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Comedian Sherri Shepherd’s message to women: Know your heart numbers

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – One in three women die as a result of heart disease each year making it the number one killer among women in the United States. But actress, comedian and health advocate, Sherri Shepherd, along with nationally recognized cardiologist, Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum, are on a mission to change that. The two have teamed up with the American Heart Association’s ‘Go Red for Women’ campaign to help women of all ages across the country take control of their health.

Last year, Shepherd was overweight, diabetic and in overall poor health. Layering that on top of the stress of a pandemic? She knew she had to make a change.

“We weren’t designed to be around our kids twenty-four-seven and online schooling was stressing me out,” she told News 8. “How my son failed gym class when he was right next door is beyond me. So, I gained weight. But then I said to myself ‘I want to live’ and ‘I want to feel good.’

Shepherd began incorporating more fruits and vegetables into her diet. She put aside sugar. She put aside salt. Gyms were closed so she took up roller skating and salsa dancing. Today, Shepherd is no longer diabetic and is feeling better than ever.

“Heart disease kills more women than all cancers combined,” said Steinbaum. “As scary as that sounds, 80 percent of the time it is preventable and it is about knowing those numbers and knowing your risk factors.

Those numbers include your cholesterol, blood pressure, blood sugar and body mass index which is an indicator of obesity. The first step, Steinbaum says, is knowing your risk and getting those numbers checked.

“I think as women, we tend to put ourselves last,” Shepherd adds. “But when you put yourself first, you can do so much more for other people and your family and feel good doing it.”

Dr. Steinbaum echos this statement.

“Health is everything. Without your health you have nothing and you can do nothing. And I believe we all have too much to offer this world. We’re all here for a purpose. But you can’t fulfill that purpose unless you’re feeling good.”

For more information about the American Heart Association’s ‘Go Red for Women’, click here.

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