In recognition of National Heart Month in February, Saint Agnes Hospital is honored to host the 10th Annual
Red Dress SM Sunday. Red Dress Sunday is an innovative faith-based health education and outreach program designed to raise awareness of the devastating effects of heart disease among women. This year’s Red Dress Sunday event will be held in over 130 congregations throughout the region on February 9th.
We are proud to announce our tenth anniversary of celebrating Red Dress Sunday! Without the inspired participation of over 130 churches throughout the region, our mission to spread the word about heart disease in women would have faltered. In order to ensure a vibrant initiative as we continue to grow and to better accommodate requests for information regarding Red Dress Sunday and heart disease we have developed this website. Here you will find all of the materials that you will need to make your Red Dress Sunday celebration a success. We have put together an array of materials to be shared throughout congregations with one goal: changing the impact cardiovascular disease has on women. We encourage you to take full advantage of all of the materials on this site. You will see an area for Red Dress Sunday, geared toward preparing for a successful and impactful event, as well as a tool kit filled with helpful and educational materials.
The Red Dress is the national symbol for women and heart disease awareness introduced by The Heart Truth® in 2003. Saint Agnes is proud of our partnership with The Heart Truth® campaign which is sponsored by the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
The Saint Agnes Hospital Cardiovascular Institute is not only committed to the advanced treatment of heart disease, but also to the prevention by educating and raising awareness. Heart disease is the #1 cause of death among women, yet most women don’t recognize this threat. In fact, less than half of all women are aware of healthy levels for blood pressure and cholesterol and key risk factors in cardiovascular disease. The new Women’s Heart Center at Saint Agnes was created to change that. The symptoms of heart disease can often be more difficult to recognize in women than in men. Fortunately, almost every risk factor is preventable. To learn more about our Heart Health Assessment, visit stagnes.org/womensheart or call 1-855-410-4YOU(4968) to schedule your appointment.
Thanks to everyone who came out for our 2013 Women’s Heart Health Symposium. The event was a great success, and many of you left inspired to make changes in your own life and to share the truth about heart disease with others. Our panel answered many of your questions about heart disease and Red Dress Sunday, but there were several additional questions you had after the event. Below are the answers to those questions:
Q: How do you distinguish exhaustion from a heart health problem versus a thyroid condition that mimics the same signs? (i.e. heavy breathing after climbing stairs, wheezing from walking, etc.)
A: The short answer is, you can’t. The best way to find out is to see your primary care provider, who will talk to you about your symptoms, examine you and obtain blood work. He or she may schedule you for an EKG. Be vocal in your concern about your exhaustion being related to a heart condition, and if you feel that that concern is not being addressed, you can always see a cardiologist. It is also recommended that all women over the age of 18 get a 60 Minute Heart Check, learn more here.
Q: I have a bad habit of starting an exercise routine and then after two weeks, I just stop. What tips can you suggest that will help me stay motivated, longer term?
A: There are a few things that will help, the first being to make it FUN. If you aren’t enjoying it, you definitely will not continue with it. If you hate the treadmill, don’t get on it. Instead, sign up for an aerobics or ZUMBA class. Take a walk every morning and see it as an opportunity to also get some fresh air. There are lots of options so don’t force yourself to do something that you dread. Second, find a buddy to exercise with you! When someone else is counting on you to show up, you are much more likely to stay committed. Third, just do something—you don’t have to feel like it is an all or nothing decision. Simply moving more each day will help!
Q: Ice cream is my downfall! What are some healthy alternatives?
A: Low fat or fat free ice cream options are available in every grocery store; just be sure to keep your portions in check. Also, think of different things that you can freeze that will give you a cool treat, without packing in a lot of useless calories. Freeze your grapes and they become a tasty cool treat. Another idea is to freeze your regular yogurt Take it out of the freezer about 20 minutes before you want to eat it, and enjoy! Or add some fruits and spinach or kale to that yogurt for a delicious and nutritious smoothie. Recipe here.
Q: I would like to line a speaker up for Red Dress Sunday at my church. Who should we ask and how long should they talk?
