April 29, 2008

Events of the Heart presents "You've Gotta have Heart"

Can I just say how cool I am? Really cool. Last night was my big poser event where I acted like a big shot and interviewed Brenda Strong about heart disease. It couldn't have gone better. First of all, the whole evening was like my wildest dream come true. It incorporated three of my favorite things in the world: fiber, glamor and schmoozing. Metamucil sponsored Events of the Heart in presenting the performance, "You've Gotta have Heart." Metamucil asked three local bloggers to attend, me, Liz from Everyday Goddess and Kristin from It's All Fun and Games. I had never met the other two before, but the three of us had a grand old time pretending like we were "somebodies" and got front seats at the performance. So in case anybody ever tells you that blogging doesn't matter, I beg to differ. Apparently we're super star hot shots whose opinion matters. Who knew?

But let me just start out by telling you guys a bit about the issue which I really was in the dark on. The event was to raise money and awareness for heart disease education among women. Twelve actors performed a series of monologues relating to heart health. The event is being called "The Angina Monolouges." It was superb. A great mix of humor and tragedy. I have to admit, the final monologue had me weeping.

Here are some pretty shocking facts I learned last night about heart disease that I hope the rest of you women pay attention to:

Breast cancer kills 4% of women. But heart disease kills 44%, more than all the other cancers combined.

1 out of every 2.5 women will die of heart disease or stroke.

Social isolation and heart disease are intertwined. If you live your life without an emotional support network, your chances of getting heart disease go way up.

The symptoms of heart disease among women is different from mens. Women suffer from fatigue and nausia when their hearts begin failing and generally have no idea there is a problem until they are dead. They say death is the number one symptom of heart disease for women because it is almost never diagnosed correctly.

There was a study where over 100 actors went into health clinics and doctors all over the country. They all said the exact same thing, and complained all of the classic symptoms of heart attack. 100 % of the men were treated for heart disease (given EKG and referred to a cardiologist.) Only 50% of the women were treated for heart disease. The rest were treated for other things like depression, gastrointesinal problems, stress, or just dismissed as hypochondriacs.

You can be doing every thing right, diet, exercise, meditation, and still be at high risk of heart disease. It is genetic so if you've got high cholesterol, you need to either take medication to lower it or increase your intake of fiber such as psyllium husks. I spoke with Brenda who used to be a licensed yoga instructor and she said the only thing that could lower her deadly cholesterol levels was the psyllium husks. She lowered her cholesterol 30 points in 30 days when she began taking it every day. And a helpful FYI, Metamucil has a pink lemonade product that tasted just like the real thing but has psyllium fiber mixed into it. It's really delicious and smooth and three glasses of it a day make up 100% of your daily fiber. Anyone with trouble getting all 7 grams of their daily fiber in should pick some up. It an easy, delicious way to lower your cholesterol.


So enough of my preaching, back to my interview. I asked Bill Weavers question, did she have a favorite ventricle. Brenda claims her left ventricle is nearest and dearest to her heart. I also asked Molly's question about how easy it is for actors to incorporate issues they hold dear into their storylines. She said that the producers of Desperate Housewives actually give the cast quite a bit of say in how they would like their character developed. The actresses play a big part in creating the storyline. I then asked which Desperate Housewife character did she think was at the biggest risk of heart disease. Brenda said the Gabrielle character because even though she has a healthy lifestyle, Hispanic women and minorities in generally have an increased risk of heart disease. I hope this doesn't mean that Gabrielle is going to keel over in next week's episode! And to end I asked Calidaho's question about why the cause was so important to her. She has personally battled high cholesterol and her grandmother suffered from it as well. She was very gracious and easy to talk to. Our time was up way too quickly.

So now for my favorite part - the name dropping. I went up to Dana Delany after the event and actually made quite a fool of myself by saying, "I'm a huge fan of your work" and shaking her hand while staring into her eyes until her body guard took her by the shoulder and lead her away. Also performing at the event (some of which I was able to talk with at the reception) were: Eva Longoria, Markie Post (the Night Court lady), comedian Kathleen Madigan, Stephen Collins, Alex Kapp Horner, Annalynne McCord, comedian Judy Gold, Cynthia Adler, Holland Taylor (who is so beautiful I couldn't stand it) and Jeffery Tambor.

Here are a few shots from the night. Liz and I took pictures of our feet as we walked down the red carpet. Sure, the photographers were busy getting pictures of all the real stars, but they'll be kicking themselves when they realize whose picture they forgot to get for the cover of US Weekly!


Molly, Calidaho and Bill, thanks for your great question ideas and I'll see you round the shop!

20 comments:

bill said...

i love the heart dress!

Hollywood said...

Thanks! I bought it the morning of just for the event. Nothing like overdoing a theme ;)

Carolyn said...

got any more pictures of the event? :-)

Nancy Sabina said...

You are definitely hot stuff now, baby!

Susan M said...

Awesome! That is really neat. I didn't know that about women's symptoms, good stuff to know.

sugar&spicecookies said...

are you and liz wearing the same shoes?

Hollywood said...

Metamucil is going to be emailing me some pics soon and Liz has some linked on her blog. I'll stick up more when I get them.

And yes, Liz and I turned out to be wearing almost the exact same style of dress and shoes. So much for originality - but at least I can say she's definitely my kind of gal!

Colleen said...

Wow, sounds like a cool event! I'm sure you blew them away with your wit and charm.

Hollywood said...

More like "I blew them away when I laughed so hard at the Metamucil reception that I inhaled a large chunk of chicken satay and almost died." But don't worry, I finally coughed it up after everyone was running around trying to save me and get water. Yeah, I'm that classy.

The Wiz said...

What are psyllium husks? And why do you get to do cool things? And do you want to buy my house?

Emmy said...

I knew heart disease was the number one killer of women but I did not know the symptoms. Thanks for informing us. Sounds like you had a spendid time. Since 1 out of 2 women die of heart disease, is it going to be me or you? LOL (Yeah I have a weird sense of humor)

Angela said...

congrats! you're a rock star.

Kate said...

It sounds like it went just great! Glad you learned so much and had such a fantastic time.

Kristin said...

It was a great night and I loved meeting you and the hubs... see you at Blogher (probably)!

LittlePaintedPolkaDots said...

Woot! Woot! Hollywood, what an awesome experience. I'm gonna live vicariously through you okay? Thanks!

Amanda said...

Wow. Amazing opportunity. You really are that cool.

Great write-up. Both informative and entertaining. But I do want to chime in that 7 grams of fiber per day can't possibly be enough. I have heard that for women it is your age plus five, until you reach 25 grams. For men it is until you reach 38. That is why nobody will ever reach their daily recommended dose without a little extra help. One more plug for that Metamucil lemonade!

Here's a link to some fiber stats:
http://www.carbs-information.com/dietary-fiber-daily-needs.htm

Amanda said...

ok. so that link didn't work. but if you google "recommended daily fiber intake" it will pop up first on the list.

Irishmama said...

Ugh, I wish I would have made a suggestion on the last post about asking her about her character on Seinfeld, Sue Ellen Mischke, "the braless wonder" and heiress to the Oh Henry candybar fortune. I bet she would have had a great answer....

Anyway, it sounds like you had a great time.

Mary said...

When I needed to get my cholesterol down, I stopped eating foods that contain cholesterol. That would be meat and animal products like eggs, milk, cheese, etc. No pills or supplements for me! It worked!!

lizriz said...

So nice to meet you and Kristin, and I have to tell you - I totally had just bought my dress, too! :)