Heart Disease is the number one killer of women in the United States. In fact, it affects more women than men and is more deadly than all forms of cancer combined.  An estimated 43 million women nationwide are affected by heart disease.

Go Red for Women
Go Red for Women (Michael Loccisano, Getty Images)

As American Heart Month kicks off tomorrow, the American Heart Association is declaring February 1st as National Wear Red Day.

"12,000 to 17,000 women in New Jersey have died from heart disease," said Dr. Aliya Brown, a clinical cardiologist and spokesperson for the American Heart Association. "One in three women will die from heart disease compared to one in nine women who will die from breast cancer. When the American Heart Association's Go Red movement started with the help of former first lady Laura Bush, research was done and it was discovered that less than fifty percent of women thought that heart disease was something that they needed to be concerned about. Since the Go Red movement began, we have gotten that number up over fifty percent."

In fact, more than 627,000 women have been saved from heart disease and 330 fewer women are dying per day.

Heart disease presents differently in women than it does in men. "It may present with shortness of breath or palpitations, back pain or just general fatigue," said Brown. "If women are experiencing any of these symptoms and they are unexplained, it is best to go and see a doctor to get checked out."

Women who Go Red are more likely to make healthy choices:

· Nearly 90 percent have made at least one healthy behavior change.

· More than one-third have lost weight.

· More than 50 percent have increased their exercise.

· Six out of 10 have changed their diets.

· More than 40 percent have checked their cholesterol levels.

· One-third have talked with their doctors about developing heart health plans.

For more information, visit www.GoRedForWomen.org.


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