You love Grandma’s folksy sayings, like “cold hands, warm heart” – but did you know that there’s biological back-up to support those words of wisdom? Here are the facts from Prevention magazine:
- Let’s start with that one, “Cold hands, warm heart.” The truth is, in a chilly environment, your body redirects blood from your arms, legs, hands and feet to your torso, to insulate your vital organs, like your heart. That’s why your fingers and toes may feel cold, but your core temperature stays normal. The belief that cold hands and feet indicate poor circulation or a weak heart is false. Just put on thicker socks.
- So what about the saying, “He died of a broken heart.” Any truth to that? You bet. Heart attack victims who lack a social network are more likely to die within the next year than those with supportive family and friends. Another way to die of a broken heart – people who lose a spouse have a higher risk of dying in the next year themselves. Why? Because stress and depression can wreak havoc on your heart. Doctors actually call it “broken heart syndrome.”
- Here’s another folksy saying with some merit: “My heart was in my throat.” If you’ve ever narrowly avoided an accident – or seen the ex who ripped your heart out across a crowded room – it may have felt like your heart was pounding frantically in your throat. That’s because the aorta, which is the primary channel through which blood travels to your arms, neck and brain – is located at the top of the heart. So you can feel it’s pulsations in your upper chest and throat when your heart is beating hard and fast.