You may be seeing a sea of red today, but do you know what it is supporting? Today is National Wear Red Day! The color red raises awareness for women’s heart disease. According to the American Heart Association heart disease and stroke cause 1 in 3 deaths among women each year.

Factors that may increase women’s risk for heart disease include:
  • Diabetes
  • Diet high in saturated fats or cholesterol
  • Excessive alcohol use
  • High blood pressure
  • High cholesterol
  • Physical inactivity
  • Obesity
  • Tobacco use

Thankfully, about 80 percent of cardiac events may be prevented. If you feel you may be at risk of heart disease, consider speaking with your health care provider. The CDC recommends the below questions to get your conversation going:

  • What is my risk for heart disease?
  • What is my blood pressure? What does it mean for me, and what do I need to do about it?
  • What are my cholesterol numbers? What do they mean, and what do I do about them?
  • What can I do to quit smoking?
  • How much physical activity do I need to help protect my heart?
  • What is a heart-healthy eating plan for me?
  • How can I tell if I’m having a heart attack?

By taking the steps necessary, you can greatly lower your risk of having a heart attack. If you suspect you are having a heart attack, you should call 9-1-1 immediately. Symptoms of heart attack include:

  • Heavy pressure on the chest
  • Sharp upper body pain in the neck, back and jaw
  • Severe shortness of breath
  • Cold sweats
  • Unusual or unexplained fatigue
  • Unfamiliar dizziness or light-headedness
  • Unexplained nausea or vomiting

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