood through our body. So in addition to the heart, it also includes the lungs, kidneys and our arteries and veins.
Having a healthy cardiovascular system means more than just a healthy heart. It actually means that our whole blood transportation system in healthy, and delivers nutrients to our entire body efficiently!
This clearly shows why a healthy cardiovascular system is critical for our overall health. You can have the strongest muscles in the entire universe, however if your muscles do not get their nutrients then they are useless.
To improve your cardiovascular system, you must eat well and exercise.
Eating for a healthy cardiovascular system
Your diet has a huge effect on the health of your cardiovascular system. Eating a lot of processed foods, high in sugar and trans-fat will lead to the build up of plaque in your blood vessels. This will slow the system down, reducing the capacity of your cardiovascular system to pump nutrients in and waste out. Also your heart has to work really-really hard to pump blood through your constricted arteries, putting undue stress on the heart.
A healthy diet should include nutrient rich food from all the different food groups. Best foods to include in your diet include
• Variety for fruits and vegetables.
• Whole grains
• Low–fat Dairy products
• Poultry, fish or lean cuts of red meat
• Nuts and Legumes
• Omega-3 Fats
Exercise for a healthy cardiovascular system
Just like any other fitness parameter, exercises for cardiovascular health must challenge the cardiovascular system. So any exercise, which increases your heart rate and makes you breath faster will improve your cardiovascular health.
If you are not active at all, just taking a brisk walk will challenge your cardiovascular system. However after just a few sessions you will notice significant improvements. Things such as climbing stairs will be easier, and leave you less breathless than before. This is a good way of gauging how your cardiovascular health is.
After you are comfortable with walking, start performing moderate intensity cardiovascular exercises such as cycling, running, swimming or other cardiovascular exercises in each day. The US Surgeon general recommends engaging in at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity activity per week.
As you get healthier, you can really improve your cardiovascular system by improving your aerobic capacity. Aerobic capacity is the amount of oxygen our body is able to absorb per minute to perform its function.
The rate of oxygen consumption in a highly trained athlete is high, while it is very low in untrained individuals. This allows elite athletes to function at their top performance for long periods of time.
High intensity interval training is a very effect ive way of improving aerobic capacity. High intensity interval training is performed in short bursts of maximum effort, followed by short rests, and repeated several times.
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