The Canadian Women’s Heart Health Alliance is calling on Canadians to wear red and join the national conversation about women’s heart health.
Wear Red Canada Day is celebrated annually on February 13 to raise awareness about women’s heart and vascular health. Events are held online and in communities across Canada to remind Canadians to be mindful, curious, and proactive in the management of their heart health and wellness.
There are so many reasons to wear red. Consider these alarming heart health facts.
Cardiovascular disease — A worldwide killer for women
Globally, heart disease affects one in three women. Despite this, women everywhere are under-studied, under-diagnosed, under-treated, and under-aware when it comes to their heart and blood vessel health.
Women experience different heart attack symptoms than men
Heart attack symptoms are not recognized in over 50 per cent of women. Most women report chest pain or discomfort, as well as feeling unusually tired and short of breath. It’s important to seek immediate medical attention if you suspect you or someone else may be having a heart attack.
Risk factors for heart disease affect women differently
Lifestyle and medical factors can contribute to a woman’s future risk of heart disease. Importantly, diabetes, high blood pressure, and smoking are more likely to cause heart disease or stroke in women than in men. For example, women with diabetes are three times more likely to have heart disease than diabetic men. There are also specific risk factors for women in pregnancy and menopause. For example, complications that can occur during pregnancy, such as preeclampsia and gestational diabetes, among others, can increase a woman’s future chance of having heart disease or stroke.
80 per cent of a woman’s risk factors are preventable
Being active, eating well, managing stress, not smoking, and having regular check-ups to assess and treat high blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol reduce a woman’s risk of heart disease.
Wear red on February 13 and share pictures on social media using the hashtag #HerHeartMatters.