Senator Foley Reminds Women To Check Their Heart Health February 1-7, As Part Of Women’s Heart Week

Brian X. Foley

February 03, 2010

Heart Disease is the #1 Killer of Women in NYSHeart disease is the number one killer of women in New York State and across the nation, Senator Foley noted today, acknowledging more than 70,000 New Yorkers who die each year from this disease. Designed as a program that encourages heart health screenings, Women’s Heart Week promotes “prevention, education, symptom awareness and early intervention,” as a way to maintain a healthy life.

“Recognizing symptoms can mean the difference between life and death,” said Senator Foley, adding, “we can actually take steps toward heart health so we never enter that danger zone by making subtle lifestyle changes that save lives.”                                                            

Some symptoms of heart disease include:

  • Pain, pressure, fullness, discomfort or squeezing in the center of the chest
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Stabbing chest pain
  • Radiating pain to shoulder(s), neck, back, arm(s) or jaw
  • Pounding heartbeats (palpitations) or feeling extra heartbeats


Easy steps women can immediately take to build heart health include:

  • Starting a daily exercise calendar that includes designated activities, such as walking, stretches at work after lunch, and catching up on gardening and housework.
  • Practicing deep breathing and relaxation exercises to avoid stress.
  • Staying away from smoke-filled environments.
  • Becoming a leaner cook: switch from whole milk to skim; use egg substitute or egg whites instead of whole eggs; learn baking tricks, such as using cocoa powder instead of baking chocolate.
  • Following recommendations set forth by the National Cancer Institute and eating at least 5 servings of fruits and vegetables every day.


Less than one-third of U.S. adults get regular leisure-time physical activity (light or moderate activity that lasts 30 minutes or more, five times a week); about 10 percent of adults have no physical activity at all in their leisure time.

“Women are juggling work, family and care giving responsibilities, and often place others needs above their own, but a few changes in eating and exercise routines can make all the difference,” said Senator Foley.

According to the Women’s Heart Foundation, heart disease refers to diseases of the heart and blood vessel system, such as coronary heart disease, heart attack, high blood pressure, stroke, chest pain (also called “angina“), and rheumatic heart disease.

Senator Foley encourages women to learn more about their own risk for heart disease, and what they can do to stay healthy, by visiting: