Guest Blog: World Heart Day

This guest blog was written by our friends at Heart & Stroke who work hard to realize their vision of healthy lives free of heart disease and stroke for all Canadians. Learn more about the work their doing, and the importance of spreading awareness about heart-healthy living during World Heart Day.

Jacquie Li

WORLD HEART DAY by Sonia Lallier, Community Relationship Specialist

On September 29th, 2021, countries around the globe will celebrate World Heart Day. Created by the World Heart Federation, World Heart Day was founded to bring awareness to cardiovascular disease and related conditions. It is a global campaign during which individuals, families, communities, and governments around the world are encouraged to take charge and bring awareness to the importance heart-healthy living. The Heart and Stroke Foundation of Canada is proud to support this important day.

Heart disease, stroke and related conditions are the #1 killer globally and continue to take 1 Canadian life every 5 minutes. That’s why Heart & Stroke works tirelessly to educate Canadians about taking preventative action to avoid control and treat cardiovascular disease. 9 in 10 Canadians have at least one risk factor for heart disease and stroke. We have learned that by controlling risk factors such as tobacco use, unhealthy diet and physical inactivity, at least 80% of premature deaths from heart disease and stroke could be avoided. Learn your risk and how to lower it here.

World Heart Day is also a time for us to reflect on our successes. With the help of our incredible donors, Heart & Stroke has been leading advances in heart and brain health for nearly 70 years. From the prevention of disease, to the development of life-saving interventions, to the transformation of rehabilitation, our research is truly life changing.

In 2020, Heart & Stroke was able to support 818 researchers in medical institutes, universities, hospitals, and communities across Canada. Here are just a few of their achievements:

  • Pioneering discoveries through a health equity lens: Research by Dr. Heather Foulds focuses on the social and cultural factors that impact the heart and brain health of Indigenous women, who are more than twice as likely as non-Indigenous women to die from these diseases. The goal is to explore ways to improve prevention, detection, and treatment. 
  • Finding new pathways in stroke recovery: Research by Dr. Yu Tian Wang is uncovering drugs that could save your brain cells after a stroke. The protection offered by these treatments could prevent cell death and devastating brain damage, improving recovery after a stroke. 
  • Using genetics to beat heart attacks: Research led by Dr. Guillaume Paré has identified genetic variants linked with an increased risk of heart attack at an early age. Identifying risk earlier will open doors to more ways to prevent this devastating condition.

Despite our success we need to keep focused and keep working together. We hope that on this World Heart Day, September 29, you, along with people from all countries and backgrounds will be inspired to unite in the fight against heart disease and stroke; because, when we beat as one, we can accomplish anything.  

Want to learn about more ways you can beat heart disease and stroke? Please visit: www.heartandstroke.ca.

Calgary Corporate Challenge is proud to support Heart & Stroke, one of 10 local charity partners in the 2021 September Games.