February is Healthy Heart Month and on Friday, February 5th, it is National Go Red for Women Day!
This national awareness day helps to bring attention to heart disease in women, which will claim more female lives annually than all forms of cancer combined.
- Over 90% of women have at least one risk factor for heart disease
- 43 Million women are affected by heart disease in America
- Almost two thirds of women who die from sudden coronary heart disease have had no previous symptoms
- A women is 10 times more likely to die from heart disease than breast cancer
- Only 56% of women believe heart disease is their greatest health risk
Heart disease is an equal opportunity killer but it affects more women than men and what’s important to remember is that heart disease and heart attacks can manifest themselves entirely differently in men than in women.
For white and African-American women, heart disease will be their leading killer while heart disease and cancer will claim equal lives from Latina women.
In its first ten years since the American Heart Association created Go Red for Women, a network of women dedicated to education, research, and support, has made a huge impact on the health and awareness of women in the United States:
- 34% fewer women now die from heart disease
- More than 627,000 women’s lives have been saved
- Nearly 90% of participants made healthy lifestyle changes
- 37% have lost excess weight
- More than half now exercise more
- 60% now eat healthier diets
- 43% have had their cholesterol checked
- 23% increase in awareness that heart disease is the #1 killer of women
- Smoking decreased by 15.1%
- Cholesterol levels decreased 18.1%
- Targeted efforts are reaching African American and Hispanic women
- Enrollment has grown from 395,000 to 1,751,512
- Women completing Go Red Heart Check-ups has increased from 127,227 to 1,960,704
- Annual Go Red luncheons/events has grown from 65 to 1,377
- Website hits have grown from 293K to 56.6 M
- Congress passed the Heart for Women Act in 2012, requiring the FDA to report clinical trials based on gender
- Helped increase funding from the Center for Disease Control to provide screenings for low-income women
- Helped pass a law in 2010 to keep women’s health insurance premiums from costing more than men’s
- Helping physicians recognize that women’s heart symptoms and treatment are different from men’s
- The “Get With the Guidelines” program has helped hospitals provide improved heart treatment for both genders
- Women have been under represented in clinical studies, but the FDA now requires results reported by gender
- Increased gender-based research has revealed important differences in women’s symptoms and response to medications
- It’s been discovered that women aren’t receiving the same level of treatment for heart disease as men… But this is changing!
Making your health a priority is not self-indulgence, it is self-preservation so be sure to extend the quantity and the quality of your life and help raise awareness for the number one killer of American women! #GoRedWearRed and be sure to come back for the rest of our Healthy Heart blog series where we will go into greater detail about women and heart disease, how to reduce the risks of developing heart disease, and how to start making healthier choices for a better more heart healthy lifestyle!