Tag Archives: Women’s Health

We Can’t Blame Our Metabolism For Weight Gain As We Get Older.

It’s always been assumed that as we start to approach our 30’s and 40’s our metabolism slows down and we gain weight a lot quicker. Well, science has now proven that to be untrue. Our metabolism hardy changes in the speed it works. It’s our speed that changes, as in the fact we become less active as we get older.

Our metabolism works by the rate it burns off calories as we go about our activities. It also works when we are resting as well. However, our metabolic rate and the speed it works at is determined by our height, sex and the genes we got from our parents.

There are also many myths that certain things can speed the metabolism up. But they are just that, myths. The effects that green tea, spicy food and caffeine laden drinks may slightly speed up your metabolism but nowhere near enough to make a change to your weight. The only thing that will speed up your metabolism and burn calories is activity.

This is depressing, right? Not necessarily, because forewarned is forearmed, so now we know why we are more susceptible to weight gain as we creep towards our 30’s we can put a plan into action and combat it.

Get Active

There are many simple things you can do during your daily routine to get more active. For example, take the stairs instead of the lift, walk to work instead of driving or taking the bus, power walk instead of strolling. After a vigorous workout when the heart gets pumping and your body temperature increases your metabolic rate will continue working faster even when you have finished exercising. It does not work at this faster rate while you are sat down resting, so, exercise first, then rest, knowing your metabolism is still burning off calories while you are chilling out in front of the TV.

Watch What You Eat

This might sound a bit obvious, but you should only eat what the body requires, not more. Some tips are to only eat when you are hungry, eat smaller portions but eat often and eat a balanced healthy diet. By reducing portion sizes and only eating when you are hungry plus engaging in activity of some kind will all help ward off weight gain as we get older.

6 Reasons Your Period Can Be Late (That Definitely Don’t Mean You’re Pregnant)

Periods are pretty crazy. I think most of us (besides those women who really, really hope that they don’t get knocked up) pretty much hate them. Sure, they serve a good purpose, but when you’re totally out of commission for an entire week at a time (with pain that’s scientifically proven to be just as bad as a heart attack), it’s really hard to remember these good things.

Especially since, if you only sleep with women, you’re pretty sure that you’re not pregnant.

(I think we’ve all had those what-if-I’m-the-next-virgin-Mary thoughts sometimes, though.)

Unfortunately, even if you’re definitely not pregnant, your period might be a little unpredictable sometimes. Here are 6 reasons why your period can be late, without being pregnant. If you’re really concerned, take a pregnancy test just to be sure – but the odds of getting pregnant without having heterosexual unprotected sex are incredibly low.

1. You’re relying on your memory, instead of actual tracking.

For the longest time, I really thought that my period was super irregular. Of course, I never actually paid attention to when I had my period – I just knew that it had been a long time since the last time I had one, and as a super paranoid teenager, I was of course convinced that I had somehow gotten pregnant from a toilet seat.

Let me reiterate: Getting pregnant, without having unprotected heterosexual sex, is really, really unlikely.

If you don’t actually pay attention to when you have your period, and instead rely solely on your memory for how long it’s been, I urge you to start keeping track. It doesn’t have to be anything super formal – I used to have “PS” and “PE” written on my calendar. (That would be “period start” and “period end”, if you couldn’t figure that one out.) I know people who add a grumpy-face emoji into their digital calendar. This way is great, because anyone with a smartphone has a digital calendar, even if you don’t currently use it.

For those who actually do want a more formal way to track it, there are a number of period-tracking apps available for iPhone, Android, and Windows Phone. Some apps even give you a push notification a few days before you should expect your period, if you’ve been tracking for more than a month or two. Tracking is super important, not only so you can plan when not to wear white, but also so that you have a log to show your doctor when he or she asks. It can also help alert you when there might be a bigger problem in play. If you’re not already tracking, please start tracking your periods.

