“For some people the pain or tightness in their chest is severe, while other people just feel uncomfortable, or pain similar to indigestion,” explains the British Heart Foundation (BHF).
Heart attack symptoms can also persist over days, or they can come on suddenly and unexpectedly, notes the BHF.
There is a common misconception that men and women experience different symptoms when having a heart attack.
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How to respond
If you suspect the symptoms of a heart attack, call 999 immediately and ask for an ambulance.
Do not worry if you have doubts.
As the NHS points out, paramedics would rather be called out to find an honest mistake has been made than be too late to save a person’s life.
To do this you should eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, fibre-rich whole grains, fish (preferably oily fish-at least twice per week), nuts, legumes and seeds and try eating some meals without meat, the AHA advises.
Limit sugar-sweetened beverages and red meat, and, if you choose to eat meat, select the leanest cuts available, it advises.
The other key preventative measure is to be physically active.
“Being active and doing regular exercise will lower your blood pressure by keeping your heart and blood vessels in good condition,” explains the NHS.
As the health body notes, regular exercise can also help you lose weight, which will help to lower your blood pressure – a heart attack precursor.