Sometimes referred to as ischemic heart disease, coronary heart disease is a cardiovascular disease that is primarily caused by a blockage or build-up of fatty substances in the arteries - this can ultimately interrupt the heart's blood and oxygen supply.

Not everyone will experience the same signs and symptoms of coronary heart disease, in fact, some may not realise they have the disease until it’s diagnosed by the doctor [1]. However, common symptoms that may be experienced include:

  • Chest pain (angina)
  • Shortness of breath
  • Feeling faint or nauseous

See also: What is Congenital Heart Disease? Symptoms and Causes

What are the signs of coronary heart disease?

According to Mayo Clinic, at first, the decreased blood flow seen in coronary heart disease may not cause any symptoms [2]. However, as the build up continues, some unfavourable signs and symptoms may occur.

Chest pain (angina)

Angina is a form of chest pain that occurs when the blood flow to the heart is interrupted. This form of chest pain is associated with a heaviness or tightness in the chest and can be triggered by physical or emotional stress [3].

Shortness of breath

Shortness of breath can be described as a tightening in the chest which makes drawing a full, deep breath quite difficult. If you’re experiencing an unexplained shortness of breath, it’s important to speak with your healthcare provider.

Feeling faint or nauseous

The feeling of being faint or nauseous are both common symptoms associated with coronary heart disease. Both symptoms should feel as if they’ve ‘come out of nowhere’, and don’t have a definite cause such as exercise or some badly prepared food.

See also: What is the Function of C-Reactive Protein (CRP)?

What are the main causes of coronary heart disease?

While the primary cause of coronary heart disease is a blockage or build-up of fatty substances in the arteries. There are some other risk factors associated with the disease, including:

  • Older age
  • A family history of heart disease
  • Smoking
  • Regularly drinking excessive amounts of alcohol
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol levels
  • Overweight
  • Lack of physical activity

See also: How do you Reduce Inflammation in the Body?

What type of food causes coronary heart disease?

Eating a healthy and balanced diet is one of the best ways to help in preventing coronary heart disease - this means filling up on your greens and keeping saturated fats to a minimum [4].

Foods high in saturated fat can increase the level of bad cholesterol (LDL), which is something to avoid when you’re working towards keeping your heart in good shape. Foods with high saturated fat levels include:

  • Red meat
  • Whole-fat dairy products
  • Ice cream
  • Cakes and biscuits
  • Coconut and palm oil
  • Ghee

See also: Anti-Inflammatory Foods: Foods to Fight Inflammation

If you require a risk assessment for cardiovascular diseases, a CRP Test may be recommended. This can be done with a trip to your doctor or from the comfort of your own home with an at-home lab test. It’s important to note that while the test is non-specific, it can indicate risk of cardiovascular problems.

LetsGetChecked’s at-home CRP Test can help in indicating risk of degenerative disorders or damage that you may not be aware of. Online results will be available within 2-5 days and our dedicated medical team will be available to help every step of the way.

You should consider taking a CRP test if:

  • You are at risk for chronic inflammatory diseases including rheumatoid arthritis, lupus or vasculitis
  • You are at risk for Crohn's disease
  • You are at risk for bowel disorders
  • You are overweight
  • You require a risk assessment for cardiovascular diseases
  • You require a risk assessment for cancers

See also: What Does High CRP Mean?


  1. NHS. Coronary Heart Disease. Online:, 2020
  2. Mayo Clinic. Coronary Heart Disease. Online:, 2020
  3. Mayo Clinic. Angina. Online:, 2020
  4. Mayo Clinic. Coronary Heart Disease. Online:, 2020