Pat Neff Tower 'Goes Red' For Heart Association
It hasn't happened often in Baylor University's history that the lights atop the Pat Neff Hall tower have been illuminated in any color other than the traditional green. But on the evening of Feb. 4, the lights were programmed to "Go Red" in support of the American Heart Association's National Wear Red Day for Women and the "Go Red for Women" campaign.
The campaign was launched in 2004 to increase awareness of heart disease and stroke among women, and this year will continue its efforts to empower women to take charge of their heart health.
Baylor's Pat Neff Hall tower, which is clearly visible from Interstate 35, joined a list of other U.S. landmarks that went "red" on Feb. 4, including the Empire State Building, Washington Monument, Graceland, Niagara Falls and the Seattle Space Needle.
Well-known people in Central Texas also wore red that Friday, including Waco Mayor Mae Jackson, local news anchors and Baylor head women's basketball coach Kim Mulkey-Robertson.
"Breast cancer research and heart research will always be important to me," Mulkey-Robertson said. "It hits close to home as I have a mother, a grandmother, and a mother-in-law all affected by these health issues."
Heart disease is the leading cause of death for women in the United States, however only 13 percent of women consider heart disease their greatest health threat, according to an American Heart Association study conducted by Harris Interactive in 2003. Since 1984, more women than men have died of heart disease, stroke and other cardiovascular diseases.
Unlike many other chronic diseases like cancer, cardiovascular disease is mostly preventable. Understanding the serious health threats of heart disease and stroke can make a lifesaving difference for women.
Although more research needs to be conducted on cardiovascular disease in women, critical information is available to help women learn about heart disease and stroke and make lifestyle changes to reduce their risk.
Risk factors for heart disease and stroke, such as obesity, tobacco use, physical inactivity, diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure, can be controlled though lifestyle modification and appropriate use of medications.
Regular exercise and a healthy diet reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease by improving blood circulation throughout the body, keeping weight under control, improving blood cholesterol levels and preventing and managing high blood pressure.
In addition, the American Heart Association recommends that women eat foods low in saturated fat, cholesterol and total fat.
For more information, visit the American Heart Association.