Rosie O'Donnell is using her recent battle with heart disease to turn around her health - and hopefully inspire millions of other women to do the same. 

 

The 50-year-old comedian, who suffered a near-fatal heart attack in August, has successfully dropped 12 pounds since adopting a plant based diet. In an interview with People Magazine, she says her overall health is better than ever. 

 

“I had a really sedentary lifestyle and that’s deadly,” she says. “It took a heart attack for me to learn to take care of myself… Now I feel like I’ve been given a second chance at life.”

 

O’Donnell added that she used to feel tired and sluggish but now feels ”full, but lighter, and I have more energy.”

 

This past Sunday (Sept. 30), Rosie revealed that she is taking her new outlook on life to "The Dr. Oz Show" in an effort to raise awareness on the serious threat from heart disease facing women. 

 

“heart disease kills more women than men,” she wrote on her blog. “233,00 a year. every 20 seconds a woman has a heart attack in america. 50% of deaths happen in the first hour.”

 

In addition, Rosie will also address her wife's fight with desmoid tumors - and the charity work they're both doing to help find a cure. Though the episode airs on October 8th, some in the audience during the taping are already praising O'Donnell for sharing her experiences. 

 

"Great Job at the taping today for @DrOz," tweeted Leisha Tedford. "Your honesty will help save #women 's lives!"

 

To read more about Rosie O'Donnell's effort to raise awareness on heart disease, visit her personal blog here

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