American Heart Month | National Wear Red Day

AMERICAN HEART MONTH

American Heart Month, a federally designated event every February, is a great way to remind all of us to focus on our hearts and encourage us to get our families, friends, and communities involved.

The American Heart Association wants to help everyone live longer, healthier lives so they can enjoy all of life’s precious moments. Together, we can build a culture of health where making the healthy choice is the easy choice.  Why? Because Life is Why.

The first American Heart Month was in February 1964. It was proclaimed by President Lyndon B. Johnson on December 30, 1963. At that time, more than half the deaths in the U.S. were caused by cardiovascular disease.

While American Heart Month is a federally designated month in the United States, it’s important to realize that cardiovascular disease knows no borders. Cardiovascular disease, including heart disease and stroke, remains the leading global cause of death with more than 17.3 million deaths each year. That number is expected to rise to more than 23.6 million by 2030. But 80% of heart disease is preventable…

NATIONAL WEAR RED DAY 

The first Friday in February is our special day to bring awareness and support of the research and education the American Heart Association has done and continues to do.

National Wear Red Day serves as a visual reminder that our fights not over and we need to raise more awareness about the risk of cardiovascular diseases. Plus, remind ourselves to make preventable choices a habit so we can all live longer, healthier lives.

Our goal is to have people see red during the month of February and know the AHA is building healthier lives free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke.

What is Go Red For Women?

In 2004, the American Heart Association (AHA) faced a challenge. Cardiovascular disease claimed the lives of nearly 500,000 American women each year, yet women were not paying attention.

It was often dismissed it as an older man’s disease. To dispel the myths and raise awareness of heart disease & stroke as the number one killer of women, the American Heart Association created Go Red For Women, a passionate, emotional, social initiative designed to empower women to take charge of their heart health.

What’s the goal of Go Red For Women?

Go Red For Women encourages awareness of the issue of women and heart disease, and also action to save more lives.

The movement harnesses the energy, passion and power women have to band together and collectively wipe out heart disease. It challenges them to know their risk for heart disease and take action to reduce their personal risk. It also gives them the tools they need to lead a heart-healthy life.

5 numbers all women (and men) should know to take control of their heart health

  • Total Cholesterol
  • HDL (good) cholesterol
  • Blood pressure
  • Blood sugar
  • Body Max Index (BMI)

The AHA encourages women to not only know their risk factors but their family history too! You can control some risk factors such as blood pressure, smoking, cholesterol, and lack of regular physical activity. You can’t control factors such as age, gender and family history.

FACTS ABOUT CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASES

  • It kills nearly 1 in 3 women each year
  • It kills about one woman every 80 seconds and about 80% of cardiovascular diseases may be preventable
  • Heart disease is the number 1 killer of women, taking more lives than all forms of cancer combined
  • More than 1 in 3 women is living with some form of cardiovascular disease
  • About 3.6 million stroke survivors alive today are women.
  • Stroke is the No. 5 cause of death in the U.S., killing nearly 130,000 people a year (that’s roughly 1 in 20 deaths).
  • Heart disease and stroke don’t care about age, race, gender, or social economic status. Everyone has a heart and brain, everyone can participate and act!

Use #GoRedICT and show us your red! 

Like/follow American Heart Association-Kansas on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram (@AHAKansas).

Tips & Tools can be found at www.heart.org/wearredday

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