No.8 How long does blood take to travel through the vascular system?

YOUR AMAZING BODY

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YOUR AMAZING BODY NO. 8


How long does blood take to travel through the vascular (circulatory) system?

a. 20 seconds

b. 120 seconds (2 minutes)

c. 600 seconds (10 minutes)


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A: Blood takes just 20 seconds to circulate throughout your entire vascular system – arteries and veins! And only eight seconds for it to go the brain and back.

Your heart is SO powerful that it can squirt blood up to 9 metres (30 feet) high.

Your heart beats about 100,000 times each day or 35 million times in a year. In a 70-year lifetime, the average human heart beats more than 2.5 billion times.

Your heart – which is in the centre of your chest but angled to the left, rather than on the left – is the size of about two fists and pumps blood to almost all of your body’s 75 trillion cells.

The aorta, the largest artery in the body, is almost the diameter of a garden hose.

Your body has on average 5.6 litres of blood, which circulates through the body 3 times every minute.  Your blood travels around 12,000 miles every day. Only the corneas receive no blood supply.

According to the US National Institutes of Health, polyphenols – a class of nutrients that includes flavonoids such as green tea extract, curcumin, cocoa and grapeseed extract – help protect the huge network that is your vascular system. This is largely because these are all anti-inflammatory – and inflammation in the tissues of the cardio-vascular system is now acknowledged to be a ‘key driver’ of heart disease and indeed ageing itself.

Is your cholesterol level a good warning marker for heart trouble?  Well over 50% of people who have the first heart attack are found to have normal cholesterol. But many have raised levels of an amino acid called homocysteine – which is linked to damage to arteries and the formation of blood clots. B vitamins including folic acid and a quasi B vitamin called betaine can help lower homocysteine levels.


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