I’m asking a special favor of you today. It will only take a minute. Literally.
For just one minute, I’d like you to sit back, close your eyes, and think about all of the influential women in your life, past and present, those who have loved you, taken care of you, taught you, supported you, and inspired you throughout your life. Let your mind’s eye see their images: the wisdom and compassion in their expressions, the laugh lines around their eyes, the joyful glow that lights from within. Think about the powerful effect these women had on your life and what your life might have been like without their positive influence. (Guys? You are not exempt. Get to it!)
One minute. Sixty little seconds. Go on, I’ll wait…
…If you’re like me, that minute of reflection overflowed with influential women: mothers and grandmothers, sisters, daughters, beloved aunts, teachers, doctors, friends, co-workers, mentors, and maybe even women we don’t know, like athletes and actresses, writers and musicians. Bloggers even! (And yes, I do mean YOU!) We are all richly blessed by the positive influence of women.
The reason I asked you to join me in this one-minute exercise was not only to honor these amazing women, but to also point out something you may not know: In that single minute of reflection, a woman in the U.S. died from cardiovascular disease. A woman who, no doubt, would be counted as someone else’s life-changer.. Mother, sister, mentor, friend–she made a difference in someone’s life. And now she’s gone, one of the 450,000 women–about one every minute–who die each year from heart disease.It’s a sobering statistic, to say the least.
Go Red and Go Red For Women are trademarks of AHA. The Red Dress Design is a trademark of U.S. DHHS.
When you consider the following stats from the Go Red for Women organization, it only makes sense:
- As mentioned earlier, cardiovascular disease kills approximately 450,000 women each year, about one every minute.
- While 1 in 30 American women die of breast cancer, about 1 in 3 die from cardiovascular disease.
- More women die of cardiovascular disease than the next five causes of death combined, including all forms of cancer.
- Ninety percent of women have one or more risk factors for developing heart disease.
- Only 1 in 5 women believe that heart disease is her greatest health threat.
- Heart disease is largely preventable. In fact, 80 percent of cardiac events in women may be prevented if women make the right choices for their hearts, involving diet, exercise and abstinence from smoking.
What do you get out of it?
- Research shows that women who “Go Red” are more likely to make healthy choices.
- More than one-third have lost weight.
- Nearly 55 percent have increased their exercise.
- Six out of ten 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.
Almost anyone who’s reading here is in search of a healthier life. We’re making wiser food choices, we’re exercising, and we’re learning to take better care of ourselves every day. So why not add a little spark to that fire and take yet another minute to explore the Go Red site and check out the available information and programs?
And then share it with every woman you know. YOU can be the difference in someone else’s life!
I’d be honored if you wanted to give a shout-out to any of the influential women in your life–either here, or on your blogs. And maybe give a nudge to your readers to check out the Go Red for Women campaign for themselves.
We CAN make a difference!
Personal note: This post is dedicated to my friend, Kathleen, who died last year of complications of diabetes and heart disease, at the too-young age of 59.