UK bleeds red for heart disease

Christian Cevallos

UK students and organizations are taking a stand against one of Kentucky’s biggest killers — heart disease.

According to the American Heart Association, heart disease is the number two killer in Kentucky, barely missing the number one killer — cancer — killer by 1 percent. One in three women die of heart health problems, and 80 percent can be prevented with education and lifestyle change.

Because of the high level of impact heart disease has on Kentucky, and the nation, students and staff at UK are, this week, celebrating Wear Red Week. Wear Red Week promotes awareness and education through community events. The week helps to inform people about how heart disease impacts the body, especially women.

Wear red events are happening all over campus, but two specific organizations are taking a stand against heart disease. The Gill Heart Institute is a medical care center at UK that deals with heart problems and helps inform others of it. For Wear Red Week they are hosting an event called Women’s Heart Health Talk with the director of the Women’s Heart Health Program Dr. Gretchen Wells. She will discuss what one needs to know about maintaining optimal heart health and recognizing the signs that are hard to see when it comes to heart disease.

UK’s own Alpha Chi Omega, although being new to campus, has tried to bring awareness to this problem of heart disease by being just as informative with their voices as with their hands.  

“Alpha Chi Omega hasn’t quite had the chance to get as involved in awareness for physical heart health as we would like, but we are very involved in the awareness for metaphorical heart health, which can be just as important. Alpha Chi Omega has the ‘Love is…’ campaign where our members and others define what love is and how to spread healthy love to others,” said Hope Nelson, the Vice President of UK’s Alpha Chi Omega. “We’ve been promoting Healthy Relationships all week on campus and this is also something we promote year round with our philanthropy of Domestic Violence Awareness.”

With this and other activities the organizations around campus are doing, more attention can be brought to Kentucky’s number two killer.