What Is the Main Function of the Circulatory System?
The blood circulatory system transports nutrients and oxygen throughout the body. The system is comprised of the heart and blood vessels.
One primary function of the circulatory system is completed by pulmonary circulation. During pulmonary circulation, blood rich in oxygen is pumped into the left atrium of the heart from the lungs, whereas blood low in oxygen exits the heart through the right ventricle to the lung. The blood that is low in oxygen is also high in carbon dioxide, which is expelled through the lungs.
Another function of the circulatory system is completed by systemic circulation, which takes blood rich in oxygen from the heart throughout the body, and takes blood low in oxygen back to the heart. This process involves the ventricles, arteries and capillaries.
Circulatory Systems in Living Creatures Some scientists separate the cardiovascular and lymphatic systems because both systems operate using the same biological pathways, but many scientists categorize them together as the circulatory system. All vertebrates, such as mammals, birds and reptiles, as well as annelids and cephalopods, have closed circulatory systems, in which the blood travels through vessels to organs and back to the heart. Other animals, such as mollusks, have open circulatory systems in which the blood bathes the organs directly. However, in both types of circulatory systems, the purpose is the same: to get nutrients to the cells and carry waste away from the cells.
Improving Blood Circulation There are things people can do to improve their blood circulation. The first thing to do is to quit cigarette smoking. Exercising is also a good way to increase blood circulation and heart rate, which can be as simple as walking thirty minutes a day. Also, keep blood the healthy with plenty of water and a healthy diet. Certain nutrients are terrific for improving blood flow, including L-arginine, vitamin E and omega-3 fatty acids. The best way is to eat poultry, dairy, leafy vegetables and olive oil.
Best Foods for Good Circulatory Health A healthy diet can mean lots of things, but when focusing on improving circulatory health, limit salt intake. Don't take in excessive trans fats and saturated fats, which is best done by avoiding processed foods. Processed foods include canned food, white bread and pre-made baked goods. Fast food should be avoided because it's full of bad fats and salt. Instead, cook homemade meals with vegetables and whole grains. Keep meals low-cholesterol, too, and opt for water instead of sugary sodas. Also, drinking green tea is good for the circulatory system because it has polyphenols. In addition, oily fish helps to reduce inflammation.
Circulatory System Issues When people have problems with their circulatory system, it can lead to several diseases including high blood pressure, coronary artery disease and abdominal aortic aneurysms. To avoid these issues, exercise, maintain a healthy weight and avoid alcohol. Also, it's important to maintain a low-stress lifestyle. There are also certain groups of people who should work to avoid circulatory system issues, which include older people, males and people with a history of heart-related illnesses in their families.