Did you know this is the number one killer of women worldwide?

Why red is the colour to wear

  • One in three women will die from heart disease or stroke
  • Symptoms often go unnoticed

For Jennifer Monaghan, her heart problems came completely out of the blue.

Monaghan, who is now a local volunteer with the Canadian Women’s Heart Health Alliance (CWHHA), found out she had heart disease ten years ago at the age of 42, after suffering a stroke.

“I was astonished at that point because I led a very healthy active life, and I didn’t have any risk factors of heart disease,” Monaghan told Kelowna10. “In order to bring meaning to the whole experience, I started volunteering.”

Her health issues are not uncommon. One in three women will die because of heart disease or stroke. The CWHHA said women remain underdiagnosed, undertreated, and understudied.

That’s why, for the past decade, Monaghan has volunteered at a variety of places, including Heart and Stroke Canada, Interior Health, and the British Heart Foundation.

She, like many others, will be wearing red to raise awareness about heart disease, the number one killer of women worldwide, Sunday, Feb 13.

That day, residents are encouraged to wear red in recognition of the Wear Red Canada campaign, Now in its fourth year, the national initiative promotes women’s heart and vascular health.

Although men’s and women’s hearts look similar, she said, they are quite different.

“Women’s hearts are smaller, they beat faster, our arteries are smaller, plaque builds up differently, and our hormones impact the health of our heart,” she explained.

Monaghan said when most people think of a heart attack, they imagine a man clutching his chest in pain, but for women, 50 per cent of heart attacks go unnoticed.

“Women are also slower to report the signs and symptoms, they might not realize what’s going on,” she said.

She suggests eating healthy, staying fit, and booking regular appointments with a doctor to help the fight against heart disease.

As part of the 2022 campaign, people are encouraged to share images of friends and family wearing red on social media, using the hashtags #WearRedCanada and #HerHeartMatters.

A crane working on the Landmark development and Big White Ski Resort will be lit red on Sunday in support of the initiative.

Published 2022-02-12 by Jordan Brenda

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