Dis­ease gets younger vic­tims

Matamata Chronicle - - News - By NICKI DAVIDSON

Ev­ery day 16 New Zealan­ders die as a re­sult of heart dis­ease, mak­ing it the sin­gle biggest cause of death for men and women in this coun­try.

Mon­day, Fe­bru­ary 7 is the start of Na­tional Heart week and Mata­mata Heart Fit co-or­di­na­tor Char­maine Don­ald­son said the Heart Foun­da­tion’s aim to raise money for re­search and ed­u­ca­tion was crit­i­cal.

‘‘Heart at­tack vic­tims are get­ting younger and younger. One time it was just older peo­ple; 50 was young for a heart at­tack but now its not,’’ she said.

‘‘Age does not ex­clude you. It’s about pro­mot­ing the ben­e­fits of keep­ing an eye on your­self no mat­ter how old you are.’’

Last year Mata­mata was one of the best col­lec­tion ar­eas in the Waikato and Mrs Don­ald­son hopes for a sim­i­lar level of sup- port this year. ‘‘Our Heart Fit mem­bers will be out­side The Ware­house, Count­down and Unichem on Mon­day, Wed­nes­day and Fri­day, plus there will be rov­ing col­lec­tors on Fri­day.’’

The na­tional ap­peal runs for one week but in Mata­mata it will be two with many cafes and restau­rants of­fer­ing healthy heart op­tions.

‘‘Diet and ex­er­cise, and not smok­ing, they are all so im­por­tant. In for­mer times we didn’t know so much but nowa­days there is no ex­cuse, there is so much in­for­ma­tion out there.’’ Mrs Don­ald­son said.

Red bal­loons and dif­fer­ent sized hearts with the mes­sage ‘‘love your heart’’ went up around town yes­ter­day.

Train en­thu­si­asts wanted: Mata­mata Rail­way Mod­ellers sec­re­tary John Tarry and pres­i­dent Don Maskell are hop­ing for more mem­bers for their group.

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