Almost three quarters of people in the South West have someone in their family with risk factors that put them greater risk of heart disease, according to new statistics released ahead of the British Heart Foundation’s (BHF) Wear it. Beat it. campaign to get the nation wearing red to fight heart disease on Friday 5th February.
The BHF poll revealed over half of people in the South West (53%) fear that a loved one could be struck down with a potentially life-threatening heart attack or stroke in the future. Over two fifths (41%) have already lost someone or know a loved one affected by heart disease.
Despite this, almost a third (32%) of people in the South West said although they might worry about a loved one’s health they’re too afraid to talk to them about it.
Almost three quarters of people polled in the region (72%) said they know someone in their family with one of the major risk factors for heart disease. Two fifths (40%) knew someone with high blood pressure, three in ten (30%) knew someone with high cholesterol while over a quarter (28%) knew someone who is overweight or obese.
Yet two fifths (40%) of people in the South West say they’re reluctant to talk about health issues with loved ones for fear of upsetting someone.
Around 922,000 people are living with heart and circulatory disease in the South West.
The BHF’s Wear it. Beat it. campaign aims to raise £1million this February 5th to help fund new life saving research in the fight against heart disease. The nation’s heart charity is calling on everyone to wear red and hold a fundraising event to help save more lives and protect more families from the devastation of heart disease.
Since 2009 the campaign has raised over £6million towards new cardiovascular science. Last year more than an incredible 23,000 people took part in Wear it. Beat it. and the BHF is calling for even more of you to get involved this year to help raise £1million for life saving research.
Sign up online at www.bhf.org.uk/red or call 0300 330 0645 and get your free fundraising pack full of fun ideas about how to get involved.
Dr Mike Knapton, Associate Medical Director at the BHF, said: “Heart disease can strike anyone at any age, without warning. That’s why it’s vital we do everything we can to reduce our risk and protect our hearts against these devastating conditions.
“This survey highlights just how important it is for us to talk about the UK’s biggest killer with our friends and family.
“Too many lives are cut short by heart disease every year. We urgently need to accelerate research into finding new ways to fight it. By signing up to Wear it. Beat it. you can help fund cutting-edge research to better understand, treat and predict who is at risk.”
For more information and to get your free fundraising kit visit www.bhf.org.uk/red or call 0300 3300645