February is National Heart Month. Go Red For Women, nationally recognized on February 7, 2014, is the American Heart Association's nationwide movement celebrating the energy, passion and power we have to band together and wipe out heart disease. McLeod Dillon employees and Cardiac Rehabilitation patients wore red on this date to bring awareness to the fact that heart disease is the No. 1 killer of women.
This day is dedicated to raising community awareness of the harsh impact of heart disease in an effort to deter its effects.
Female participants in the McLeod Dillon Cardiac Rehabilitation program remembered the shortness of breath that was experienced leading up to the discovery of a blockage in the heart, fatigue felt the months before having a heart attack, and feelings of a terrible case of heartburn.
Heart disease and stroke affects all of us. Diseases of the heart are the country's No. 1 cause of death; stroke is No. 3. Together these cardiovascular diseases kill more than 930,000 Americans each year. As a matter of fact, every 34 seconds someone dies from CVD and every 3.4 minutes someone dies from a stroke. One out of two citizens in our area dies from cardiovascular disease.
"Heart disease and stroke claim more women's lives each year than the next five leading causes of death combined," said Abby Lambert, RN, Supervisor of the McLeod Dillon Cardiac Rehabilitation Program. "In many cases, these diseases can be prevented through healthy lifestyle choices."
According to a Drexel University Study, the number of women hospitalized for heart failure increase 55 percent annually, compared to 20 percent annually for men.
Go Red For Women is a challenge set by the American Heart Association to raise awareness and stop heart disease in women. Follow these tips to reduce your risk for heart disease:
- Maintain a Healthy Body Mass Index (BMI)
- Lower Cholesterol
- Reduce High Blood Pressure
- Stop Smoking
- Get Physically Active
- Achieve Recommended Weight
- Prevent or Control Diabetes
- Lower Stress Levels
About Go Red For Women
Go Red For Women is the American Heart Association's solution to save women's lives. With one out of three women still dying from heart disease, we are committed to fighting this No. 1 killer that is preventable. GoRedForWomen.org, a premier source of information and education, connects millions of women of all ages and gives them tangible resources to turn personal choices into life-saving actions. We encourage women and the men who love them to embrace the cause. For more information please visit GoRedForWomen.org or call 1-888-MY-HEART (1-888-694-3278). The movement is nationally sponsored by Macy's and Merck & Co., Inc.
About the American Heart Association
The American Heart Association is devoted to saving people from heart disease and stroke – America's No. 1 and No. 3 killers. We team with millions of volunteers to fund innovative research, fight for stronger public health policies, and provide lifesaving tools and information to prevent and treat these diseases. The Dallas-based association is the nation's oldest and largest voluntary organization dedicated to fighting heart disease and stroke. To learn more or join us, call 1-800-AHA-USA1 or any of our offices around the country, or visit heart.org.