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Bellamy Young On Her High Blood Pressure Diagnosis and The Wellness Practice That Has Been ‘Most Influential’

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While you most likely know her from her role as Mellie on the iconic ABC series Scandal, there is a lot more to Bellamy Young than meets the eye. While the 53-year-old actress has made a name for herself throughout her slew of dramatic, on-screen roles, she’s also making strides in the world of heart-health awareness, as she took part in this year’s American Heart Association’s Go Red for Women Red Dress Collection event.

While she strutted her stuff in a floor-length red gown and effortlessly swooped back hair, I had the opportunity to chat with Prodigal Son star about her connection to the cardiovascular health initiative, and got the inside scoop on how her own health journey has led her to some serious self-care revelations.

What does the American Heart Association’s Red Dress initiative mean to you? Is there a personal connection?

“First off all, bless their hearts, the American Heart Association has been making innovations and saving lives for 100 years, which is so amazing. This event is particularly amazing because it’s for women. There are so many things like dosages and symptomatology and that are very different on a woman’s body, and because all the medical models were men for so long, we’re just starting to really understand the salient points of that. As women, though, we find out these things first from each other, by sharing experiences and spreading knowledge, and that’s why Go Red for Women is so important.

Recently, I was diagnosed with high blood pressure, too. My mom also passed away recently, and the doctors said it was because of grief, and I had no idea that an emotion could impact my physical well being that much. So I’ve really been committing myself to being on the road to getting my blood pressure down and taking care of myself physically and mentally. I’ve realized now that things like meditation and breath work, things that I thought were in the spiritual realm, are very much anchored in the physical realm.”

Have you picked up any habits throughout your journey to lower your blood pressure that have really emphasized the importance of the mind-body connection?

“It’s truly incredible the effects that breath work can have. Any sort of mindful breathing is amazing for the heart and the body. There’s an app I use called HeartMath, too, that helps track your heart rhythms and guide your breathing and that has really been the most influential practice for me.”

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