Central Valley Nearly 250 women were educated about their number one killer - heart disease - at the American Heart Association Tri-County Go Red For Women Luncheon on Nov. 4 at the Falkirk Estate and Country Club in Central Valley. Nationally recognized nutrition expert, TV personality and published author Keri Glassman, MS, RD, CDN, presented the keynote address on a “Nutritious Life.” Glassman is the founder and president of Keri Glassman, Nutritious Life, a nutrition practice based in New York City and is a contributing editor and advisory board member for Women’s Health Magazine. The annual Go Red For Women Luncheon is a half-day of health and wellness education, empowerment and transformation. It is part of the Go Red For Women’s national movement to fight heart disease in women - their number one health threat. The Luncheon, serving Orange, Rockland and Sullivan counties, featured morning educational breakout conversations, heart disease education, uplifting stories, health-healthy lunch and a keynote by Glassman. “There are differences in women and men’s heart disease and treatments, and the American Heart Association’s Go Red For Women initiative ensures that women-specific research is conducted,” said Rawn Salenger, MD, pesident of the AHA Tri-County Board. According to a 2009 AHA study, 46 percent of women were unaware that heart disease is the leading cause of death among women. The American Heart Association’s Go Red For Women movement was created to raise awareness of heart disease as the number one killer of women. To learn more about women and heart disease and stroke, visit www.goredforwomen.org. The Luncheon is sponsored nationally by Macy’s and Merck and locally by Cause Sponsor Bon Secours Charity Health System and media sponsors 92.1 Lite FM, Walkill Valley Times and Mid Hudson Times. Facts about women and heart disease: Heart disease is still the No. 1 killer of women, taking over 420,000 lives every year. Cardiovascular disease causes one in three deaths in women Women are dying at the rate of one per minute because they don’t know that heart disease kills. More women die of heart disease than the next four causes of death combined, including all forms of cancer. In fact, one in three American women die of cardiovascular diseases (CVD), compared to one in 30 women who die of breast cancer. 90% of women have one or more risk factors for developing heart disease. CVD is preventable One study found that if women adhere to five lifestyle choices involving diet, exercise, and non-smoking, 83 percent of coronary events may be prevented. 3 Awareness is low among women: A 2009 survey conducted by the AHA found that 46% of women were unaware that heart disease is the leading cause of death among women. Many women also do not recognize the warning signs or symptoms of heart disease, which may be subtler than those exhibited by men. Less than half know what are considered healthy levels for cardiovascular risk factors like blood pressure and cholesterol. Gender differences in CVD Researchers have learned that gender differences play an important role in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of CVD. In the past, heart disease and heart attack have been predominantly associated with men. Historically, men have been the subjects of the research done to understand heart disease and stroke, which has been the basis for treatment guidelines and programs. This led to an oversimplified, distorted view of heart disease and risk, which has worked to the detriment of women. Heart attack symptoms may be different in women than in men and women may also respond differently to cardiac medications. Although chest pain is the most common heart attack warning sign in both men and women, women may be less likely to report chest pain during a heart attack and more likely to report other symptoms, often resulting in misdiagnosis and delays in treatment. Women tend to develop CVD later in life than men, and their outcomes are often worse. However, women smokers die of a heart attack caused by smoking earlier than men. Women with acute coronary syndrome are more likely to have adverse outcomes, including death, heart attack, stroke, or re-hospitalization, even after adjusting for age differences. About Go Red For Women: Go Red For Women raises awareness of the issue of women and heart disease, and also encourages action to save more lives. Go Red For Women gives women the tools they need to lead a heart healthy life. The movement harnesses the energy, passion and power women have to band together and collectively wipe out heart disease. Visit www.goredforwomen.org to start taking charge of your heart health.