Women and heart disease: The Heart Truth
The Heart Truth is a national bilingual public health campaign created to raise awareness about heart disease and stroke among women of all ages and ethnic backgrounds. The aim of The Heart Truth is to encourage women to become engaged in their heart health by teaching them how to reduce their risk factors through diet, physical activity and other strategies. It is based on a successful and effective, evidence-based program that was fully funded by the U.S. government through the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute. In fact, this program improved heart disease health risk awareness among U.S. women from 34% in 2000 to 56% in 2006.
The Heart and Stroke Foundation launched this campaign across Canada in 2008 because the face of heart disease in Canada was changing, becoming younger, increasingly female and ethnically diverse. It consists of:
A key component of The Heart Truth is the Red Dress Fashion Show, which typically takes place during Fashion Week in March. The iconic Red Dress symbol is designed to engage women of all ages, sizes, ethnic backgrounds and socio-economic status in the campaign.
The Heart Truth campaign is lead by a Leadership Council of 18 prominent Canadian women who provide advice on the direction of the program. This council includes renowned women such as Olympic athlete Diane Jones Konihowski, TV broadcaster Vicki Gabereau and many others.
The Heart Truth has been actively and financially supported by leading Canadian corporations from various sectors. Financial and other support for this campaign represents a tremendous opportunity for the federal government.
Last reviewed: April 2010
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