Anatomy Physiology

The human heart is only about the size of your fist. Amazingly, as small as that may seem, the heart plays a huge and vital role to the survival of life. The human heart is part of a network of organs that keep the body oxygenated and norished with important nutrients. It also plays a role in removing cellular waste matter, and carbon dioxide, from the body’s bloodstream as well as regulating blood pressure. It’s a big responsibility for such a small organ, but one that a healthy heart can more than handle. But, how does it do what it does?

The heart is an intricately composed organ. It has four chambers, two resting atop of two others. The two upper chambers are called the atriums. The bottom two are called the ventricles. Each set of chambers contracts in unison in order to do their part in the blood delivery process. As blood flows into the heart it enters the right atrium via the superior vena cava (one of the two largest veins in the body). As the right atrium contracts blood it’s forced into the right ventricle. At this point the blood is forced out of the heart and into the lungs by way of the pulmonary artery. It travels to the lungs where waste is removed and oxygen is added. The blood then returns to the heart via the pulmonary veins and flows into the left atrium. As the left atrium contracts it forces the blood into the left ventricle, and as the left ventricle contracts blood is delivered out of the heart once again and into the aorta. From here the blood is dispersed throughout the body along a complicated network of arteries. Another, just as complicated network, of veins carry the blood back to the heart where the process starts over again. An amazing feat for such a small organ.

It goes without saying that this process of pumping blood to the body is an ongoing process. As such, the heart muscle must be strong enough to keep up with the demand placed on it. A healthy heart is much more capable of efficiently supplying the body with oxygen, and vital nutrients, both of which are essential to the good health and the overall well-being of the human body. That’s why eating nutritious foods is so important.

If it were not for the heart, blood would have no other way of circulating throughout the body, and without blood the body would quickly fail and, not long after, eventually die.

So, now that you know how the human heart works, take steps to keep your’s healthy and strong by eating right, getting in some exercise, and enough sleep as well. It may be a small organ, but its got a big job to do. Do what you can to ensure yours keeps performing to the best of its ability.