You probably know exactly how to lower your risk of heart disease (you've heard the advice so many times, it has the same effect as counting sheep). But considering the deadly odds—that cardiovascular disease will kill either you or the woman standing next to you—it's wise, if not urgent, to wake up and read on.

The best way to avoid being killed by a heart attack or stroke is to head it off long before it strikes. That means discovering—when you seem perfectly healthy—whether trouble is brewing deep down in your arteries.

If you have one or more risk factors for heart disease, you may want to ask your doctor about these three diagnostic tests.

Take these health, fitness, lifestyle and nutrition tips to heart.