a special feature from Debra Orringer*
While we all know that women’s bodies are different from men: to what extent do we truly understand how women can take unique preventive measures to live and strong and healthy life?
Here are 5 health conditions that affect women, and how you can take care of yourself. Most importantly be aware of your own self.
Stress affects all of us in varying degrees depending on circumstances, but in a survey conducted by the American Psychological Association, 50% of women are likely to report being stressed, compared to 39% of men. Stress is related to inflammation, high blood pressure, and a weakened immune system, and can be a pre-cursor to many more serious, health conditions. Take care to reduce stress now, before it becomes more severe! Get plenty of sleep, eat well, hydrate, address and remove the root cause of your stress. Let something go when you feel overwhelmed.
2. Osteoporosis and osteoarthritis
According to the National Osteoporosis Foundation, Osteoporosis affects 44 million Americans, 68% of which are women. Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis and is the leading cause of disability in the United States. To slow down or prevent the onset of these diseases, ensure a diet rich in a variety of vitamins and minerals, especially calcium and vitamin D. It also helps to have regular weight-bearing activity to keep core muscles and joints strong, and to maintain a healthy weight.
3. Urinary tract issues
Affecting women more often than men, things like urinary tract infections (UTI’s), incontinence, pelvic floor disorders, uterine fibroids, and related conditions can be uncomfortable, painful, and embarrassing. Prevent these by doing Kegel exercises regularly, urinating after intercourse, consuming adequate water and not holding your pee too long, and staying clean. Avoiding processed foods and consuming lots of leafy greens and organic foods will also help.
4. Autoimmune disease
About 75% of cases of autoimmune diseases occur in women, according to the American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association (AARDA). The include a very long list of diseases including lupus, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, and multiple sclerosis. More research is needed to understand what causes these diseases, but ultimately it comes down to the body attacking its own cells and tissues. Genetic, hormonal, and environmental factors are suspected contributors. Maintaining overall health and being vigilant about getting help are the best strategies for prevention, be especially determined if you have mysterious or persistent symptoms with no clear diagnosis.
5. Breast and cervical cancer
According to the World Health Organization’s latest global figures, around half a million women die from cervical cancer, and half a million more from breast cancer each year. Many of the deaths occur in low and middle-income countries with little screening, prevention, and treatments, and generally lower quality of health when it comes to nutrition and sanitation. To keep yourself healthy, maintain overall wellness, eat well, assess your family history, and get appropriate screenings as needed.
5 Issues on Women’s Health, is an exclusive feature for Grandparentslink.com by Debra Orringer.
*Debra Orringer, MS from Naples, FL, is an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach and a Clinical Exercise Physiologist with over 20 years in the industry. She has managed the wellness programs at the Kennedy Space Center as well as consulted for several national fitness companies, authored articles, and retains a myriad of advanced level certifications. Debra produces a nutritional blog weekly at www.DebraOrringer.com and can be reached at DebO@DebraOrringer.com “Being Healthy Doesn’t Have To Be Hard”