The recognition serves to promote awareness of those causes and to encourage spreading the word about everything from grandparents to child abuse, teachers to bosses.
This month is American Heart Health Month, and Friday was Wear Red Day in observance of both the month and the focus on women's heart health.
This is one of those months that deserves our attention and should inspire us to refocus our attention on working to improve our health, particularly our heart health.
In Sampson County, where obesity rates have skyrocketed for the past few years, diabetes continues to be a problem and heart issue still remain a bleak statistic, it is time we do more than recognize the day and month. It's time for us to put into practice all those things which are promoted during this time of year.
We should begin this month, but maintain a new and healthier lifestyle next month and the next and the next, for the rest of our lives.
According to figures released by the N.C. Center for Health Statistics and printed in our paper Friday, the number of Sampson County citizens hospitalized for heart-related ailments in 2009 was over double the state average. There were a total of 260 Sampsonsians hospitalized compared to the state average of 129.
The number of deaths from heart disease in Sampson County during that same year were 418 compared to the state average of 196.5 deaths.
What a picture that paints. What a reality it should wake us up to.
Couple that with the fact that coronary heart disease is the number one killer among women in the U.S. and it's clear to see we all must pay more attention to our health; particularly the things that can help us take better care of our heart.
Exercise is key; so is eating right.
No one likes to give up all the things they like, but if giving it up, or at least cutting back, can save your life, isn't it worth it?
We would argue it is.
Perhaps simply following the mantra of everything in moderation would help.
Anything is better than maintaining the same unhealthy lifestyles we've lived. And it's far more appealing than becoming yet another bleak statistic for this county.
Consider the way you live, the way you eat, the way you exercise, and if you believe there's room for improvement, then improve.
Let's make this month, which focuses on your heart health, more than lip service. Let's make it count.