2. Irregular cycles are actually pretty normal.

I know we’ve pretty much all grown up hearing that your cycle is 28 days long. While this is a great guideline, it’s also not exactly true. The average cycle lasts about 28 days, but cycles from 21-32 days are completely normal. It takes a few months of tracking to figure out what your normal cycle is, and it can be pretty hard if you’re a bit irregular, too.

But what if your cycle is longer than 32 days, or shorter than 21 days? Well, that’s not exactly uncommon either. Everyone is different, and there are so many factors that go into when you get your period, it’s sometimes pretty tough to estimate when you should be getting it – especially if you’ve only ever heard that whole “28 days” thing. You shouldn’t stress too much if your cycle doesn’t fit up to the normal time frame. That’s only an estimate.

It’s important to note that it’s also normal for your cycle to be totally unpredictable, especially if you’re under 21 or over 45. When you’re younger, your body still has to find the rhythm that works best for you. (We’ve already discussed that there are so many factors in play here.) If your periods are irregular and you’re definitely not within that younger, body-is-still-learning age group, there’s a chance it means you’re approaching menopause – which is, also, a completely normal part of life.

3. If you’re stressing too much, your period can get all screwed up in the mix.

Stress is a completely normal part of life, too, but with too much stress comes the inevitable health consequences. One of the most readily-identifiable problems it can cause is an unpredictable period schedule. For women who might be pregnant, and really don’t want to be, this can cause a cycle (no pun intended) of weird periods and more stress.

You see, your period is a way for your uterus to “clean house”, so to speak. Your ovaries release an egg, in anticipation of that egg being fertilized. If a certain amount of time (which, again, is different for everyone) passes, and you haven’t gotten pregnant, your ovaries basically flood the place in a fit of rage. When you’re too stressed out, though, your body takes a different approach.

Too much stress pushes your brain to tell your ovaries that you are not emotionally ready to have a child right now (ain’t that the truth) and, in turn, your ovaries don’t release an egg. Since there’s no baby being prepared for in there, there’s nothing to flood back out. Your body just needs a little time for itself right now, so work on managing your stress, and your period should be back on track before too much longer.

4. Illness and injury can screw things up, too.

I probably don’t need to tell you that your period takes a lot out of your body. It’s not really in your body’s best interest to ovulate when you’ve got too much other stuff going on, so many women just don’t ovulate when they’ve got too much going on. Of course, it would be great if we had better (conscious) control over when we got our period – no more bloody wedding nights or unplanned midnight trips to the feminine hygiene aisle – but at least we have the satisfaction of knowing that mother nature is actually looking out for you.

Honestly, injury and illness usually take up a lot more of your body’s resources than we give them credit for, but the underlying cause of your symptoms is almost always the healing process. (Obviously, if you break a bone, the actual breaking is going to hurt more than the healing, but that’s not the case with all injuries.) And, since most of these illness-and-injury-fixing processes take the same resources as getting our period would take, our body chooses to heal us instead of bringing on another problem.

Good lookin’ out, uterus.

5. Certain medications can play a role, too.

Anyone who’s ever been on chemical or hormonal birth control for any reason other than actual birth control will know this all too well: It affects your cycle. Like, a lot. It’s almost funny how this happens even when it’s prescribed to regulate your period, but honestly, any time you throw pregnancy hormones into your body “just because”, it’s going to mess things up.

But it’s not just birth control that can cause these problems. When you first start taking a new medication, it can put a lot of undue stress on your body. The affects are different for everyone, and different medications will affect it in different ways, but it’s usually nothing to be concerned with.

That being said, if you have completely skipped a period since taking your new meds, and it wasn’t prescribed specifically to give you fewer periods, you should schedule an appointment with your doctor. Remember, your period actually serves a valuable purpose, even if it doesn’t feel like it. This is why paying attention is so important – you need to pay attention in order to know when you should be concerned.

6. Losing or gaining a significant amount of weight can alter your cycle.

Pretty much any time your body goes through significant changes, there’s a good chance it’ll affect your period. Your weight, in particular, plays a huge part in determining your cycle. If you’ve recently gained or lost some weight, more than the normal fluctuations, your period could become late or non-existent. That’s because your body’s first priority is self-preservation, and it doesn’t want you to get pregnant if your weight is bouncing around all over the place – that’s not healthy, and it wouldn’t be healthy to the (hypothetical) baby.

