Go Red For Women: 10 Years Of Changing Hearts

Go Red For Women graphicIn the first ten years of the Go Red For Women movement, millions of hearts have been changed.

Ten years ago, the American Heart Association discovered that heart disease killed more women than men. And it took more women’s lives than all forms of cancer combined. So Go Red For Women was created – a network of women dedicated to education, support, and research.

READ: “I Didn’t Know I Was Doing So Many Things Wrong”

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Since then, millions of women have been educated on the dangers of heart disease, and made major changes in health care. Here are ten encouraging accomplishments that make all of those involved very proud:

READ: What Every Black Woman Should Know About Her Heart

1. Lives are being saved

  • 34% fewer women now die from heart disease.
  • More than 627,000 women’s lives have been saved.

WATCH: What It Means To Go Red For Women

2. Overall heart health has improved

  • Nearly 90% of participants made healthy lifestyle changes.
  • 37% have lost excess weight.
  • More than half now exercise more.
  • 60% now eat healthier diets.
  • 43% have had their cholesterol checked.

3. Awareness of heart disease has increased

  • 23% increase in awareness that heart disease is the #1 killer of women.

READ: “I Thought I Was Having A Hot Flash”

4. Unhealthy lifestyle risks have decreased

  • Smoking decreased by 15.1%.
  • Cholesterol levels decreased 18.1%.

5. Diversity challenges have been identified and targeted

  • Heart disease rates vary by ethnicity, with unique challenges for each.
  • Targeted efforts are reaching African American and Hispanic women.

J. Dilla: Music For The Cure

j dilla dayJames Dewitt Yancey , better known by the stage names J Dilla and Jay Dee, was an American record producer and rapper who emerged from the mid-1990s underground hip-hop scene in Detroit, Michigan. According to his obituary at NPR.org, he “was one of the music industry’s most influential hip-hop artists, working with big-name acts including A Tribe Called Quest, De La Soul, Busta Rhymes, Erykah Badu, and Common.” Yancey died in 2006 of thrombotic thrombocytopenic purpura or TTP.

Jay_DeeIf someone has TTP, blood clots form in small blood vessels throughout the body. The clots can limit or block the flow of oxygen-rich blood to the body’s organs, such as the brain, kidneys, and heart. As a result, serious health problems can develop. The increased clotting that occurs in TTP also uses up platelets (PLATE-lets) in the blood. Platelets are blood cell fragments that help form blood clots. These cell fragments stick together to seal small cuts and breaks on blood vessel walls and stop bleeding.

With fewer platelets available in the blood, bleeding problems can occur. People who have TTP may bleed inside their bodies, underneath the skin, or from the surface of the skin. When cut or injured, they also may bleed longer than normal.

J Dilla’s illness and medication caused dramatic weight loss in 2003 onwards, forcing him to publicly confirm speculation about his health in 2004. Despite a slower output of major releases and production credits in 2004 and 2005, his cult status remained strong within his core audience. Articles in publications confirmed rumors of ill health and hospitalization during this period, but these were downplayed by Jay himself. The seriousness of his condition became public in November 2005 when J Dilla toured Europe performing from a wheelchair.

Here are just a few of the literally hundreds of songs Dilla produced:

The impact J Dilla had on DJ’s and music producers was tremendous according to bi-coastal DJ Joe Kollege. “Dilla’s production was so funky and soulful and he wasn’t afraid to take chances musically. He was a trendsetter. As a dj,…