SEPTEMBER: Childhood Obesity, HBP, A-Fib, Hispanic Heritage, World Heart Day

September 01, 2016



Childhood Obesity Awareness Month

The White House declared September to be National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month in order to educate on and promote healthier eating and increased physical activity by all the Nation’s children. Childhood obesity rates have tripled since 1963. Today, 1 in 3 kids is considered obese. Obese children are more likely to become obese adults. 

Parents, you can help your kids have a healthy childhood and teach them healthy habits to take into adulthood. Try serving a plate of colorful food, swapping sugar-sweetened beverages for natural infused water, staying away from the Salty 6, and making sure your kids stay physically active.

Infographic-AHA Sugar recommendations

National Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Month

A normal heart contracts and relaxes at a regular rhythm due to cells that send electric impulses signaling the heart to pump blood. In atrial fibrillation, the atria (the heart’s two upper chambers) beat irregularly and quickly. This causes the heart to pump poorly and risks the body not getting the oxygen it needs. National Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Month serves to educate the public on the importance of AFib awareness, the symptoms to look out for, and the risks that come with it. Visit these pages for more information:

American Heart Association's Council on Hypertension 2016 Scientific Sessions 

This is a three day scientific program with more than 500 presentations focusing on recent advances in hypertension research.  Follow the news daily 14–17, 2016 from Orlando, FL via @HeartNews.

Hypertension 2016 logo vertical


Hispanic Heritage Month

Celebrating National Hispanic Heritage Month begins on September 15th and goes until October 15th. The month celebrates Hispanic heritage and culture and recognizes the contributions of Hispanic and Latino Americans to the United States. Since Hispanics are the largest and fastest growing ethnic population in the United States, Hispanic Heritage Month is widely recognized across the nation.

Hispanics, unfortunately, have a higher risk of developing cardiovascular diseases because of increased high blood pressure, obesity, and diabetes associated with the lifestyle and culture. Though hurdles like language barriers, lack of transportation, and lack of health insurance can make change difficult, lifestyle adjustments can reduce their risk of developing these diseases. For these reasons, the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association recommends that everyone learns and shares the following tips and resources:  

  1. Health is your best heritage: Access the new Hispanic Heritage Month resources - in particular the infographic and quick quiz - specifically designed to help Hispanic individuals, families and communities increase their heart and brain health knowledge and access culturally tailored tools. Additionally, "go social" and recognize the icon month with a Twibbon for your Facebook and Twitter profile. Whether you are Hispanic/Latino or simply wish to support Hispanic Heritage...there's a Twibbon for that!
  2. Heart your heart: The most common heart attack symptom is chest pain or discomfort. Other common symptoms, especially in women, are shortness of breath, nausea/vomiting, and back or jaw pain. Learn more at and help raise awareness in recognition of World Heart Day , September 29.
  3. Beat the clock, F.A.S.T.: When someone has a stroke, seconds can mean the difference between life, permanent disability and death. Learn the acronym F.A.S.T. to recognize the signs immediately, (F - face drooping; A - arm weakness; S - speech difficulty; T - time to call 9-1-1).
  4. Less salt, more sweat: Let's face it! There are no shortcuts. Healthy habits like consuming less sodium and staying physically active are key to preventing vascular diseases. The great news is that you're not alone. For online fitness support, women can join Go Red Get Fit and everyone can pledge to eating less salt.
  5. Better to know Hands-Only CPR: Latinos are 30 percent less likely to have bystander CPR performed on them during a cardiac event. Knowledge is power! Two simple steps can give you the skills you need to potentially save a life. Watch the "Mama Knows Best" video to learn them. 

Visit these pages for more information:

World Heart Day

World Heart Day is a world-wide event that takes place annually on September 29th. According to the World Heart Federation, it is “a chance for people across the globe to take part in the world's biggest intervention against cardiovascular disease”. This year the focus is on what everyone can do to fuel their hearts and power their lives. Visit the World Heart Day page for more information.

Important Days in September

9/1-9/30 – National Childhood Obesity Awareness Month, National Atrial Fibrillation Awareness Month

9/5 – Labor Day in the United States

9/11 – Grandparents Day

9/15-10/15 – National Hispanic Heritage Month

9/14-9/17 – AHA's Council on Hypertension 2016 Scientific Sessions

9/22 – First day of Fall

9/27 Facebook Q&A - "What causes stroke?" 

9/29World Heart Day