This quiz will guide you through a series of questions to help assess your heart and stroke knowledge.
Most animals as well as humans have a heart to circulate blood and nutrients around their bodies. Which of these has the biggest heart?
A blue whale’s heart is approximately 180kgs, an elephant’s is around 13 kilos while a human heart weighs around a quarter of a kilo.
One of the ‘fastest’ hearts belongs to cheetahs. Their resting heart rate of 120 beats/min (like a jogging human) can jump to double that in just a few seconds.
Our hearts crank it out every minute of every day for as long as we live. How many times roughly do you think our hearts beat in a single day?
The average heartbeat is 70 times a minute. An athlete in training can reduce their base heartbeat to 40-60 beats per minute while raising it to up to three times that during hard out exercise. Every doctor and trainer will tell you that exercise is the major factor in keeping this muscle in the best shape it can and needs to be.
The heart is an incredibly efficient pump. Over your lifetime how many barrels of blood (as in barrels of oil) do you think our heart can pump?
That’s right, our hearts will pump on average a million barrels of oil over our lifetime, through something like 100,000 kilometers(!) of blood vessels within our bodies. Our hearts have their own electrical impulse that means it can continue to beat even when separated from the body providing it has its own supply of oxygen.
The mighty heart (if we look after it) takes less than a minute to circulate blood through your body.
What foods or eating practices are considered good for the heart or can help to reduce your risk of heart disease?
Studies show eating dark chocolate can reduce the risk of heart disease, and that vegetarians are 32% less likely to be admitted to hospital or die from a heart disease.
And a study revealed coffee drinkers are less likely to be hospitalised or worried about heart rhythm disturbances which can cause your heart to speed up or contract and pump in an erratic way.
Diet is a huge factor in keeping your heart functioning as well as it can.
Men and women have been found to have different heart rates. Who’s hearts beat faster?
The average man’s heart beats at around 70 beats per minute, while the average woman’s heart beats at 78. The reason for the difference is that women’s hearts are generally slightly smaller and so need to beat faster to supply all parts of the body.
Men who are diagnosed with heart disease are typically 10 years younger than women, coronary artery disease strikes men almost two decades earlier than it does women and sudden cardiac death (death within an hour of the onset of symptoms) is more common in males. The odds are not with men guys.
What is your blood pressure and why is it important?
Arteries carry blood away from the heart, and blood pressure is a measure of how hard the blood is pushing against the walls of the arteries. If it is too high (hypertension) we have problems, and there are also problems if it is too low.
Blood pressure is measured with two numbers, one being the pressure when the heart pumps (systolic pressure) and the other when the heart relaxes between beats (diastolic pressure). Normal blood pressure is 120/75 (NZ Heart Fdn). It is the trend with your blood pressure (up, normal, down) that doctors use to determine your risk. You can alter blood pressure with diet, exercise, not smoking and reducing stress.
A heart attack is most commonly caused by?
The coronary arteries supply all the blood to the heart muscle. A blockage in the coronary arteries reduces the supply of blood to heart muscle and if severe enough, stops the supply altogether. Bang – heart attack incoming!
Blockages are caused by build ups of what is called plaque, mainly fats, cholesterol, and calcium which can collect in your arteries as we age. Pieces of plaque can also break off, causing a blood clot.
This condition can be prevented, and many successful treatment options exist.
Cholesterol is made in our livers and is vital for building cells and making some hormones including testosterone. Which of these is true?
Cholesterol is transported in blood by lipoproteins. Low density lipoproteins (LDLs) take cholesterol to where it’s needed and dumps the rest in the walls of your blood vessels. Meet bad cholesterol.
High density lipoproteins (HDLs) collect cholesterol from blood vessel walls and deliver to the liver for removal. Hello good cholesterol.
We need a balance of both, and diet and exercise are the best ways to manage this balance. Good or bad levels can only be found by a blood test. Men should know their cholesterol levels as it is vital to heart health.
What is the difference between a heart attack and a stroke?
A stroke is a brain attack, and can be fatal. They happen when the blood flow to part of your brain is interrupted. Unless the problem is attended to urgently, cells in the affected part of the brain start to die and that part of the brain cannot work properly. This can affect a person’s ability to walk, talk, eat, see, read, socialise or do things they were able to do before the stroke.
9000 Kiwis each year have strokes. Lowering your cholesterol and blood pressure and not smoking can really reduce your chances of getting one.
What signs can tell you that someone is possibly having a stroke?
It’s vital to recognise when someone is having a stroke and to start treatment as soon as possible, because the sooner medical treatment begins, the more likely brain damage can be reduced. The quicker a blood clot can be dissolved or removed, the less damage is done.
Think FAST. F – face drooping? A – arm weakness? S – Speech difficulty? T – take action – call 111, act fast. The window is not that big.
Your score is
The average score is 72%