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Aaron Vinik Part 3, Preferred Resting Heart Rate

In part 3 of this Exclusive Interview, Aaron Vinik talks with Diabetes in Control Publisher Steve Freed during the AACE 2018 convention in Boston, MA about the importance of knowing the resting heart rate and how it impacts the rest of the body.

Aaron Vinik MD, PhD, FCP, MACP, FACE is the Director of Research at Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk, VA.


Transcript of this video segment:

Freed: Changing the subject a little bit, you’ve talked about the resting heart rate and what we can determine and how important it is and yet it is such a simple number to get to. What does the resting heart rate show us? How important is that information?

Vinik: You know what is going to happen to all of us soon? (pulls out Smartphone) This is going to be a very important new index of metabolic control. Because what I’ve told you is, not only is it affecting the clock here (brain), this clock is determining what is happening in your liver, in your adipose tissue and what happens in your pancreas and your pancreatic beta cells and glucagon. All of that in one number! So, you’d like to say, is this going to be a risk calculator? Yes, it is and a very simple one. So, if you’ve got a heart rate that’s over 78 beats per minute, you’re in trouble. You want your heart rate to be 58 beats per minute, if you can get there. If you’ve got a good heart rate like 58 and then something happens to you and you slow down and you don’t stop your exercising, and your heart rate goes from 58 to 78, now your mortality increases dramatically by one number – that’s going to be an easy world.

Freed: How important is the time it takes to go from exercising strenuously to get to a resting heart rate, the time it takes whether it takes 30 seconds or a minute, how important is that?

Vinik: I don’t think that they’ve based it quite like that. They’ve indirectly measured it. There is a really good paper that came from Israel. They put people on a treadmill. They looked [at], not so much how [much]  time to get to that level, but whether you could get to the number. I got on one of those to see what it meant, and you have to work damn hard to get your heart rate above that 78 number. But you have to get above that number, so that is number one; to get your maximum heart rate above 78. Second thing is, most people think about your cardiac maximum by 220 minus your age and to be healthy you have to have a value above 75 percent. So, what does that work out to be? I am not going to tell you how old I am, but what does that work out to be in a person like me? I’ve got to get my heart rate above 120 otherwise I am failing that test. And then there is a third measure which is a simple measure: how long, not to get there but how long it takes you to get down. So, when you’ve got up to that 75 percent of max., you want to be back to normal in about 18 seconds.

Freed: And that’s pretty tough to do.

Vinik: Yes, it’s tough to do. I have new numbers in my head. I think that I am an endocrinologist and I have these cardiac numbers in my head now and I’ll carry one of these. (Smartphone)

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