Heart attacks happen when an artery supplying your heart with blood and oxygen becomes blocked. The primary cause of a blockage is cholesterol; a fatty deposit found in your blood. The cardiovascular event requires swift medical attention to stave off the risk of permanent damage to the heart muscle.
According to the BHF, the duration of symptoms can vary from person to person too.
“Heart attack symptoms can persist over days, or they can come on suddenly and unexpectedly,” it says.
How to respond
“If you suspect the symptoms of a heart attack, call 999 immediately and ask for an ambulance,” advises the NHS.
According to the health body, it’s important that you rest while you wait for an ambulance, to avoid unnecessary strain on your heart.
According to the American Heart Association (AHA), you should choose foods low in saturated fat, trans fat, and sodium.
“As part of a healthy diet, 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,” advises the AHA.
It also says to select lower fat dairy products and poultry (skinless).
Many of these items can be found in a Mediterranean-style diet – this means eating more bread, fruit, vegetables and fish, and less meat.