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American Heart Association Rapid Access Journal Report: Study Finds Racial Gaps Continue in Heart Disease Awareness, Low Knowledge of Heart Attack Warning Signs Among Women
Date:2/10/2010

attack symptoms.
  • Most respondents listed non evidence-based therapies to prevent cardiovascular disease, including the use of multivitamins (69 percent), antioxidants (70 percent), and special vitamins (58 percent); 29 percent cited aromatherapy as a preventive strategy.
  • Of online respondents, the most commonly cited barrier to taking preventive action was family/caretaking responsibility, at 51 percent; confusing media reports was the next most common barrier at 42 percent.
  • Community actions that online respondents thought would be most helpful in encouraging healthier lifestyles included access to healthy foods (91 percent) and public recreation facilities (80 percent), and listing of nutritional information in restaurants (79 percent).

  • The study highlights the need to sustain awareness and educational campaigns for women that incorporate evidence-based prevention messages, Mosca said.

    "It's particularly important that national campaigns cut through the mixed messages women receive and deliver the facts about how they can prevent heart disease," said Mosca, also a spokesperson for Go Red For Women.  "Despite recent research showing no benefit of antioxidant vitamins in women, the majority of women surveyed cited them as a way to prevent heart disease."

    The authors note that the latest survey, which used a cross-sectional sample with an oversampling of racial and ethnic minorities, may represent a "best-case" scenario, because respondents were fairly well-educated.

    The triennial tracking study was funded by the American Heart Association through a grant from Macy's Go Red For Women Multicultural Fund.  Macy's is a national sponsor of Go Red For Women.  The survey was conducted by Harris Interactive.

    Co-authors are Heidi Mochari-Greenberger, M.P.H., R.D.; Rowena J. Dolor, M.D., M.H.S.; L. Kristin N
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    SOURCE American Heart Association
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