How much weight is considered “significant”? That’s going to vary based on your own body, and how quickly the weight was lost or gained. There is no exact number for everyone, but there is a general guideline: If you see or feel a difference in your weight or build, regardless of whether it’s reflected on the scale or not, it’s significant enough to make a difference.

If you must gain (or lose) weight in order to be healthier, it’s important that you do so gradually. Not only is it less stressful on the body that way, it’s also more sustainable. It’s easier to keep up with 1% change than it is to hit your goals right away, and then push yourself to maintain right away. (Also, let me tell you, from someone who lost almost half my body weight within a year, it’s nearly impossible to do so in a healthy way. Please don’t cause yourself unnecessary extra health problems in the name of weight management.)

These 9 Medical Tests Are Crucial For All Women

In the words of Tammy Wynette ‘sometimes it’s hard to be a woman’ and aint that so true?

Not only do we have so many emotional complexities to deal with, but our bodies are quite unique as well. So we owe it to ourselves to keep our bodies in tip top condition.

Here is a list of the 9 most important medical tests all women should have.

Cervical Cancer Screening

This test is to check against human papillomavirus, or HPV and all women between the ages of 21 to 65 should have it done. We should have the test every 3 to 5 years and the test will look for cell changes in your body that could indicate cancer, so make sure you have yours done regularly.

Colorectal Cancer Screening

This is a colonoscopy which isn’t the most pleasant of tests to have carried out, however it saves 100’s of lives a year. Women aged between 50 to 75 should have it done every 10 years and the test will look for colon cancer and tumours. If caught early the survival rate is very good.

Breast Cancer Screening

This test is often called a mammogram and should be carried out on women aged 50 – 74. Some women if they have a history of breast cancer in the family have the test earlier. It should be carried out yearly and can detect even the very early stages of breast cancer. We love our boobs girls, so we need to look after them.

Blood Pressure Test

This test measures your blood flowing through your veins. All adults over the age of 18 should have the test done yearly as high blood pressure can be an indication you are at risk from heart disease or a stroke. It’s easily treated with medication and is important you have the test done as high blood pressure can go undetected for a long time before symptoms start to show.

Lipid Panel Test

This test is often called a cholesterol test as it checks the cholesterol levels or ‘fat’ in the blood. Women over the age of 45 should have the test done and it should be carried out yearly. High Cholesterol levels can cause heart attacks, heart disease and strokes. It is very easily managed through medication and it is vital to have it checked out.

Hepatitis C Test

Hepatitis is far more common than we realise. It can occur because of blood transfusions that contained contaminated blood. It is recommended that women born between 1945 and 1965 have the test done. The test only needs to be done once. Hepatitis C can cause liver disease and liver failure if left untreated.

Blood Glucose Testing

This test is carried out to check the amount of glucose in your blood which can indicate diabetes. Maintaining the correct balance of sugar in our bodies is really important.  Woman aged from 40 – 70 should have the test carried out yearly.

Osteoporosis Screening

This is a bone density test that looks to see if your bones are at risk from fractures or you may be at risk from declining mobility. Women over the age of 65 should have the test done and if they are not at high risk it only needs to be carried out once every 10 years.  Osteoporosis is treated in a variety of different ways so early detection in low bone mass is important.

Many of these tests can be carried out during a yearly medical so you can have many of them done at the same time.

Don’t ever take chances with your health, and if you are worried about any symptoms you may have go to see your GP right away.

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New Breast Cancer Treatment Claims To Wipe Out Tumours In 11 Days

According to new reports, a breakthrough new treatment for breast cancer has been shown to wipe out tumours in as little as 11 days.

Doctors working on the trial have described the results as “staggering,” and claim a new, two-pronged approach could pave the way for unprecedented breast cancer treatment options.

The discovery was announced at the European Breast Cancer Conference in Amsterdam, with the UK team of doctors saying the fast-acting treatment could spare thousands of women from intensive chemotherapy sessions.

