Resting heart rate: What does yours say about your health? Watch out for a ‘faster’ rate

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The normal resting heart rate for an adult ranges from 60 ppm to 100 beats per minute. It can be increased by a number of acute factors, including dehydration and stress.

Generally speaking, a lower heart rate at rest implies a more efficient heart function.

It means better cardiovascular fitness, as the heart pumps more bloods at a more efficient level.

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Dr Emaka, Brand Ambassador of AI-based fitness and lifestyle coaching app Freeletics, said: “In the times we are in today, infection can also affect your resting heart rate.

“Having a viral illness such as COVID-19 will cause a heart to beat faster. This happens because the heart is pumping faster to provide the body and the immune cells enough oxygen to fight off the virus.”

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How to measure your RHR

While there are a variety of tool and apps to measure your RHR, all you really need is a timer:

-With you palm facing up, place your index and middle finger on the thumper side of your write, along the line whether the watch band would be worn. You should feel a pulse.

-Set your timer for 30 seconds, then count the number of beats you feel during that window.

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-Double the number of beats to get the number of beats per minutes, which is you RHR.

How to modify your RHR

According the Henry Ford Health System, ways to reduce your HRH include:

Smoking: Nicotine is a stimulant that not only increases the heartbeat, but also increase the risk of developing heart disease.

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Alcohol: Consuming more than four alcoholic beverage a day for women and five for men can overtax the and cause it to beat more quickly.

Change your medication: Certain over-the-counter medications and prescriptions medications are known to boost RHR. If you notice your heart rate increasing after starting a new medication, talk to your doctor about alternatives.

Although each case differs, usually, if your heart rate is unusually high or unusually low, that tends to be a physiological problem you should seek medical advice for.

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Other warning signs could be symptoms such as fainting, dizziness, shortness of breath or palpitations.

Dr Emeka stresses the importance of working our regularly. She says: “Doing a number of different workouts can improve your cardiovascular fitness and strengthen your heart muscle, so reducing your resting heart and making you feel healthier.

“When you’re exercising regularly your heart muscles becomes stronger and this increases the contractibility of the heart. This means they can pump more oxygenated blood through the body with each beat.”

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