The American Heart Association in Charleston is collaborating with local AME churches to raise awareness of the benefits of living a healthy lifestyle. The partnership provides education on the dangers of uncontrolled high blood pressure, often referred to a as the “silent killer” and includes information on making health food choices.
“The African American population is at higher risk, with more 40% of African Americans currently living with high blood pressure. This can lead to cardiovascular disease and stroke making the need for blood pressure education greater than ever,” said American Heart Association Executive Director Katie Schumacher. “We are excited to work with AME churches to raise awareness provide resources to local congregations about the benefits of knowing your blood pressure numbers.”
The partnership is also focusing on healthy food education because maintaining a healthy weight, eating healthy and reducing sodium contribute to maintaining a healthy blood pressure. Church leaders have agreed to adopt a healthy eating policy that will ensure healthy options, such as adding fruits and vegetables and offering non-sweetened beverages are provided at church gatherings,
“We want to encourage a healthier lifestyle through our collaboration. We need to think about drinking water, moving more and being more active because we can control our own health.” said South Carolina Missionary Society Myra Haney Singleton. “Prevention starts with awareness, and we’re working together to provide healthy tools and resources to empower our AME community!”
To learn more about how to know your numbers, visit https://www.heart.org/en/health-topics/high-blood-pressure/find-high-blood-pressure-tools–resources/check-change-icontroli-community-partner-resources. If you are interested in getting your church involved, please email Vonda Evans at [email protected].