A: Speakers add a lot of value to your Red Dress Sunday presentation. First of all, talk with your pastor and confirm that he or she is willing to allocate time during service for a guest speaker. Assuming the answer is “yes,” talk with the members of your congregation and try to find someone who has been touched by heart disease. Maybe a member of your church has been diagnosed, or has survived a heart attack. If not, it would also be valuable if someone could tell a story about one of their loved ones. Perhaps someone’s mom, brother or aunt had heart disease, and can share that experience. Another option is to ask someone from your congregation who lives a healthy lifestyle to talk about why they make good choices, and how being healthy makes them happy. We suggest that a guest speaker talk for about 5 minutes, as this gives the person enough time to share their story or some valuable information, but without consuming too much time during service.
Q: No one in my family has had a heart attack. Does this mean I am not at risk?
A: Anyone can be at risk. Although family history is a key indicator, someone has to be the first, and the goal is to make sure it’s not YOU.
Q: I try to make nutritious meals but get tired of eating salad and drinking water. Sometimes I feel like those are the only things I can eat and drink and still be sticking to my diet. What are some specific foods I can eat and stay on track?
A: First and foremost, eating the same things all the time will NOT work for anyone, long-term! Second, this is not about being “on a diet” but instead about making positive choices that you can live with. There are a lot of ways to still enjoy the foods you love, without compromising taste, quality or variety. Do you love macaroni and cheese? Try using whole wheat pasta and a low fat cheese. Grill your chicken rather than frying it. Eat one piece of pizza and a big salad, rather than a small salad and three pieces of pizza. It’s all about choices, and remember, they are yours to make – just make them smart ones!
Q: What is involved with the 60-Minute Heart Check?
A: The 60-Minute Heart Check is a great tool to help you understand your risk factors for developing heart disease, as well as what changes you can make in your day-to-day life to minimize those risks. You receive a personal, one on one consultation with our certified cardiovascular nurse, where you will discuss your family medical history and conduct a comprehensive series of screenings, that will help us understand your risks and what needs to be done to prevent or halt the progression of heart disease.
Q: What is the consensus about coconut oil in the diet? Is it true that it is high in saturated fat although it does not contain cholesterol?
A: Coconut oil is high in a saturated fat called medium chain triglycerides – these fats work differently than other types of saturated fat in the body. However, research on the effects of these types of fat is very preliminary. At this time I would focus on known heart healthy oils – Olive, Canola, Sunflower, Corn, Peanut & Soybean Oils. These oils are high in the healthy fats (polyunsaturated and monounsaturated) and have been shown to raise HDL cholesterol.
Q: I have heard new information that Crystal Light is not as good for you as it was first thought. I have stopped drinking soda and now drink water with Crystal Light. Should I stop drinking it? What are your thoughts about Crystal Light?
A: You are much better off drinking the Crystal Light! One 12oz can of Coca-Cola has 140 calories and almost 40gm of sugar – think of how much you usually drink in a day? – those numbers can add up fast! Cutting back just 250-500 calories a day can allow for 1/2 – 1lb wt loss per week! Crystal Light has just 5 calories per 8oz, 0gm of sugar, is fat free and sodium free. The concern with Crystal Light is the use of the sugar substitute “aspartame”. Some research has linked the use of aspartame to higher rates of lymphoma and leukemia, however, scientists and other professional groups believe this sweetener is safe! Some people have complaints with aspartame that include headaches and a chemical flavor. You can safely consume 97 packets of aspartame or Equal each day for life.
These materials offer valuable information regarding many aspects of heart health including diet, exercise, healthy tips and much more. These materials are valuable leave behinds for your congregants. Please feel free to download and print as many as you like!
Reducing Your Risks (PDF)English
Screenings and Support Groups (PDF)English
Red Dress Sunday Poster (PDF)English
Heart to Heart (PPT)English
We have provided some of our most delicious heart-healthy recipes for you to make and to share!
