How Your Heart Works - What
You Should Know
The average resting heart rate for most
people is between 60-100 beats per
minute, although this number can change
according to activity levels, stress, and
even age. A healthy heart is able to pump
blood efficiently and continuously
throughout the human body
However, a person's heart
will continue to work at a
normal pace as long as they
have good circulation.
The heart is a muscular organ that is
essentially a pump for the blood
throughout the body. In order to
understand how it works, it's important
to understand how the heart gets its
energy. The working chambers within
the heart are called ventricles.
Within each ventricle, there is a
specialized type of muscle called
cardiac muscle (as opposed to
skeletal muscle). Cardiac muscle is
unique because it has an incredible
ability to regenerate energy on its
In order for the heart to function
properly, the two ventricles must
be in synchronized contraction.
Each ventricle has its own valve
that controls blood flow into and out
of the heart.
When the heart isn't working
correctly, blood will back up into
one of the ventricles before it can
exit through the valve and
consequently cause a heart
To visualize how these valves work, imagine
that both your nostrils are connected to a
tube coming out from each side of your head,
which then runs to your mouth. Now imagine
that you've filled the tube with water at one
nostril and that you're trying to suck air from
the other nostril.
It would be impossible for you to suck
water out of both your nostrils at the
same time, so there would be a
backflow from one nostril to the other.
In this case, your two sets of hands
would be "partner valves", which
control blood flow.
Your heart consists of four chambers:
two atria (a portion on each side) and
two ventricles (part on each side). The
atria are responsible for receiving
oxygenated blood from the lungs,
making sure it's properly oxygenated so
you can breathe.
It then pumps that blood into the
ventricles, which then cont