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World Heart Day 2013: Healthy Living from Childhood to Adulthood

World Heart Day 2013: Healthy Living from Childhood to Adulthood
Bernadine Racoma

Heart disease has been considered as the number one cause of mortality illness and disease in many countries worldwide for many years. Many families have suffered the loss of loved ones with this medical condition due to lack of care and prevention. With the increasing number of loss of human life noted each year due to Cardiovascular Disease (CVD), the World Heart Federation started a campaign in1999 and called it World Heart Day.

Happy World Heart Day

World Heart Day is not considered a public holiday but it is observed globally every last Sunday of the month of September. This year, it will be on September 29. Every year, posters, brochures, leaflets and other materials are given away so that everyone can be formally informed about how to live with a healthy heart.

Last year’s World Heart Day celebration is viewed to be the most successful event in the history of the whole campaign so far. There were 118 participating countries that joined in the celebration. More than 977 activities were launched in every corner of the globe.

Living with a healthy heart

The causes of heart diseases that lead to high mortality rates are known. Yet, despite warnings and advice coming from medical professionals, some people with heart disease lack the ability to follow healthy habits. Awareness may be generally high worldwide, but there is no discounting the fact there are still communities that do not have any idea how to better take care of their cardiovascular health.

World Heart Day was launched in order to enlighten everyone around the globe about what causes heart disease and how to prevent it. The World Health Organization (WHO) in cooperation with the World Heart Federation works hand in hand to disseminate news and information about preventing CVDs, or if not, control the main risk factors that greatly contribute to mortality by heart disease, at the very least.

Unhealthy diet from childhood onward is one main cause of heart diseases and this year this is one of the areas that the campaign is explicitly focusing on. In observance of World Heart Day there will be talks and seminars about how lack of physical activity can increase the risk for developing heart conditions.

Target groups

A total of 194 governments from various countries met at the World Health Assembly in May of 2012 and discussed how non-communicable diseases (NCD) like CVD affect the increasing mortality rate worldwide. Records show that nearly 50% of the 36 million deaths by NCD were caused by CVD. This is why participating governments all over the world have decided to take action by observing World Heart Day.

The organization’s campaign for a healthy heart does not focus on one age group. The campaign is going to include all age groups, from seniors to small children.

World Heart Day 2013 theme

This year, the World Heart Day’s theme is going to revolve around prevention of CVD amongst children and women. This is some sort of an extension in last year’s theme. Organizers came up with the relevant fact that reaching a 25% reduction in CVD by the year 2025 can be achieved if prevention is practiced from the beginning of life. This year’s campaign is expected to inform people of the measures that they can take in order to reduce the risk of CVD early on in life.

Photo Credit: World Heart Day Poster

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