These materials will help give you a better understanding of what Red Dress Sunday is all about so that you can spread the word
|All Saints Lutheran Church|
|Allen AME Church|
|Assemblies of the Emmanuel Church|
|Augsburg Evangelical Lutheran Church|
|Bladensburg SDA Church|
|Boleys Chase Parish Church|
|Calvary Baptist Church|
|Calvary Community Church|
|Central Church of Christ|
|Changing Lives Christian Outreach Ministries|
|Christ Institution Baptist Church|
|Christian Community Church of God|
|Christian Memorial Church|
|Christian Unity Temple|
|Cookleys C Baptist Church|
|Cornerstone Church of Christ|
|Damascus Church of the Nazarene|
|Destiny Christian Church|
|Divine Wisdom Church|
|Douglas Memorial Community Church|
|Dykes Chapel Baptist Church|
|Ebenezer AME Church|
|Emmanuel CC Church|
|Emmarts United Methodist Church|
|Enon Baptist Church|
|Epworth United methodist Chapel|
|Evangel Missionary Baptist Church|
|Faith and Grace Worship Center|
|First Bapstist Church of Annapolis|
|First Baptist Church of Elkridge|
|First BaptistChurch of Back River|
|First Corinthians Baptist Church|
|First Latin American Church of the Nazarene|
|First Mount Calvary Baptist Church|
|First Mount Olive Freewill Baptist Church|
|First United Methodist Church|
|Forest Park Community Church|
|Freedom Temple AME Zion Church|
|Friendly United Charity Baptist Church|
|Galilee Baptist Church|
|Gillis Memorial Christian Community Church|
|Good Shepherd Church God in Christ|
|Gospel Tabernacle Baptist Church|
|Greater Bethesda Missionary Baptists Church|
|Greater Church of the Risen Savior|
|Greater Gethsemane Missionary Baptist Church|
|Greater Harvest Baptist Church|
|Greater Remnant Church of God in Christ|
|Gwynn Oak United Methodist Church|
|Halethrope-Relay United Methodist Church|
|House of Refuge|
|Huber Memorial Church|
|Hunting Ridge Presbyterian Church|
|Kingdom Worship Center|
|Koinonia Baptist Church|
|Liberty Grace Church|
|Lincoln Park United Methodist Church|
|Living World Minsitries|
|Metropolitan United methodist Church|
|Morning Star Baptist Church|
|Morning Star Baptist Church of Christ|
|Mount Hebron Baptist Church|
|Mount Moriah Church of God In Christ|
|Mt. Calvary AME Church|
|Mt. Calvary Star Baptist Church|
|Mt. Carmel Baptist Church|
|Mt. Gregory U.M. Church|
|Mt. Joy AME|
|Mt. Olive AME|
|Mt. Pisgah AME Church|
|Mt. Pleasant Church Ministries|
|Mt. Sinai Baptist Church|
|Mt. Sinai Temple|
|New All Saints Catholic Church|
|New Christian Memorial Church|
|New Covenant Worship Center|
|New Friendship Baptist Church|
|New Frontiers of Faith Baptist Church|
|New Hutingdon Baptist Church|
|New Metropolitan Baptist Church|
|New Psalmist Baptist Church|
|New St John Baptist|
|New St Mark Baptist Church|
|New Union Baptist Church|
|New Zion Baptist Church|
|Oak Street AME Church|
|Paterson Ashbury AME Zion|
|Payne Memorial Church|
|Pennsylvania Avenue AME Zion Church|
|Perfecting Prayer and Praise Ministries|
|Perkins Square Baptist Church|
|Pilgrim Temple Church|
|Progressive 1st Baptist|
|Providence Baptist Church, Inc.|
|Rehoboth Light of the World Church|
|Renewed Hope Christian Church|
|Restoration Worship Center|
|Restoring Life International|
|Rising Sun First Baptist Church – Catonsville|
|Rising Sun First Baptist Church – Woodlawn|
|Saint Paul AME Church|
|Sharp Street UMC|
|Shiloh Christian Community Church|
|Soul Harvest Church and Ministries|
|Southern Baptist Church|
|St. Agnes Roman Catholic Church|
|St. Ann Roman Catholic Church|
|St. Bartholomew's Episcopal Church|
|St. Bernadine Roman Catholic Church|
|St. Francis Xavier Catholic Church|
|St. John C.C. Church|
|St. John United Methodist Church|
|St. Luke U.M. Church|
|St. Paul Community Baptist Church|
|St. Stephens AME Church|
|Sweet Hope Freewill Baptist|
|The Blessed baptist Church of God|
|The Central Baptist Church|
|The Church of the Redeemed of the Lord|
|The Empowerment Temple Church|
|The House of Judah Ministries|
|Timonium Presbyterian Church|
|Timothy Baptist Church|
|Trinity Presbyterian Church|
|Union Baptist Church|
|Union Bethel AME Church|
|Union Memorial United Methodist Church|
|Victory Ministries of Christ|
|Waters AME Church|
|Wayland Baptist Church|
|Whitestone Baptist Church|
|Winston Avenue Baptist Church|
|World Wide Prayer of Faith and Ministries|