The 257 participants in the study were all women newly diagnosed with an aggressive stage of breast cancer.

Trials were carried out at 23 participating hospitals around the UK, with doctors prescribed a combination of two existing drugs, Tyverb and Herceptin, as soon as the women were diagnosed.

However, by the end of the trial, 87% of patients showed improvement thanks to the treatment, while 17% of the tumours shrunk considerably, and 11% had disappeared altogether.

The leader of the study, Professor Nigel Bundred, a cancer surgeon in Manchester, said,

For solid tumours to disappear in 11 days is unheard of. These are mind-boggling results.”

While this clearly marks a major breakthrough in breast cancer treatment, Dr. Bundred expressed he wants to stay cautious before it’s been proven.

These results are so staggering that we will have to run another trial to prove that they are generalisable. But it is clear what has happened – we are pretty certain that we are not only getting tumour disappearance – we are getting an immune response as well.

Now that sounds like something we can all get excited about.

The World Is Officially Doomed: Researchers Conclude Cunnilingus Increases Your Chances Of Developing Cancer

Regularly performing oral sex reportedly increases the likelihood of contracting several types of cancer by way of a common virus.

According to new reports, oral sex has been linked with human papillomavirus (HPV), which typically causes no harm.

However, in rare instances, HPV can lead to cancer due to the changes it triggers in infected cells.

Found in the penis, vagina, mouth and anus, the extremely common virus spreads by skin-to-skin contact in addition to sexual intercourse.

Oral sex is believed to be the primary way HPV enters the mouth.

In a recent study conducted at New York’s Albert Einstein College of Medicine, researchers collected mouthwash samples from nearly 97,000 healthy people.

After four years, they found participants who were carrying HPV in their mouths were up to 22 times more likely to develop a tumour than those without HPV.

Researchers linked HPV to head and neck cancers, which were contracted by 132 participants.

Dr. Ilir Agalliu of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine reportedly said,

This study also showed using easily collected oral samples may help in predicting people’s risk for developing head and neck cancers.

Men and gay women are apparently have a higher chance of developing throat cancer because diseases are more easily contracted via cunnilingus as opposed to fellatio.

Be sure to read: Lesbian Safe Sex: How Much Do You Know?

Previous research also suggested smoking and drinking may increase the risk of HPV transmission.

Mouth and throat cancers reportedly affect approximately half a million people per year and kill about 150,000.

The Albert Einstein College of Medicine study was originally published in JAMA Oncology.

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According To New Research, Unprotected Oral Sex ‘To Overtake Smoking’ As The Main Cause Of Mouth Cancer

According to online health clinic Euroclinix, an infection transferred during oral sex could overtake smoking as the main cause of mouth cancer.

While smoking, excessive alcohol consumption and chewing tobacco were once the primary risk factors for mouth cancer, recent years have seen an increase in cases caused by HPV, or the human papillomavirus.

HPV can be contracted through unprotected genital, anal or oral sex and affects the skin around the mouth, rectum, cervix and throat.


Shockingly, the HPV virus now accounts for 25% of all mouth cancers globally and 35% of throat cancers.

This compares to only two thirds attributed to smoking – though it is difficult to quantify the effect precisely, due to the testing methods available and the other risk factors involved.

As outlined by the NHS, detecting HPV cells in a patient with oral cancer does not mean HPV caused the cancer.

The virus becomes part of the genetic material of the cancer cells, triggering their growth.

Though the claim that somehow HPV will overtake smoking as the main cause is questioned by some. There are hundreds of HPV strains, most of which do not lead to cancer, but there are around 15 strains which are associated with cancer.

Talking to Metro.co.uk, Fiona Osgun, Cancer Research UK’s health information officer said

Smoking is linked to about 65 per cent of mouth cancers in the UK, whereas only 8 to 14 per cent of cases are thought to be linked to HPV. Around 90 per cent of mouth cancer cases are preventable – things like staying smokefree, cutting down on alcohol and making sure you get your 5-a-day can all help reduce the risk.”

