Thursday, April 11, 2013

Top Tips for Women’s Health

Five Tips for Dietary Health

1) Alkalize. 

Remember high school chem, when you learned about the PH scale? Our bodies also exist in a balance between acidity and alkalinity. High acidity in the body has been linked to fatiguebione loss, and a host of other symptoms that we’d all rather avoid.

What acidifies our bodies? Alcohol, drugs, nicotine, and caffeine are big culprits. We also create lactic acid when we digest meat, dairy, and very high-protein foods. These foods, also known as high-PRAL foods, acidify our blood. The human body doesn’t like to be in an acidic state, and it works overtime to compensate. Our lungs, kidneys, and other organs try to “neutralize” acidity by a process called buffering; this means linking the acid to a “base” mineral. These include sodium, potassium, and calcium. There’s now substantial research to prove that high-PRAL foods (which are typically also high-protein foods) contribute directly to calcium loss and over-taxation of the kidneys. Why? Because our body is trying to neutralize blood acid by leaching calcium from bones and into the bloodstream.


The good news is that alkaline foods immediately help to stabilize and alkalize our bodies. What are alkaline foods? Well, they include vegetables, sprouts, low-sugar fruits, legumes, and certain grains (spelt, quinoa, and millet in particular). In other words, the foods that are a cornerstone of a plant-based diet! Which is all the more reason you should be eating as many veggies as possible. Dig in!

2) Eat for Your Bones

It’s no great secret that women are prone to bone density loss as we age. To prevent this, it’s important to eat as alkaline a diet as possible: again, eating too much animal protein, which is acidic, forces our bodies to deplete calcium reserves as a buffer. Ever wonder why countries with highest osteoperosis rates, ours included, are typically the countries with highest dairy consumption? This is why.

In addition, it’s important to eat calcium rich foods. Wondering about the best plant-based sources? Sesame seeds, spinach, collard greens, turnip greens, blackstrap molasses, kale, and tofu are all stellar. Most non-dairy milks and soy products are also fortified with calcium, as are many commercial vegan cereals.
If you have any reason to believe that you’re not getting adequate calcium from your diet, go ahead and seek out a good vegan supplement with Vitamin D3. Right now, I’m a big fan of Vitamin Code’s Raw Calcium.

3) Pump up the Iron

We ladies, I’m sorry to say, are also rather prone to anemia. It’s very common for young women to be anemic–symptoms include sensitivity to cold, brittle nails, fatigue, thinning hair, headaches, and depression. To prevent this, it’s crucial for us to eat enough iron.

Fortunately, a plant based diet is full of iron-rich foods! Black strap molasses is a terrific source: one tablespoon daily (try stirring it into raw or cooked oats) brings you halfway to your USDA requirement. Other sources include leafy greens – chard, kale, spinach — as well as edamame, lentils, spinach, tofu, sesame seeds, pumpkin seeds, and navy beans. Cooking with a cast iron pan imparts some iron, too.

4) Stop Fearing Fats

Women–especially women with histories of chronic dieting–tend to be pretty fat-phobic. Don’t be, ladies! I’ve written ad infinitum on the benefits of healthy fats, but just to remind you: healthy fats help our nerves, eyes, and immune systems. Our brain is composed of 60% fats, and our hearts are regulated by them. They’re known to help prevent cholesterol, and they’re especially important for fertility and fetal brain development.

The bottom line? Eat up! Be mindful of eating a sufficient amount of Omega-3 fatty acids, which can be found in chia seeds, walnut, flax, and pumpkin seeds, and monounsaturated fats, found in almonds, coconut, olives, walnuts, sunflower seeds, and avocados.

5) Ditch the Fad Detoxes

I cannot tell you how frequently I’m asked about “doing a detox.” Should I do a cleanse? Should I do a fast? Should I drink lemonade and lemon juice for sixteen days? Should I eat nothing but green smoothies for a week?

