In 2002, heart disease was the leading cause of death for women in the United States, leading to 1 in 3 deaths. That year, the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute launched The Heart Truth® campaign to debunk the myth that heart disease is a man’s disease. Since then, the campaign has transformed how women think and act about the disease.
The centerpiece of The Heart Truth is the Red Dress, the national symbol for women and heart disease awareness. You probably recognize the Red Dress—it has appeared on 29 billion product packages and comes to life every February during the star-studded Red Dress Collection Fashion Show. The Red Dress® reminds women of the need to protect their heart health and inspires them to take action.
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The good news is that 10 years later women are living longer and healthier lives. Awareness of heart disease in women has nearly doubled. More women are talking to their doctors and taking steps to protect their hearts—making important changes like eating right, being physically active, living smoke-free, and knowing their numbers. Heart disease deaths continue to decline and, today, 1 in 4 women dies of heart disease.
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Although significant progress has been made, there is still work to do. Heart disease is still the #1 killer of women—yet many women still don’t take their risk seriously or personally. This infographic tells a decade-long story of the fight against heart disease and provides an action plan for women to protect their hearts.