And, according to Euroclinix data, the number of men and women contracting HPV is increasing.

To help prevent contracting HPV during oral sex, the NHS advises women to place a latex square or dental dam over their genitals.

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Science Says Red Wine Can Actually Help You Lose Weight

It’s the news many of us have been waiting for – red wine can help you lose weight.

Yes, my dear, drunk friends, you read that correctly.


According to recent research, the resveratrol (an antioxidant) found in your favourite red can help turn bad “yellow” fat to healthy “brown” fat; the latter helps burn off the former.

Of course this ingredient, can be ingested without downing the claret. The compound is also found in blueberries, strawberries, raspberries, and apples.

In a study conducted by researchers at Washington State University, mice were fed high-fat diets and split into two groups: one was given resveratrol and the other wasn’t.

The researchers found the group of mice given resveratrol gained about 40 percent less weight than the other group over the course of the study.

Lead researcher Professor Min Du explained,

Polyphenols in fruit, including resveratrol, increase gene expression that enhances the oxidation of dietary fats so the body won’t be overloaded.

They convert white fat into beige fat which burns lipids (fats) off as heat, helping to keep the body in balance and prevent obesity and metabolic dysfunction

Of course, red wine is pretty caloric, and you’re probably better off getting your antioxidants from low-calorie fruit, such as blueberries, raspberries or even apples.

We think it’s time to celebrate, and now you can crack open a bottle of wine (enjoyed responsibly) and have a solid excuse to skip the gym today.


Lesbians Have A Higher Risk Of Cervical Cancer Than Straight Women Because Of Misinformed Doctors

Although it only affects around 7.8 women out of 100,000 (in the United States), cervical cancer, like all forms of the disease, is a terrifying prospect. It’s why women are encouraged to get regular screenings for the human papillomavirus (HPV) as that is the common cause of cervical cancer. Most women go for pap smears (the test that looks for HPV) once every three years.

However, in a shocking study published by the University of Washington School of Nursing in January, it seems that these routine tests are not doing enough for lesbian women and that actions by doctors greatly increase the risk of lesbians contracting the disease in comparison to their straight peers. The findings are shocking and suggest that the way doctors think about cervical cancer must change – quickly.

The study explains that one of the biggest reasons why lesbians are at great risk is because doctors don’t understand the disease well enough. HPV is usually transmitted via heterosexual sex (when both partners are cisgendered) and so if the patient is a lesbian, many doctors assume that they won’t need a screening. Of course not only can HPV be transmitted via other forms of sex (including via oral or genital contact and intercourse with toys) but 77% of lesbians have slept with men and so all round, lesbians are just as much risk as heterosexual women.

This misinformation also trickles down to the patients themselves who don’t know that they need to go for regular screenings as they too believe that HPV is only transmitted via intercourse with (cis) men. And on top of that, many lesbians are reluctant to attend screenings or even see a doctor regularly due to fear of discrimination – possibly fuelled by poor experiences in the past.

The University of Washington’s associate professor of biobehavioral nursing and health systems, Joachim Voss has detailed one simple way of making treatment more inclusive to lesbians:

“If we are serious about reducing the rates of cervical cancer in lesbians, an unbiased health assessment by a provider must ask the question: ‘Do you have sex with men, women or both?’”

He says that a focus on the sexual practices rather than the sexual orientation (and the label) will put patients at ease and that healthcare providers will who make it known that they are knowledgeable about same-sex practices can make things less awkward and “allow lesbians to receive sexual orientation-specific preventative measures and judgment-free treatments.”

Raising Awareness for Breast Cancer Awareness Month – #breastcancerawareness

Most of you know that breast cancer is a potentially deadly disease and the second leading cause of death among women. However, many people remain ignorant of some of the most basic self-inspection techniques that can help women detect their cancer early on, when it’s easier to beat.

This month is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month in the United States. To help raise awareness about this disease, we are sharing some of the best breast cancer awareness ads we’ve ever seen to date.

For more facts about breast cancer, be sure to visit the National Breast Cancer Foundation’s website.

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