It’s Valentine’s Day and men all over the world will try to woo and shower their wives and girlfriends with gifts, flowers and chocolates. They will try to make their hearts melt.
But listen men…
If you really care about the heart of the woman in your life you will make sure that she takes care of it.
According to the American Heart Association and Womenheart.org, heart disease is the leading cause of death of American women, killing more than a third of them. 35.3% of deaths in American women over the age of 20 are caused by cardiovascular disease each year. More than 200,000 women die each year from heart attacks- five times as many women as breast cancer.
Almost two years ago today my mother died from a sudden attack heart attack and our family was devastated. She complained of heart burn for a week before her death and waited before she made a doctor’s appointment.
Sometimes I wish that I could have done more to convince her to stop smoking. She didn’t know that cigarette smoking results in a 2-3 times increased risk of dying from heart disease.
Ignorance is a factor when it comes to the number of deaths from heart disease for women. Many women can significantly reduce their risk of heart disease if they have the information they need, know the questions to ask their health providers and receive the support to make heart-smart changes in their lives.
Here are some more facts from WomenHeart.org
Who is at-risk?
· Cigarette smoking results in a 2-3 times increased risk of dying from heart disease.
· 48% of adult women have a total cholesterol of at least 200mg/dL.
· 50% of Caucasian women, 64% of African-American women, 60% of Hispanic women, and 53% of Asian/Pacific Islander women are sedentary and get no leisure time physical activity.
· 58% of Caucasian women, 80% of African-American women, and 74% Hispanic-American women are overweight or obese.
· Women with diabetes are 2.5 times more likely to have heart attacks
Affects more women than men
· More women than men die of heart disease each year.
· 23% of women and 18% of men will die within one year of a first recognized heart attack; 22-32% of women and 15-27% of men heart attack survivors will die within five years.
· 12-25% of women and 7-22% of men heart attack survivors will be diagnosed with heart failure within five years.
· Women are less likely than men to receive appropriate treatment after a heart attack.
· Women comprise only 27% of participants in all heart-related research studies.
Remember, taking care of your heart is important and visiting your doctor on a regular basis is a good way to lower your chance of dying from Heart Disease.