In a word: no. There is no reason for a healthy, average woman to drastically lower her caloric consumption with “cleanses”. In fact, there’s a good chance that whatever cleanse you’re interested in–juices, lemonade, all raw veggies, smoothies only, and the list goes on–will only leave you feeling deprived, strip you of water weight, and lower your metabolism. Even undertaking a radically low-cal diet is likely to lower your metabolism drastically, so that when you do return to normative habits (as you eventually will have to, because you’re human), you’ll be likely to gain weight quickly, and in the form of fat.

If you need to lose a few pounds, or you aren’t feeling your best and want to tune up, simply commit to a few small changes (less processed food, no diet sodas, no sugary desserts) that will help boost energy and let you shed fluff weight. That’s a few, not all: getting healthy doesn’t mean trying to be perfect. It means doing what’s optimal as often as is reasonable. Don’t set yourself up for yo-yo diets that can permanently destroy your metabolic function and digestion: opt instead for small, sustainable changes that will boost health for good.

Five Tips for Sexual Health

1) Be Proactive About Birth Control

Deciding whether or not to go on the pill is deeply personal, and it should be based upon lifestyle, on your dialog with your sexual partner, and on your own comfort level. The pill is a major source of security and freedom for many women, but many others experience negative side effects. Therefore, be proactive: there are proactive ways to prevent pregnancy without BCP (such as copper IUDs), and we have the power to explore them.

2) If You Are on the Pill…

Remember: birth control pills do NOT prevent STDs. Many of my readers grew up in the era of AIDS awareness. That’s terrific, but statistics show that condom use and preventative measures against STDs are dropping among white heterosexuals. HIV rates have dropped marginally, but not nearly enough to justify careless behavior. (No drop, save the eradication of all STDs, would justify carelessness.)
Ladies, if you are taking the pill, remember that it’s no barrier against STDs. Herpes rates are on the rise (some statistics suggest that one in every two single heterosexuals in New York City has the herpes virus), and chlymidia and HPV are as common as ever. If you’re feeling tempted to skip the rubber, or if your partner assumes that your being on the pill is a green light for riding bareback, stop dead in your tracks, and reach for the bedside drawer.


3) Remember Your Pap

Be sure to get a pap smear regularly. I previously thought it was necessary annually, but a few readers have mentioned that the new ones are good for 2-3 years at a time (ask your ob-gyn). These exams scan for any reproductive abnormalities, STDs, and cervical cell changes associated with HPV.

4) Get the HPV Vaccine

People in the raw and vegan communities have mixed feelings about vaccines. I fall on the pro side of the fence, though I do think it is every parent’s right to select which vaccines are administered to their children, and at what age.
Adult women, naturally, can also make up their own minds about the HPV vaccine. But it seems awfully foolhardy to forgo vaccination against a form of cancer (cervical cancer) that is essentially preventable–especially since so few forms are. And we’ll be protecting our future sexual partners in the meantime.

5) Get to Know Your Body

Do I sound like I’m hailing from the pages of Our Bodies, Ourselves? Maybe I do, but even so, this message bears repeating: a conscious sex life is a rewarding sex life. Even in this day and age, young women are afraid to explore their own bodies, and to share what they learn with partners. Don’t be! Get to know your bod: if that means the old self-examination with a mirror at home, go for it. If it means getting cozy with some erotic literature or visuals, go for it. If it means picking up a sex guide, like The Guide to Getting it On (a classic), do it. Do anything that puts you in touch with what you like, and what you don’t; what feels good, and what doesn’t. And when you figure it out, speak up! Your partner will appreciate a knowledgeable and proactive approach, and you’ll be grateful for it when he (or she) responds accordingly.

Five Tips for Mind, Body, and Soul

1) Move
It’s nothing you’ve never heard before, but gentle exercise–I’m talking 35 minutes at least three times weekly–is your friend. No, this doesn’t have to mean marathon training or torture sessions at the gym. It can mean brisk walking, yoga, zumba, pilates, rebounding, or simply dancing around your apartment to the newest Gaga single. Exercise will boost your mood, strengthen your heart, strengthen your bones, and keep energy levels high. What’s not to like?


