Did you know...
• Heart disease is the #1 killer of American women.
• One in five women have some form of cardiovascular disease.
• In 1999, cardiovascular disease (CVD) caused the deaths of 512,904 females, 53.5% of all deaths from CVD.
• One out of three women compared with one out of four men will die within one year after having a heart attack.
• A woman's chances of developing heart disease soar after she goes through menopause.
• More women than men will suffer a second heart attack within six years after their first heart attack.
• African American women are 60 percent more likely to die of coronary heart disease than white women.
• Women with diabetes are 3 to 4 times more likely than men to develop heart disease.
• Fewer than one in ten women today think that heart disease is their greatest health threat.
• Diabetes doubles the risk of a second heart attack in women.
You can take simple, daily steps to ensure your heart and blood vessels are healthy and strong. You can:
- Quit smoking. Smokers are two to six times more likely to suffer a heart attack than nonsmokers. Smoking also boosts the risk of stroke.
- Control your blood pressure. Cut down on salt and alcohol. Eat more fruits and vegetables, and low fat or nonfat dairy products that supply plenty of potassium, magnesium, fiber, and calcium.
- Control your blood cholesterol. Get it checked at least once every five years.
- Control your weight. Eat a diet rich in fruits, vegetables, and grains and low in saturated fat and cholesterol. Avoid fad diets and diet pills.
- If you have diabetes, monitor and control your blood sugar levels.
- Reduce your stress level.
- Exercise. Just 30 minutes most days of the week helps!
- Talk with your health care provider about your heart disease risks and your family's heart disease history.
- Talk with your health care provider about whether birth control pills are right for you. If you have had blood clots, a heart attack, stroke, or another kind of heart disease, birth control pills may not be the best choice.
- If you are over 50, talk with your health care provider about aspirin therapy.
- If you have ever had a "mini stroke" or if you have risk factors for stroke, tell your health care provider.
WHAT WOMEN SHOULD KNOW: THE WARNING SIGNS OF A HEART ATTACK
Every minute counts, even if the symptoms seem to disappear! Know that not everyone
gets all of these warning signs. And, sometimes these signs can go away and return.
Treatments are most effective if given within one hour of when the attack begins.
If you have these symptoms, call 911 right away!
Signs of a Heart Attack:
- Chest discomfort or uncomfortable pressure, fullness, squeezing or pain in the center of the chest that lasts longer than a few minutes, or comes and goes.
- Spreading pain to one or both arms, back, jaw, or stomach.
- Cold sweats and nausea.
For more information, click on the links below.
The National Coalition for Women with Heart Diesease is the nation's only national patient advocacy organization serving the 8,000,000 American women living with heart disease and provides them support, information and advocacy. We aim to improve their quality of life and healthcare, to include early detection, accurate diagnosis and proper treatment.
The American Heart Association is a national voluntary health agency whose mission is: "Building healthier lives, free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke."
womenshealth.gov works to improve the health and well-being of women and girls in the United States through its innovative programs, educating health professionals, and motivating behavior change in consumers through the dissemination of health information.