American Heart Month first started in 1964 with a declaration by President Lyndon B. Johnson.  Since then, February has been dedicated to promoting the awareness of cardiovascular health. 

Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the United States.  Statistics for both men and women are alarming and in an effort to empower people to make healthier choices, initiatives have been started to help lower the number of lives lost each year.

One initiative, National Wear Red Day, is celebrated the first Friday in February. This initiative strives to bring national attention to the fact that heart disease is the #1 killer of women, and to raise awareness of women’s health. It’s also a day in which women are encouraged to find out their five most important health numbers: Total Cholesterol, HDL Cholesterol, Blood Sugar, Blood Pressure, and BMI (Body Mass Index). By knowing these numbers, women can find out their risks for developing heart disease and take measures to prevent it.  

Within our community, efforts are being made to raise awareness and take steps to combat heart disease.  During the month of February, the Scotland County Health Department is offering a Heart Health Month Special which includes a blood draw for a lipid profile (HDL, LDL, Triglycerides, Ratio, and Total Cholesterol), and a hemoglobin A1c.  Additionally, height, weight, blood pressure, heart rate, and oxygen saturation may also be checked.

This special will be offered every day from 8-10 a.m. by appointment.  The fee for these services will be $25.00.  Participants must be fasting for at least eight hours and have no alcohol 48 hours before testing.  Please call 465-7275 to schedule an appointment

Today is a great day to take charge of your own heart health!  Whether you get involved with national initiatives, local programs, work out with friends or find ways to motivate yourself…set a goal and get started making 2019 your healthiest year yet!