2) …But Not Because You Like to Eat 

One of the most troubling habits I see among clients is the use of exercise as a means of feeling “safe” about food–to burn calories, feel less “lazy,” or ensure they won’t gain weight from eating.

Two weeks ago, I wrote about embracing our appetites. This means embracing the fact that we hunger simply because we must: hunger is part of being alive. Exercise is a beautiful thing, but it should be separate from hunger, and eating is not optional.

So move, ladies. But don’t move because you ate. Move because it makes you feel energetic, happy, or strong–not because you had a piece of cake. The more you do to dissociate fitness from food, the more you’ll be able to appreciate them both.

3) Remember Self Care

We ladies are often caretakers: we care for children, for parents, for each other. But in so doing, we also forget to take time to care for ourselves. No matter how cliched it may sound, it’s true that we cannot love or value for others until we love and value ourselves.

Carve out time for solitary walks, little beauty treatments, reading, music, catching up with friends, and other forms of self-focused activity. Be gentle and indulgent: if this means canceling a commitment once in a while, or saying no to someone, or taking break from work, do. Preserving your own sanity–which such habits help you to do–means more energy and focus when you do re-emerge to care for the people you love.

4) Don’t Feel Responsible for Other People’s Comfort

I’ve spoken before about a woman’s tendency to eat in such a way that pleases other people. Often, this is because we sense that our good food habits make other people feel insecure or ashamed, and we compensate with self-sabotage. Is there anything more backwards than this–treating our bodies poorly to make our friends or family members feel better about themselves? I don’t think so.


The habit extends beyond food: so often, we bite our tongues, soften our opinions, or shy away from conflict because we know that it will make other people more comfortable. Guess what, girls? Other people are responsible for their own happiness, security, and comfort. Be kind and generous to others, certainly, but don’t take blame for other people’s unhappiness unless you caused it through malice or poor behavior. You’ve got your own happiness to worry about: allaying other people’s private and often self-imposed unhappiness is not your job.

5) Embrace Independence

One of the more troubling tendencies I see in young women today is a feeling of discomfort with solitude–both physical (in that they fear having time alone on their hands) and existential (in that they fear a lack of male companionship). It’s normal, of course, to experience loneliness now and then, or to want to find partnership in life. But to fear one’s own company is, I think, a shame. Life is lived in the company of loved ones, but there’s also truth to the dictum that we live and die alone. At the least, the capacity to support oneself financially, to make one’s way through the world independently, and to amuse oneself in quiet moments, is crucial.

Sharing your life with wonderful people is vital. But it’s also vital to enjoy your own company. So the next time you find yourself striving to make yourself more appealing to others, stop for a moment, and think: how can I be more appealing to myself? Take some time to cultivate a sense of personhood that you enjoy and take pride in, and the pleasures of autonomy will follow.

Diet Tips for Women over 40

A healthy diet is important for women over 40. One reason is because women undergo hormonal changes on this age. Therefore, this is the age where every woman should be vigilant with their health.

The metabolism of a woman slows down at the age of 40. The fat distribution is focused on the midsection of your body. In order to address this predicament, a woman over 40 should shift their attitude towards diet.

There is one technique that women over 40 could take. Eat your carbohydrate in the morning. This is during your breakfast. This is the first meal of the day. It is also the most important meal. Your food in the morning will sustain you for your days’ work. Therefore, carbohydrate in the morning could actually help your body face the day’s challenges and task.

Evening is the time when we slow down.  This is the time when you can eat light. Go with fruits and vegetables. Eat foods high in fiber. Take salad for instance. This is light in the belly. Therefore, this will not add to the fat intake in your body.

Drink a lot of water. Make sure your system is properly hydrated. Adequate water intake can wash your toxins away from your body. Further, lots of water intake is always included in a good diet program.

