What is Particular About Women’s Health and Fitness?

Eat well, exercise regularly and avoid high-risk behaviors such as smoking, excessive drinking and unnecessary drug use. This is common sense that applies to virtually everyone. In other words, practice Active Wellness.

What is particular to women’s health and fitness? Women’s health includes a range of specialties, such as birth control and gynecology, breast, ovarian, uterine and cervical cancers, menopause and hormone therapy, osteoporosis, pregnancy and childbirth, heart disease specific to women and more.1

Breast cancer is one of the most common types of cancer in women. If you have a family or personal history of breast cancer, your risk for developing this condition is higher. The United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends that women of average risk have a mammogram screening every two years between the ages of 50 and 74. They also recommend for women with an average risk of developing breast cancer to have their first screening in their 40s. Many doctors and medical groups recommend yearly mammograms starting at age 40. If you have a family history of breast cancer, your doctor may recommend you start earlier. These medical professionals also encourage women to conduct self-exams on a monthly basis starting at age 20.

Health practitioners generally advise women to get a Pap test to check for cervical cancer every three years when 21 or older. Between 30-65, women can get both a Pap test and HPV test every five years. Women older than 65 may be able to stop testing if the doctor determines you are low risk.2

Heart disease is the leading cause of death among American women, and women are more likely than men to die following a heart attack. Women are known to exhibit symptoms leading up to a heart attack that are less well known than men—often this results in ignoring the symptoms until it’s too late. As with men, women’s most common heart attack symptom is chest pain or discomfort. But women are somewhat more likely than men to experience some of the other common symptoms, particularly shortness of breath, nausea/vomiting and back or jaw pain.3 In fact, women may experience a heart attack without chest pressure—instead, they may feel a shortness of breath, pain in the abdomen, dizziness, lightheadedness or fainting, upper back pressure or extreme fatigue.4 A heart attack can be misconstrued as acid reflux, the flu or normal discomforts related to aging.

Men and women share many of the same risk factors for stroke, including high blood pressure and high cholesterol. However, women have several unique risk factors that make them more likely to have a stroke than men. Risk increases with the use of birth control pills, pregnancy and hormone replacement therapy.5 A healthy Mediterranean diet and a consistent exercise regimen are preventative measures. Choose supplementation with Kenzen Bergisterol® and Kenzen® Omega Green+DHA to help support heart health.

Women also are more at risk than men for developing osteoporosis, due to their tendency to have smaller, thinner bones. Estrogen, a hormone in women that protects bones, decreases sharply when women reach menopause, which can cause bone loss. Of the estimated 10 million Americans with osteoporosis, about 80% are women, and a woman’s risk of breaking a hip is equal to her combined risk of breast, uterine and ovarian cancer.6 The good news is that osteoporosis can be prevented—denser, stronger bones can be built by getting enough calcium and vitamin D, exercise and practicing Active Wellness. The key is to start early in life, from childhood through the teen years and onward. The Kenzen® Bone Health Pack with Kenzen® Calcium Complex and Kenzen® BDZ is exceptional. Partner products deliver naturally sourced calcium and minerals complemented by a formula that actively binds calcium to the bone matrix.*

Look for other aspects of women’s health and fitness in future blogs. For now, remember to eat well, exercise consistently, get regular physicals with your health practitioners and keep your bones strong!

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. These products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

1 https://medlineplus.gov/ency/article/007458.htm

2 https://www.webmd.com/women/features/women-top-health-tips#1

3, 4 https://www.heart.org/en/health-topics/heart-attack/warning-signs-of-a-heart-attack/heart-attack-symptoms-in-women

5 https://www.healthline.com/health/womens-health#breasts

6 https://www.nof.org/preventing-fractures/general-facts/what-women-need-to-know/

 

Do You Know Your HDL and LDL Numbers?

September is National Cholesterol Education Month in the United States, so it’s an appropriate time of year to get updated with the facts. Research is ongoing in this particular area related to heart health, especially since high cholesterol is a major risk factor for heart disease and stroke.

High cholesterol usually doesn’t have any symptoms. As a result, many people do not know that their cholesterol levels are too high. However, doctors can do a simple blood test to check your cholesterol—it’s called a lipoprotein profile and can measure your total cholesterol levels, including LDL (low-density lipoprotein, or “bad” cholesterol), HDL (high-density lipoprotein, or “good” cholesterol), and triglycerides. The National Cholesterol Education Program (NCEP) recommends that adults aged 20 years or older have their cholesterol checked every five years.

In the United States, more than one-fifth (20%) of youth aged 12–19 years have at least one abnormal lipid level.1 Risk increases for children two or older through their teen years if they are overweight, have a family history of high cholesterol, or a family history of heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, or certain chronic conditions, such as kidney disease, inflammatory diseases, congenital heart disease, and childhood cancer survivorship.2

High cholesterol can be controlled through lifestyle changes but if practicing Active Wellness is not enough, physicians frequently prescribe medications known as statins. Side effects vary depending upon the individual.

Lowering cholesterol naturally takes discipline and commitment. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention focus on improving the diet to combat high cholesterol:

  • Limit foods high in saturated fat. Saturated fats come from animal products (such as cheese, fatty meats, and dairy desserts) and tropical oils. Foods that are higher in saturated fat may be high in cholesterol.
  • Choose foods that are low in saturated fat, trans fat, sodium (salt), and added sugars, such as lean meats, seafood, fat-free or low-fat milk, cheese, and yogurt, whole grains, and fruits and vegetables.
  • Eat foods naturally high in fiber, such as oatmeal and beans (black, pinto, kidney, lima, and others) and unsaturated fats, which can be found in avocado, vegetable oils like olive oil and nuts. These foods may help prevent and manage high levels of low-density lipoprotein cholesterol and triglycerides while increasing high-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels.

When it comes to naturally lowering cholesterol, the partner to a healthy diet is exercise. The Surgeon General recommends two hours and 30 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise, such as brisk walking or bicycling, every week—or one hour and 15 minutes of vigorous activity. Children and adolescents should get one hour or more of physical activity every day.3

Another alternative to statins that may work well with an Active Wellness lifestyle is taking a nutritional supplement made with bergamot fruit. The National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) has published various studies and multiple clinical trials with bergamot. To summarize their findings, bergamot has been found to contain a variety of phytochemicals—otherwise known as biologically active compounds—that are known to be beneficial in helping to reduce total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol in patients with levels that are higher than what is widely considered by researchers and physicians to be within a healthy range.4 Bergamot therefore continues to be studied as an alternative to statins which are known to have a variety of uncomfortable side effects.

Now in capsule form, Kenzen Bergisterol® 60 is a unique organic formulation made with Citrus bergamia Risso, an exclusive strain of the bergamot fruit and blended with vitamin C in the form of organic amla, colloquially known as Indian Gooseberry,

indian-gooseberry-337445_640
Indian Gooseberry

a known source of polyphenols and bioflavonoids.

1,2 https://www.cdc.gov/cholesterol/cholesterol_education_month.htm

3https://www.cdc.gov/cholesterol/prevention.htm

4https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6497409/