Posts made in August, 2013

Women’s Health

Posted by on Aug 9, 2013 in Health Topics | 0 comments

Women’s Health

Health Musts for Every Decade It’s never too soon—or too late—to take steps to protect your health. But, of course, the sooner you start, the healthier you’ll be. Here are the essentials to keep you on track in each decade of your life. In Your 20s: 1. Schedule annual physicals. You’re a grownup and no one is making you go for checkups regularly—so you need to take charge yourself. This is the time to find a primary care doc you like and trust, establish a relationship, and get checked out (ideally once a year), says Shantanu Nundy, MD, an internist at the University of Chicago Medical Center and author of the forthcoming book Stay Healthy at Every Age. Annual physicals are the best way to see where you stand and catch any emerging problems before they get out of hand. Your doctor should check your body mass index (BMI) and blood pressure as well as take blood to check your thyroid health and cholesterol levels. Read more: Women’s Health Tips by Decade at WomansDay.com – How to Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle – Woman’s Day In Your 30s: 1. Watch the scale. The pounds can creep on at any age, but many women in their 30s struggle with weight for the first time. Metabolism starts to slow around age 35, and if you’ve had kids you may find it difficult to shed those post-pregnancy pounds. Since you’re also juggling work and family, time is tight. That’s why Dehn suggests sneaking exercise into your schedule. “Women in their 30s have infinite to-do lists and they never have time for themselves,” says Dehn. “I often recommend a pedometer. Wearing one helps you set goals and see how those extra steps add up just from parking farther away from the grocery store and picking up after the kids.” She also suggests getting off the subway or bus 1 or 2 stops farther away and walking at least 1 or 2 flights of stairs each day if you work in an office. 2. Make sleep a priority. Busy moms may find themselves hard-pressed to get to bed early enough, but it really is essential to good health. If you’re currently pregnant, you may have sleep problems as well: According to the American Academy of Sleep Medicine, the physical, emotional and hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy—especially during the third trimester, when you’re physically your largest—can all interfere with sleep. Make sure your room is as comfy as possible and allow yourself ample time to wind down in the evening. Talk to your doctor if you’re still having trouble. 3. Pay attention to period problems. Regardless of whether or not you’ve had kids, let your doctor know if you’re suddenly having periods that are heavier or more painful. This could signal PCOS (polycystic ovary syndrome, a metabolic disorder), a thyroid problem or fibroids. 4. Check your blood pressure. If you’re getting annual physicals, your doctor should be checking this each time, but if not, make sure to get it tested at least once. A lot of women start to develop hypertension in their 30s—often tied to weight gain—but they don’t even realize it, says Dr. Nundy. Protect your heart now by staying informed. In Your 40s: 1. Opt in for mammograms. Yes, the conflicting guidelines are confusing, but most experts are still encouraging women to start yearly mammograms at age 40, rather than wait until 50. Your doctor can help you evaluate your personal and family medical history to figure out when you should start and how often you should get them (annually or biannually). 2. Find out about diabetes. If your doctor hasn’t already been screening...

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World Breastfeed Week 1 – 7 August

Posted by on Aug 1, 2013 in Health Topics | 0 comments

World Breastfeed Week 1 – 7 August

The first week in August is World Breastfeeding Week. It is a time for people around the world to promote and encourage breastfeeding. Breastfeeding Support: Close to Mothers is the theme for World Breastfeeding Week 2013. This theme focuses on the importance of all aspects of breastfeeding support. Having an annual commemorative week is worthwhile, but ensuring that mothers have the support they need to breastfeed successfully requires ongoing efforts. Breastfeeding is one of the most effective steps a mother can take to protect the health of her baby. Support for breastfeeding should be provided in all places, including early care and education (ECE) facilities (i.e., care centers, nursery schools, and family homes). Breastfeeding is the normal way of providing young infants with the nutrients they need for healthy growth and development. Virtually all mothers can breastfeed, provided they have accurate information, and the support of their family, the health care system and society at large. Colostrum, the yellowish, sticky breast milk produced at the end of pregnancy, is recommended by WHO as the perfect food for the newborn, and feeding should be initiated within the first hour after birth. Exclusive breastfeeding is recommended up to 6 months of age, with continued breastfeeding along with appropriate complementary foods up to two years of age or beyond. Breastfeeding is one of the most effective ways to ensure child health and survival. If every child was breastfed within an hour of birth, given only breast milk for their first six months of life, and continued breastfeeding up to the age of two years, about 220 000 child lives would be saved every year. Breastfeeding Exclusive breastfeeding for six months has many benefits for the infant and mother. Chief among these is protection against gastrointestinal infections which is observed not only in developing but also industrialized countries. Early initiation of breastfeeding, within one hour of birth, protects the newborn from acquiring infections and reduces newborn mortality. The risk of mortality due to diarrhoea and other infections can increase in infants who are either partially breastfed or not breastfed at all. Breast milk is also an important source of energy and nutrients in children aged 6 to 23 months. It can provide half or more of a child’s energy needs between the ages of 6 and 12 months, and one third of energy needs between 12 and 24 months. Breast milk is also a critical source of energy and nutrients during illness, and reduces mortality among children who are malnourished. Adults who were breastfed as babies are less likely to be overweight/obese. Children and adolescents that have been breastfed perform better in intelligence tests. Breastfeeding also contributes to the health and well-being of mothers; it reduces the risk of ovarian and breast cancer and helps space pregnancies–exclusive breastfeeding of babies under six months has a hormonal effect which often induces a lack of menstruation. This is a natural (though not fail-safe) method of birth control known as the Lactation Amenorrhoea Method. Complementary feeding Around the age of six months, an infant’s need for energy and nutrients starts to exceed what is provided by breast milk, and complementary foods are necessary to meet those needs. An infant of this age is also developmentally ready for other foods. If complementary foods are not introduced when a child has reached six months, or if they are given inappropriately, an infant’s growth may falter Source: www.cdc.com...

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