Avoid foods that could significantly add to your calorie count like sugary drinks, sodas, cakes, fatty foods. These foods are not healthy. Worst, they could add up to the piling fats developing in you belly. Therefore, it should be a big NO.

Maintaining a balanced and healthy diet is very important. This is especially true when you are over 40. It is better to invest in your health rather than face the consequence of leading an unhealthy lifestyle

10 Tips for Healthy Living in Your 30s for Women

Most women in their 30s feel it is the best time in their lives, many women in their 30s also have multiple roles such as mom, cook, cleaner, bread winner plus many other roles.

Women in their 30s need to make sure they are pursuing healthy living and women will at times push their own needs aside to make sure other factors or areas in their lives are being taken of first.

Many women think of others first, especially moms tend to put everyone else as priority. Moms often have a hard day of working out of the home or in the home, taking care of the kids and all the tasks that are involved with being a mom and thinking about healthy living is the last thing from a mom's mind.

However, it is of the utmost importance for women in their 30s to maintain a healthy living lifestyle so that they can be in tip top shape to continue and keep up with their busy lifestyles and live their lives to the fullest.
Here you will find 10 tips for healthy living for women in their 30s, each tip is simple and easy but will really help to make life healthy and enjoyable.

Take Naps

Women especially moms are notorious for not getting enough sleep and lack of sleep is one of the leading causes of women not feeling and looking their best. Lack of sleep is very serious and can take years off of a life. Taking naps when there is that tiny bit of a break or when the kids take naps is a great way to get energized, rested and to maintain a healthy living.

Drink Water

The simple act of drinking water can seem to be the obvious, yet many women of all ages do not get enough of the minimal daily intake of water. Water helps to remove toxins in the body and helps to keep the skin looking healthy and radiant. It is very important for women of all ages to get enough water in their system to help the body functions to work properly, the skin to look and feel beautiful and to live a healthy lifestyle.

Daily Moisturizer

Women in their 30s need to replenish their skin daily with much needed moisturizer. Women in their 30s really need to be adamant about applying a daily moisturizer to help keep skin looking beautiful. A daily moisturizer with sunscreen is an added bonus.

Relax in a Bath

Relaxation is rare if not existent for women especially moms but the stress of daily women and mom life can really affect the way a women looks and feels. A small amount of daily relaxation is important for a woman to look and feel beautiful. Taking a bath is a wonderful way for a woman to get some much needed relaxation time in and to help with living healthy.

Wear Sunscreen

Sun damage causes premature aging of the skin and possible cancer, skin especially as it ages is susceptible to all types of environmental issues. It is important for woman to protect their skin when they are outside and use a daily sunscreen even when the sun is not shining.

Nightly Cleansing

Healthy living involves the skin, it is important to remove makeup nightly. Women especially in their 30s should make sure they wash their face nightly to get rid of make of any makeup residue and impurities. A clean, fresh face is an excellent way to keep the skin healthy and to keep the skin feeling beautiful.

Short Walks

Exercise is so important for women of all ages but especially for moms in their 30s. It is at times difficult for Moms to find the time to exercise but taking quick short walks alone or with the kids is a fantastic way to get the daily exercise in. Many women in their 30s say their body changes dramatically from when they were in their 20s so it is extremely important to maintain healthy living by exercising.


Smiling not only makes a woman look beautiful on the outside but it helps to make a woman feel beautiful on the inside. If you are a looking for a no cost way to feel positive, make sure to put a big smile on your face and get ready to show the world just what a beautiful woman you are.

Yearly Exam

Women in their 30s go through lots of change and a woman's body will not react the same as it did in younger years. It is essential that women go for their yearly exam and talk to their doctor about any concerns or questions they may have.

Eat Healthy

Women are typically on the go and when we are on the go it can be difficult at times to eat well. It is so important to eat healthy and maintain a balanced diet to continue with a healthy living lifestyle.

Women need to feel and look beautiful inside and outside their bodies, the tips highlighted here for women in their 30s will help to maintain or start a healthy living lifestyle. Women want to feel beautiful about themselves inside and out, living a healthy lifestyle is the first step.

