September is Heart Awareness Month and the #HaveHeart campaign sees HSFSA ambassadors take live on-air as well as public screenings in order to find out their Heart Age.
Heart Age is a revolutionary tool developed to portray your risk of heart disease and stroke in simple terms - by presenting you with your heart’s real age. The only way to find out your Heart Age, is to get screened. A simple blood sugar, cholesterol and blood pressure test provides you with the numbers required to take the Heart Age test. The aim of #HaveHeart is to get the public to get tested and take notice of the real age of their hearts in order to take appropriate action. Once the public has their numbers, they are able to insert them into the heart age calculator available on www.heartfoundation.co.za
From left to right: Lisa Raleigh, Mark Pilgrim and L'loyd Cele having their real heart ages calculated.
Our first celebrity to take a stand against heart disease and stroke is singer, and Heart and Stroke Foundation SA ambassador, L’loyd Cele.
“I always strive to lead a healthy life as far as possible, but you simply don’t know your numbers unless you get tested! Screening was quick and painless and I just couldn’t wait to find out my Heart Age. I am very proud that I have taken the Heart Age test and that my heart is in fact 29 years old - a whole 4 years younger than my real age!” said Cele.
He continues: “It doesn’t matter what the outcome is, what really matters is that you get tested and know your numbers. Only then have you taken your first step to better heart health and do you have the knowledge and power to make changes to your diet and lifestyle.”
Cele further challenges all his celebrity friends, family and the public to get tested. The HSFSA has made this a whole lot easier by partnering with national retailer Dis-chem who will be providing free screenings across the country during the whole month of September.
The HSFSA is also proud to announce additional support from ambassador and radio personality, Mark Pilgrim, who was publicly screened at Dischem in Benmore Shopping Centre on 02 September. “I check my numbers annually, I simply cannot afford to take any chances, I do it for my own sake and my family’s sake!”
Yet another well known personality who has pledged her support is lifestyle and wellness expert, Lisa Raleigh, screened at La Lucia Mall on 09 September. According to Raleigh, “Being young and in shape doesn’t mean you can ignore your numbers. Get informed about your health status - and get tested!”
Behind the Heart Age test and celebrity challenge lies a serious reality - heart disease and stroke is responsible for 1 in 6 deaths in South Africa every year. More than half of these deaths are in people younger than 65 years. However 80% of deaths are preventable by making changes to one's diet and lifestyle like eating healthier, stop smoking and getting active.
To further spread the word to get tested and care for your heart the HSFSA is partnering with a number of radio and TV stations across South Africa. We will be hitting the road and screening DJs and TV presenters live on-air, as they show us they HaveHeart and talk about their numbers. We hope that this will further encourage the public to go out and do the same. Screenings can be done at your local clinic or pharmacy AND are free for the month of September at any Dis-chem pharmacy nationwide.
Is your heart younger than your favourite celebs?
We are also calling on the public to HaveHeart for South Africa and help make South Africa a healthier country. We need each and every person’s help to create awareness about heart disease and encourage and challenge one another to get screened. To help us, we are asking the public to get involved: once they have been screened, we ask them to share their screening pictures or selfies with us on Facebook and/or Twitter by using #HaveHeart then like our page, share our page, or retweet, and stand a chance of winning great spot prizes!
Heart Month and the #HaveHeart campaign is proudly sponsored by Flora, Dis-chem and Pharma Dynamics.