Go Red For Women campaign targets heart disease

Go Red For Women campaign targets heart disease
February 05
00:00 2015
 Above: The crowd at the 2014 Go Red breakfast gathering.

The American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women movement encourages everyone to wear red tomorrow (Friday, Feb. 6) to support women’s heart health, a topic  Vera Jordan talks about wherever she goes.

The 59-year-old woman was named a Go Red For Women ambassador for Forsyth County in 2005 after surviving a heart attack.

Vera Jordan

Vera Jordan

“All of a sudden my chest started hurting, my backing was hurting a little bit and I was having a hard time breathing, and then I passed out,” said Jordan, who was rushing to get to work at the time.

Her husband, who typically would have been out of the door to work before her, was home and called 9-1-1.

“I had a heart attack and a 90 percent blockage. They put a stent in, and now I’m still here to talk about it,” she said, crediting God for the miracle.

After her heart attack and cardiac rehabilitation, Jordan was adamant about changing her lifestyle. She went on a diet and began to exercise.

“Exercise includes sweeping the floors, mopping or anything that you do that involves moving your body,” she said. “You just need to do some sort of exercise 30 minutes a day.”

She is eager to share any information she can to help others, both men and women, prevent a heart attack.

“I do it everyday. When I talk to someone I talk to them about limiting bad things,” she said.

Heart disease is the number one killer of women in the nation, affecting one out every three women, according to the AHA.

Cardiovascular diseases are the leading cause of death for African-American women, killing nearly 50,000 annually, according to the AHA. The organization said that only 43 percent of African-American women know that heart disease is their greatest health risk, compared to 60 percent of Caucasian women and 44 percent of Hispanic women.

It is believed that African-American women 20 and older have an almost 49 percent chance of cardiovascular disease, while only 50 percent are aware of the signs and symptoms of a heart attack. These signs include pressure, squeezing or pain in your chest, pain or discomfort in your arms, back, neck, jaw and stomach, shortness of breath, cold sweats, lightheadedness and nausea.

Kirsten Royster, vice president of Novant Health Heart and the Vascular Institute, said that the partnership Novant has with the Go Red Campaign allows  it to educate and empower women to live healthier lives for themselves and their families.

“The partnership with Go Red for Women is critical to educating women so that we can improve the health of women. As a leading center in the region for heart and vascular care, our team provides care to thousands of patients per year and continues to achieve quality results that put us in the top 10 percent in the nation,” she said. “While our national recognition for quality in heart and vascular care is impressive, our more important mission as a community wellness partner is to help prevent heart disease. We will continue to invest not only in the most advanced technology and procedures to treat heart disease, but also in programs designed to prevent it.”

Others around Winston-Salem are taking the campaign to heart.  The Winston-Salem Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc. will sponsor Go Red for Women on Friday, Feb. 6, at St. Paul United Methodist Church.

Go Red for Women is locally sponsored by NewBridge Bank, Novant Health and Crumley and Roberts. Macy’s is the national sponsor.

People are encouraged to take photos of themselves and post it on with the #TriadGoRed.

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Chanel Davis

Chanel Davis

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