Women’s Health in the Spotlight!

Healthy advice: Dr Gavin Angel, Elinor Bodinger and Natalie Comninos from Citi Bank, with Nicole Jaff, Teresa Harris, Dr Vash Mungal-Singh and Dr Michael Mol.

18 February 2013 | David Jenkin


The Go Red for Women campaign is the first international initiative to focus on education to prevent heart disease and strokes in women.

The first Friday of February was Wear Red Day, which entered its 10th year. Women were encouraged to wear red clothing to show their support for the campaign. CB South Africa hosted a panel discussion on 1 February where experts were invited to discuss these issues.

They included Teresa Harris, a dietician for Pick n Pay, Dr Vash Mungal-Singh, CEO of the Heart and Stroke Foundation, Nicole Jaff, a renowned women’s health expert and author, Dr Gavin Angel, a consultant cardiologist, and master of ceremonies, TV personality Dr Michael Mol.

Jaff pointed out that cases of heart disease were declining in men, but rising in women. She emphasised that women experienced different symptoms and it tended to occur at a later age in women, as prior to menopause estrogen acted as protection.
Harris spoke about preventative measures, which included a proper diet, correct portion sizes, loads of vegetables and fruit, whole grains, dairy products, exercise and lots of water.

Jaff said lifestyle could trump genetics in many cases and she emphasised the importance of exercise.

The panel were in agreement about supplements and the way consumers were often misled to believe that they provided a blanket solution. Harris said, “There is no magic bullet for being healthy.”

Mungal-Singh spoke about ‘heart age tools’, which can be found online for free, and encouraged people to make use of them to determine their heart age. She added that it was important for one to keep track of certain figures which included body-mass index, blood sugar, cholesterol and blood pressure.

As part of the campaign, on 15 February the female staff of CB dressed in red and did a 30 minute walk around Sandton Central to raise awareness.

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