Considering that it is the wellspring of life for all living creatures, it’s no wonder that the heart has entered our lexicon and lives with such frequency.
We have a wealth of expressions like heart of the matter, heartbroken, heart sick, heartless, and of course, the symbol of Valentines which ties it to the emotion of love.
As we all know, the heart is not the center of our emotions. The brain claims that honor, but still, deep in our hearts, we tend to think of love and other feelings originating in our chests. The heart as our most important organ, is also one of the least understood when it comes to what the features and functions actually are.
For example, did you know that the aorta, the main artery into your heart, is actually the size of a garden hose? Given that an adult heart averages a mass equal to between one and two clenched fists that seems pretty big. But only if you don’t realize the capacity and force that the heart deals with every day that it beats.
The propulsion of the heart contracting and pumping, circulates your body’s six quarts of blood through the body three times every minute. Given all the veins and arteries it goes through, that means the blood travels about 12,000 miles a day, the length of four trips across America. Over an average lifespan, it would “process” approximately 1 million barrels of the life sustaining substance, which is enough to fill three oil tanker ships.