Go Red for Women: More than just a fashion statement

National "Wear Red Day" kicks off February’s American Heart Month activities to increase awareness, raise money and promote change.

  • Wear red in February to raise awareness and prompt a conversation about women’s heart health.
  • Spread the word online through social media.
  • Support the cause with a donation to support lifesaving research.


It’s a common story for many women. You’ve noticed a dull ache in your chest and experienced shortness of breath for weeks. You tell yourself, “It’s nothing,” or “I’ll check into it if it starts getting serious,” but mainly you ignore it and hope it goes away.

Don’t wait too long. It could be heart disease or a heart attack if you have:

  • Chest pain or discomfort
  • Pain in the jaw, neck or throat
  • Pain in the back or upper abdomen
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Extreme fatigue

Heart disease causes about 1 in every 3 female deaths a year, and nearly 80 percent of those cardiac events can be prevented with education and lifestyle changes, according to the American Heart Association.

Can anything be done to change the numbers? The American Heart Association and the experts at Swedish share some ways you can help by raising awareness, encouraging your friends and family to get screened and adopting healthy habits yourself, so you don’t become a statistic.

Go Red for Women

The first Friday in February is designated annually by the American Heart Association as national "Wear Red Day." The day kicks off federally-designated American Heart Month to unite women across the nation to raise awareness of heart disease and stroke, and what they can do to reduce their risk.

Across the country, Go Red for Women luncheons serve as a cornerstone for the Wear Red movement, encouraging women to prevent these diseases with a healthy lifestyle and necessary health screenings. Grab a friend and join a local event. 

Here are some ways to get involved and spread awareness 

Wear red

Wear red on National Wear Red Day—or any day in February—to get the conversation started about women and heart disease. It’s one of the easiest ways you can show your support. If you’re a survivor of a past cardiac event, sharing your story can help other women recognize the signs of cardiovascular distress and get the help they need before it’s too late.

Want to make it official? Shop for the classic red dress pin, a new shirt or maybe some workout gear at ShopHeart.org. Proceeds help support the American Heart Association’s efforts.


Your generous donations make it possible to continue lifesaving research, education and community outreach that improve the health and wellness of women across the country. Contribute to your favorite heart-related organization or the Swedish Heart & Vascular Institute to make a difference in the health of the women in your community. 

Get social

Use your social media accounts to list the facts about women and heart disease. Share how heart disease has affected your life and invite your friends to do the same. Use #WearRedandGive to encourage others to donate. Post pictures of yourself wearing red and encourage others to join in.

Plan an event

Turn your awareness efforts into a party. Organize a heart-healthy potluck at work and make wearing red a requirement to join in. Or host a red-themed dinner at home complete with red decorations and table settings. Put together a trivia contest that highlights facts about women and heart disease. It doesn’t have to be Pinterest-worthy; just get the conversation started and share life-saving information.

It’s up to you

National "Wear Red Day" is an important reminder for women to recognize their heart’s warning signs and take action:

  • Know your numbers—Get your blood pressure and cholesterol levels checked regularly.
  • Own your lifestyle—Make a conscious decision to make healthy choices. Stop smoking, eat a balanced diet and exercise.
  • Educate—Learn the facts about heart disease and what you can do to stop it from affecting your health


Find a doctor

The cardiologists at Swedish understand that women experience heart disease differently than men. They use advanced technology to evaluate your risk factors and develop a strategy to help you strengthen your heart and prevent future cardiac events. Find a doctor you can trust in our provider directory.

Share how you #WearRedandGive for National Wear Red Day with the readers @swedish.

Related resources

Heart disease and stroke prevention: It starts with knowing the risks

Quick guide: Prevent & reverse artery plaque buildup

50 and fabulously healthy: wellness tips for women

This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.

About the Author

The Swedish Heart & Vascular Team is committed to bringing you many years of expertise and experience to help you understand how to prevent, treat and recover from cardiovascular diseases and conditions. From tips to eating better to exercise and everything in between, our clinical experts know how to help you help your heart.

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