How Healthy Is Your Heart? - Olathe Chiropractic

How Healthy Is Your Heart?

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A view of five different people side-by-side with different colored backgrounds that are all doing a heart sign over their heart.

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) affects 81 million American adults. It is the highest cause of death in the United States for both men and women. An estimated 920,000 Americans will have a heart attack this year due to CVD, and many of those will be under age 65. How healthy is your heart? You can find out with vascular testing!


What Is Cardiovascular Disease?

Cardiovascular disease is the same as heart disease. These terms describe any condition that affects the heart. Your specific type of heart disease could deal with blood clots or bleeding issues, while another’s may be diseased vessels, valve issues or structural problems. Heart disease is different for everyone. High blood pressure is even considered heart disease, as well as stroke, arrhythmia, congestive heart failure, cardiac arrest and many other heart issues.


As a whole, cardiovascular disease affects millions of Americans. At least 610,000 people in the United States die each year from heart disease. That accounts for 1 in 4 deaths in the U.S. Lifestyle plays a major role in your risk for developing problems with your heart. That is why you want heart-healthy habits to help your heart avoid problems.


Cardiovascular disease (CVD) is the #1 cause of death in the United states for men and women. Some of those deaths will happen from a heart attack, which affects at least 735,000 Americans each year. Many will not have any of the warning signs, or will not notice them before a heart attack happens.


The head of a stethoscope sitting next to a heart cutout on a tan background. The heart has lines from a heartbeat scan going across it.

Your Heart and Attack Symptoms

The CDC reports that 47% of people have heart attacks outside of a hospital. This suggests that patients were not aware that they were at risk for a heart attack or that they didn’t notice the signs and symptoms of a heart issue. Your heart will give you clues to know if you have abnormal symptoms. Without existing conditions, you will have to look for these symptoms that could indicate a hidden circulatory issue:

  • Pain and tightness in the chest, arms or throat
  • Inflammation in the calves, ankles and feet
  • Color changes in the extremities
  • Numbness and tingling in the hands and feet
  • Cold extremities that won’t warm up
  • Mild swelling, especially at the tips of the fingers and toes
  • Ulcers on the legs and feet that won’t heal
  • Speech difficulties or a continuous feeling of a lump in the throat


If any of these symptoms appear and will not pass within a half hour, you should seek emergency medical attention. That’s especially true if you are experiencing chest pain or discomfort, pain, numbness or discomfort in the arms, back, neck or other areas, and if you are lightheaded or short of breath. Some patients experience short episodes with one or more of these symptoms on a daily basis because of blood flow restriction. If you are not in an emergency status, it’s always a good idea to have your vascular testing done to see if your heart is at risk.


Vascular Testing

Although most of your major arteries are located deep within the body, modern imaging tools allow us to spot blood vessel diseases and other issues. Max Pulse is an FDA, Class II medical device that takes only 3 minutes to determine your level of CVD (cardiovascular disease) risk. Through the use of a simple, non-invasive, painless finger probe, the Max Pulse measures pulse waveform and heart rate to determine cardiovascular and autonomic nervous system factors.


Those factors include tests such as:

  • Differential Pulse Wave Index (DPI) – Tests overall cardiovascular health.
  • Eccentric Constriction (EC) – Determines constriction power of vessels from the left ventricle.
  • Arterial Elasticity (AE) – Arterial stiffness, or the overall elasticity of the large, small and peripheral arteries.
  • Remaining Blood Volume (RBV) – Remaining blood in the vessels after systolic contraction of the heart.
  • Wave Type – Aging vascular health indicator.
  • Mean Heart Rate – Average beats per minute (your heart rate).
  • Arteriosclerosis Progress – 7 pictorial wave types showing typical artery status.
  • Stress Score – Overall stress health compared to resistance levels.
  • Stress Levels – Mental stress, physical stress, and resistance to stress. Changes in pressure, velocity, blood volume, and other indices.
  • Heart Rate Variability – Determines overall heart attack risk. Reduced cardiovascular autonomic function is measured by this variability. A high variability is strongly associated with an increased risk of silent myocardial ischemia (lack of oxygen to the heart w/o symptoms or mortality probability.

Your readings on these tests will determine if your heart is at-risk for attack or serious problems.


A collection of healthy veggies, a wooden heart holding more veggies, a jump rope for exercise and exercise weights.

Tips to Be Heart-Healthy

Your everyday activities may be putting your heart at risk for a heart attack or other conditions relating to heart disease. You’re more at-risk for a heart condition if you are overweight or obese, as this makes your heart have to work much harder to pump blood. Diabetes raises the risk as well, especially when uncontrolled. A nutritious diet and proper exercise can help your heart to be healthier.


Choose foods rich in proteins, vitamins and minerals. Studies show that the body also needs an ample amount of healthy carbs and fat for certain functions, as well as an ample amount of water. Aim for about half your body weight in ounces. Avoid alcohol and tobacco use, as both significantly raise the risk of a heart attack. Avoid too many added sugars, processed foods and soda. Processed foods include fried food, bakery products, margarines/butters, pre-packaged snacks, cookies, crackers and chips.


Being active will help your heart to work and your muscles to stay healthy and strong. The American Heart Association recommends at least 150 minutes of exercise each week, or 30 minutes of exercise, 5 days a week. That exercise can even be walking; anything that gets your heart pumping. If you have chronic conditions, ailments or simply want help with exercise, pain relief or you want to receive your vascular testing, call Olathe Chiropractic today at (913) 732-0087!


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