LEXINGTON, Ky. (LEX 18) — Friday is National Wear Red Day to bring awareness to women's number one health threat in Lexington.
According to the American Heart Association, heart disease is the leading killer of women in the United States.
The American Heart Association calls on women in Lexington to spread awareness on National Wear Red Day, to bring awareness to the 1 in 3 women dying from cardiovascular disease. Furthering the concern in the Commonwealth, Kentucky ranks ninth in the country for heart disease deaths with more than 10,000 individuals dying each year.
Women and men are encouraged to wear red and give Friday. The Go Red for Women movement is nationally sponsored by CVS Health, along with Big Lots and the Big Lots Foundation.
"Red is bright. Red is bold. Red is cheery. But, red also symbolizes our heart," said CHI St. Joseph Health Cardiovascular, Stroke and Surgical Market Vice President Shelia Devine Griffeth.
She continued, "If you think about women and cardiovascular disease and if you look at where we are and where we're going towards in the future, awareness is the number one thing that we need to get out there. We need to make sure our young daughters are aware, we need to make sure our grandmothers, everyone is aware that cardiovascular disease is prominent in women and is the leading cause of death."
Some Kentucky buildings are also supporting the movement by lighting up red. Those taking part include CHI Saint Joseph Health, City Centre, LexPark Garage on Main, and the Fifth Third Bank Pavilion, as well as the Kentucky Governor’s Mansion.
The American Heart Association encourages people to take action during the month of February, by:
- Wearing red on National Wear Red Day
- Posting to social media about National Wear Red Day, and tagging @heartkentucky, and using the hashtags- #GoRedKY and #WearRedAndGive.
- Making a donation to the American Heart Association here
- Reserving a spot for the Central Kentucky Go Red for Women Experience here
- Donations can also be made at the register at CVS
Griffeth explained heart disease often goes undetected in women until it is too late.
"Cardiovascular disease is not going to present like it does with men. It is not- you're not going to have the symptoms of chest pain you could, but most likely you're going to have maybe jaw pain, you're going to have the fatigue, you're going to have the dizziness, you're going to feel faint. A female may feel indigestion. They are just going to feel rundown," she said.
Griffeth said a trip to a primary care physician on a regular basis or if women feel irregular symptoms is one way to take care of their hearts.
Additionally, she explained, "exercise, healthy diet, maintaining weight, living healthy lifestyles, being active" are all factors that can decrease the risk of cardiovascular disease.
To learn more, visit the American Heart Association's website.