Traditionally the month of February is for lovers and all things heart related, it’s also a time to focus on heart health. The first Friday in February is National Wear Red Day. On this day the nation comes together, igniting a wave of red from coast-to-coast for a common goal: the eradication of heart disease and stroke, the number one and number five killers of Americans. Share how they go red on February 7, 2020 on social media using the hashtag #KernCountyGoesRed. Dignity Health Bakersfield will join in the Go Red movement by lighting Memorial and Mercy hospitals up in red to support good heart and brain health.
In addition to wearing red, take it one step further by participating in a heart healthy activity at any point in February. This could include: a heart healthy office potluck with low-sodium dishes, an evening walk with the family or scheduling a check-up with your doctor.
Women’s Heart Health
February is also when Dignity Health Bakersfield and the American Heart Association (AHA) focuses on supporting women’s heart health. Heart disease claims the lives of one in three women, more lives than all forms of cancer combined. For 15 years, the AHA’s Go Red for Women movement has harnessed the energy, passion and power women have to band together and collectively wipe out heart disease. It challenges women to know their risk for heart disease and take action to reduce it
The culmination of the local Go Red for Women movement is the annual Kern County Go Red for Women Luncheon on Friday, March 6 at the Bakersfield Marriott at the Convention Center. Go Red for Women is nationally sponsored by CVS and locally sponsored by Dignity Health Bakersfield. More information is available at KernGoRed.heart.org.
More than a Color
While going red in February is a great first step, making positive changes to reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke should be practiced all year. Some ways you can protect your heart include:
- Schedule regular check-ups with your doctor.
- Know your numbers. Learn about your blood pressure, cholesterol, blood sugar and body mass index.
- Stop smoking or vaping.
- Stay physically active. Get at least 30 minutes of moderate exercise each day.
- Eat smart. Include fruits and vegetables in your meals and avoid dishes with lots of sodium and sugar.
Go red for your health and go red to have more time with the ones you love most. Nearly 80 percent of cardiac events can be prevented with education and healthy lifestyle changes. Together, we can fight back against heart disease and stroke and create a healthier Kern County.
Content contributed by the American Heart Association