SHERMAN OAKS, Calif., May 6, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- This May, High Blood Pressure Education Month, Sunkist invites Americans to join in the fight against heart disease by taking the S'alternative Pledge, challenging consumers to flavor their foods with a squeeze of fresh Sunkist® lemons for one week to reduce sodium intake. For each pledge received at www.Sunkist.com/SalternativePledge between May 6 and May 31 Sunkist will donate one dollar (up to $10,000) to the Sister to Sister Foundation, the first national organization dedicated to women's heart disease prevention.
According to the Center of Disease Control (CDC), heart disease and stroke are the leading causes of death in the U.S., with about one in every four deaths attributed to heart disease each year. The primary cause of cardiovascular disease is high blood pressure, which accounts for two-thirds of all strokes and half of heart disease cases. The CDC cautions that too much sodium can increase blood pressure, thereby escalating the risk of heart attack and stroke.
"When it comes to being healthy and fit, it's the little things you do each day that make a difference," said Susan Gurley, Sister to Sister's Executive Director. " We empower women through positive messaging to make simple, manageable lifestyle changes in their daily lives to lead to improved heart-health and using fresh Sunkist lemon juice to flavor food is a healthy choice."
Sunkist is raising awareness of this important health issue with a simple, tangy twist – suggesting a squeeze of fresh lemon to flavor their food. Lemons are "flavor catalysts" meaning they interact with the taste buds so that the flavors that follow are more pronounced. One squeeze of fresh lemon juice naturally enhances the flavor of food without adding sodium, while also offering additional health benefits such as strengthening the immune system and helping regulate the digestive system.
"Sunkist is proud to partner with the Sister to Sister Foundation to raise awareness about high blood pressure and heart disease prevention. We're committed to providing families with fresh citrus that helps promote a healthy lifestyle, which is why we're excited about the S'alternative Pledge and its potential benefits for heart health," said Joan Wickham, advertising and public relations manager for Sunkist Growers. "Available all year, lemons can enhance the flavor of foods to cut down sodium without sacrificing taste, and that's good news for your heart."
Consumers can take the Sunkist S'alternative Pledge by visiting www.sunkist.com/SalternativePledge. After pledging, they can explore the site for fun facts, recipes and even send an eCard to family and friends encouraging them to take a stance against heart disease.
For more information visit http://www.sunkist.com/SalternativePledge.
About Sunkist Growers
Sunkist Growers is a citrus marketing cooperative, founded in 1893, which is owned by and operated for thousands of family farmers growing citrus in California and Arizona. For more information about Sunkist, visit www.sunkist.com.
SUNKIST and S'ALTERNATIVE are registered trademarks of ©2013, Sunkist Growers, Inc. All rights reserved.
About Sister to Sister
The Sister to Sister Foundation is the first organization dedicated solely to women's heart disease prevention and education.
Since 1999, Sister to Sister has collaborated with leading medical experts in the cardiovascular field to educate women on understanding their personal risk for heart disease and concurrently, how healthy lifestyle choices can reduce that risk by up to 82 percent.
Programs include live cardiovascular screenings with immediate results and counseling sessions; Smart for the Heart, a free heart risk online assessment and action tool; international health programs and educational materials; and awareness campaigns that heart disease is a woman's #1 health threat.
For more information visit, www.sistertosister.org.
SOURCE Sunkist Growers