Tips To Maintain Good Hair Hygiene

Do you want a stylish hair? Then get a new hair style. Try straightening, curling or colouring you hair for a makeover. But if you want to have healthy hair, then you should give prime importance to hygiene. Sebum produced by sebaceous glands in the hair follicles are beneficial as it keeps the hair healthy. However, excess production or accumulation of sebum is not desirable as it cause hair loss. We all worry about various hair problems, but with a habit of good hygiene, most of this can be solved. Healthy hair definitely has an important role in keeping your confidence level high. No matter how appealing you are, a bad odour from your hair is strong enough to make you feel embarrassed. Now stop worrying about your hair problems, and follow these simple steps to maintain a good hair hygiene. Washing your hair: It is the first and foremost need to keep your hair and scalp clean. Washing your hair and massaging your scalp will resolve most of your hair complaints. But it is important to select a mild shampoo which is formulated for your hair type.
Use conditioners: Frequent drying, colouring, straightening, and usage of chemical products can affect your hair health. Hair conditioners are usually helpful to maintain proper hair hygiene, as they will form a light layer over the hair and keep it protected.
Clean your scalp: Massaging your hair with warm oil will help to clean your scalp. Massaging will help remove dandruff or dirt from the scalp. Oil can act as a conditioner and will protect your hair from getting rough and dry. 
Remove excess oil: While applying oil is healthy for hair, keeping excess oil on hair without washing will affect the health of your hair. It will accelerate the accumulation of dirt on the scalp. Always remember to wash off the excess oil with a mild shampoo. 
Clean your hair accessories and tools: Washing your comb is very important to maintain hair hygiene. Do not share your comb. Clean your hair accessories like hair clips or hair bands. 
Do not use expired hair products: The composition of these can change over time which will eventually result in hair fall. To keep your hair and scalp hygienic and clean, use quality products only. 
Treat dandruff: Dandruff occurs mainly due to poor hygiene of your hair, which can further cause hair fall. Take necessary measures to resolve dandruff and treat hair fall. You can try natural remedies and if it is not working, consult a doctor. 
Wash off sweat: Washing your hair whenever sweaty is important to remove the dirt and dead skin of scalp which are accumulated due to sweat. Excessive sweating will cause bad odour as well. Keep hair clean and neat to maintain hygiene and reduce hair problems like hair fall and itching. 
Not loose, not tight: Keeping hair loose will settle dirt and dust. Loosened hair is more prone to hair splitting. Tying hair too tight may cause excess sweating. So, do tie your hair too tight or loose. 
During travel: Always keep a mini pack of oil, shampoo and conditioner with you if you are travelling for several days. Try to keep your hair oil free while travelling. Do not let sweat stay on scalp for a long time.
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Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Smoking Is Worse for Women

We've been bombarded with the "smoking is bad for you" message since we were in elementary school. But, new research shows that, for women, the risk is even greater: We've now surpassed men when it comes to smoking-related death rates. (Um, super scary.)

It used to be that men had a five-times higher risk of dying of lung cancer than women did. But recent cancer research by the University of California, San Francisco, shows that women who smoke are now actually even more likely than men who smoke to die of lung cancer. Not only that, but female smokers are nearly 18 times more likely to die of lung cancer than women who don't have a cigarette habit.

While many of us listened to the anti-smoking ads we constantly saw as kids (and aren't dealing with a two-pack-a-day habit like a lot of people from our parents' generation), social smoking—as in having a cigarette when you're out drinking—is pretty prevalent among young women. And, not to get all preachy on you, but, yes, it still "counts" as smoking. According to the University of Montana, this sorta-sporatic habit can even lead to a full-on addiction. Not good.

So, next time you're thinking about bumming a cigarette after last call as you wait to catch a cab, you may want to reach for your pack of gum instead. It's just not worth the risk.

Read more: More Women Die of Lung Cancer Than Men — Smoking Risks for Women - Cosmopolitan