WASHINGTON, Sept. 28, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- To mark World Heart Day on Thursday, the National Forum for Heart Disease & Stroke Prevention is teaming up with cities to help residents fight heart disease – the nation's leading cause of death.
Mayors across the U.S. are each hosting a special "Move with the Mayor" walk this week. The events are part of a series of 30-minute walks in each city to help residents get on their way to a healthier lifestyle.
"Cardiovascular diseases kill some 800,000 Americans every year. We're tired of seeing our friends and family members dying from a disease that can be prevented," said John Clymer, executive director of the National Forum for Heart Disease & Stroke Prevention. "That's why we're asking everyone to take steps now toward a healthier, happier, longer life. And there's no better day to get started than today -- World Heart Day."
Cities partnering with the National Forum for the weekly "Move With the Mayor Challenges" this year include: Columbia, SC; Green Bay, Wisc.; Lorain, Ohio; Oklahoma City, Okla.; and West Chicago, Ill.
"Our goal is to show how simple it is to become healthier and live longer," Clymer said.
Walking, for example, is one of the easiest ways to lower your chances of heart disease and its risk factors, including high cholesterol, high blood pressure and diabetes, Clymer said. Studies show that walking just 30 minutes a day can lower your risk of heart disease and stroke by up to 40 percent.
"You don't need a gym membership, workout clothes or exercise equipment," said Clymer, whose nonprofit organization focuses on saving lives through public education and policy initiatives. "You just need to walk out the door."
Events on World Heart Day are part of a larger national public education campaign by the National Forum for Heart Disease & Stroke Prevention. The campaign promotes heart-healthy habits, such as cholesterol checks, healthy diets, smoking cessation, stress reduction, and regular physical activity such as daily walking.
In the coming months, the National Forum plans to partner with more cities to improve – and save – even more lives.
"We're asking every American to make a commitment to their heart," Clymer said. "Because when you make a commitment to your heart, you're making a commitment to your family and friends for a healthier future and a better life with them."
To learn more about the walks, visit http://www.nationalforum.org/content/world-heart-day-move-mayor-challenge.
ABOUT THE NATIONAL FORUM FOR HEART DISEASE & STROKE PREVENTION
The National Forum for Heart Disease & Stroke Prevention brings together the most dynamic and diverse organizations in cardiovascular health, providing a forum and outlet for organizations to amplify their voices. Our members currently represent more than 80 national and international organizations from the public and private healthcare organizations, as well as faith, advocacy, academic, and policy settings. The National Forum is an independent non-profit, 501(c)(3), voluntary health organization. To learn more, visit www.nationalforum.org.
ABOUT WORLD HEART DAY
World Heart Day was founded in the year 2000 to inform people around the globe that heart disease and stroke are the world's leading causes of death, claiming 17.3 million lives each year. World Heart Day takes place on Sept. 29 every year.
National Forum for Heart Disease & Stroke Prevention
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SOURCE National Forum for Heart Disease & Stroke Prevention