(Jan. 30, 2009)
Women's heart health will be the focus a series of educational events in early February at East Carolina University.
The university's "Wear Red for Women" observance will include free cholesterol screenings, health presentations, food demos, lectures, a charity walk to provide athletic shoes for local schoolchildren and more. All events are open to staff, faculty and students.
Feb. 2 at the Student Recreation Center, nutritionists will teach how to make trail mix from 1-3 p.m.
Feb. 5 at the East Carolina Heart Institute at ECU from 8-11:30 a.m., free cholesterol screenings will be done for 100 people. Call 744-3517 for an appointment. From noon-1 p.m., Dr. Noel Peterson, an ECU cardiologist, will speak on women's heart health. Tours of the heart institute, an outpatient, educational and research facility, will follow.
Feb. 6 at the Student Recreation Center from 8-11:45 a.m., 200 cholesterol-screening slots are available. Call 328-6387 for an appointment. At noon, the Heart and Sole Walk will collect new athletic shoes for schoolchildren ages 5 to 14. The walk around campus will last approximately 30 minutes.
Heart disease is the leading killer of women in America, according to the American Heart Association.
"Oftentimes women do not recognize the symptoms of cardiovascular disease, which can range from typical crushing chest pain to mild chest discomfort, arm pain, jaw pain, shortness of breath and fatigue," Peterson said. "We need to raise awareness of the prevalence of cardiovascular disease in females and urge women to 'know their numbers' (tests that assess risk factors for heart disease) and be empowered to take the necessary steps to change their lifestyles and lower their risk of cardiovascular disease."
The events are sponsored by ACT-WEL, campus recreation and wellness, the East Carolina Heart Institute at ECU, ECU Physicians, the Committee on the Status of Women and ECU human resources.