Surprising Signs of Heart Disease

Before a heart attack happens, get to know the subtle indicators

(This article previously appeared on Grandparents.com.)

Did you know that 400,000 Americans still die every year of heart disease? “We are improving but it is still a common problem,” says Dr. Gerald Fletcher, American Heart Association spokesperson and professor of medicine – Cardiovascular Diseases, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, Mayo Clinic, Jacksonville, Fla.

Part of the problem is that while most people know what to look for in a heart attack (pressure or pain in chest or arms, shortness of breath, dizziness, nausea), most people don’t know the signs of heart disease or increased risk of heart disease.

Researchers from Emory’s Rollins School of Public Health found that half of all heart disease deaths are due to preventable risk factors. The top five are high cholesterol, diabetes, hypertension, obesity and smoking. But there are other surprising signs that your ticker may not be in tiptop shape:

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