Cowcorner wrote:I have some lifestyle issues that I need to address (specifically diet and stress), but most of my situation is genetic factors - my father had his first heart attack about the age I am now.
You are proof that you can't out-ride a poor diet. Stress is secondary to diet as a risk factor. With your genetics, if you don't address the diet problem well, it probably won't be your last heart problem. Plus atherosclerosis usually affects your entire cardiovascular system. The heart is just one of the first places to get an issue. The one many get before that is not being able to "raise the flag".
A general health education problem is that we are taught that exercise is so good for us that it's almost considered a cure-all. So people tend to concentrate on that. When in reality diet is the most critical component in a healthy lifestyle.
Cowcorner wrote:The alarming thing is that I had pretty much no prior warning other than (possibly) a slight breathlessness when I walked up stairs. Certainly cycling was not an issue.
I've heard/read that in half of all cases, a heart attack is the first symptom.