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Going for health check-ups can be a nuisance and an expense. For some, living in perfect bliss is preferable to finding out the source of aches and pains. And when we say “some,” we’re especially looking at the wonderful men in our lives who’d usually prefer to unblock drains than to visit a doctor. This reluctance is actually backed up by research that shows 60% of men avoid going for a check-up, even if they’re worried about a potentially serious illness.
Since we cherish the men in our lives and want to keep them fighting fit, there is a quick exercise they can do on their own to see if they’re at risk of a cardiovascular disease.The Independent published findings from a team at Harvard University that produced a study showing the use of push-ups as a means of measuring a healthy heart. In fact, the ability to carry out a number of push-ups is a great indicator of any potential cardiovascular disease or stroke in the years to come.
Ideally, for men to have a 97% reduction in risk of cardiovascular disease within the following 10 years, they need to be able to perform 40 push-ups. Whereas if a man could do 21-30 push-ups, it indicates his risk of having heart disease is just a quarter less than those who could only perform up to 10.
This simple test proved surprisingly more accurate than previous forms of tests, such as measuring the breathing rates of those using the treadmill.
The study used a sample of 1,000 firefighters of varying ages and weights across America. While the men already had a fitness level superior to that of other members of the population, the study demonstrates that push-ups are an effective way of measuring this fitness.
Although the study is limited in that it didn’t include women or those who are less active, it’s a reminder to improve our fitness levels. So don’t panic if the men you love can’t hit the floor and pull off 40 push-ups; it’s something they can try to build up to. The important thing is to nurture both a loving and a physically healthy heart.
As Professor Jeremy Pearson from the British Heart Foundation points out: “The narrowing of our arteries with fatty substances, which can eventually lead to heart attacks and strokes, starts early, often in our 20s and 30s. Keeping fit, no matter your age, is an important way to reduce your risk.”