Posts tagged with: Health


Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers dance
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Who doesn’t like free, right?

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First-time birth control recommendation

Image of vaginal birth control device NuvaRing
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Recently one of my health writing bosses approached me about her own daughter’s birth control options. I was honored to be asked for my advice, and I thought that I would share here what I shared in an email.

“As a first-time birth control user, I’d recommend she use condoms and a birth control pill. The pill was a “reminder” to me that I had to use another method to be safe from STIs, and it taught me to keep my own sexual health in mind every single day. If your daughter worries about remembering to take the pill, a few suggestions of mine are to set a cell phone alarm clock and carry your pills in your purse (so you can take one when the alarm goes off), take it when you brush your teeth (at night or in the morning) or leave it on the corner of your bed, and as you get into bed, take it then (that’s my method).

If she really is against remembering to take something, the NuvaRing or the Ortho-Evra patch are other “three-weeks in/on”-“one-week out/off” that are discrete and effective.

I’m not a fan of recommending the depo shot as a first method of birth control as it offers no STI protection and there are oftentimes some heavy side effects that come with it.”

Whatever methods of birth control you are looking at, I recommend you check out WEGOHealth’s birth control pages forthorough, unbiased information.

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Pregnancy Pact Prompts Pill Promotion

The facade of Glouce...
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I read an interesting story about June’s news on the “pregnancy pacts that occurred at Gloucester High School. The whole story just boggles my mind; but that’s me. Do you remember the story? 17 teen girls from one high school ended up pregnant – so that they could be pregnant together. Anyway, the whole point of this blog was that ‘Pregnancy Pact’ Prompts High School to Hand out Birth Control. I am encouraged that a situation with such drastic results has ended up in a positive position.

Reading that story made me think about what I believe with regards to birth control and teenagers.

I believe that birth control should be offered in high schools. I also believe that education about birth control should be mandatory. Without the education part of that equation, I don’t think that condoms or birth control methods should be offered within a high school, but with the proper education, most teenagers can figure out the best method for their own sexual protection.

Expect a quick blog post here shortly about my own birth control recommendations for high schoolers.

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Sweepstakes Abound

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month
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When does chronic illness in women begin?

Toronto Grace Health Centre
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A friend recently emailed me a great theory: due to sleep deprivation, hormonal changes and physical hardship, chronic disease in women begins after giving birth to her first child.

It makes total sense! Your body goes through some immense changes while pregnant and immediately afterward so the chemical changes in your body could easily trigger gene “malformations” that would make you more susceptible to illnesses that you had never thought about before.

Unfortunately I can’t find ANY research on this topic and now that I’m interested, I may have something more to think about while graduate school looms, and my chronic illness begins.

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mental health week
Image by meerar via Flickr

Hi! You’ve reached Women’s Health, but currently I’m away from my desk

Right now I am:

  • working 40 hours a week at one job,
  • being trained for new duties at that job,
  • working 10 hours a week at another job,
  • handling a huge and somewhat mentally overwhelming project at that job,
  • trying to write enough to keep me sane,
  • going to church four or five days a week,
  • attempting to have a life outside of that stuff,
  • mentally preparing myself for a family reunion/my grams’ memorial service this weekend and
  • breathing deeply.

I may be missing in action for a couple of days while I try to screw my head back onto my neck (it ran away about 37 minutes ago. While I am gone, I suggest you check out the following sites which I adore:

I will return as soon as I can find that head (SHOOT! Did someone leave the front door open?) and I will be back to spamming your reader with women’s health news!

Until then, tell me what you do to keep your stress level down!


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These pants are too tight!

An apitherapy ...
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Laying back on my bed, I suck my stomach in and hold my breath as I button my favorite pants. I stand up and then immediately squat, I’ve gotta stretch out the denim and make them slightly more comfortable. My original idea of themed days is feeling a bit like those pants. Tight, constricting, too small.

I am breaking out of my self-prescribed shell to talk about whatever I want. If I want to talk about schizophrenia today I will. If I want to talk about bunions tomorrow, I’ll do that, too. Maybe on Thursday we’ll chat about urinary incontinence. I’ll be talking about whatever I want on whichever day I want now. Hopefully that’ll loosen my pants up a little bit!

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Friday 5 – 10/3/08

Energy-dense foods, such as fast food (picture...
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Five Goals for October


  1. Lose two more pounds. By walking and watching what I was eating, I managed to lose three pounds in September. I want to lose two more in October, November and December and then I’ll be down to my goal weight. It’s really as easy as I made it out to sound, too; walk every other day and don’t eat as much, you’ll lose weight.
  2. Declutter for 7.75 hours. This gives me a choice; declutter the whole house in one day or declutter for 15 minutes a day every day in October. I’ll probably lean towards the latter option and declutter for a bit each day. I spent 15 minutes one day last week and managed to go from three overflowing craft drawers to having one & a half empty drawers! Imagine what 7.75 hours will leave me!
  3. Go to work every single day I’m scheduled. I am making it a personal goal not to call in at all during October. No matter how poor I’m feelin, unless I’m contagious, I am going to work. I actually have quite a few paid days out of the branch in October. Everyone has Columbus Day off (yay for discovering America!), I have four days of training (to become a personal banker instead instead of “just” a teller), and I have the Wed-Friday of Halloween week off as well. I think I can handle showing up every single other day!
  4. No fast food. This is going to be a hard one, but it’s something that I know will also help me with goal number one. I will not go through a drive-thru or into a fast food resturant for the entire month of October. The more I think about setting this goal, the more it scares me, but the more I want to challenge myself to do it. I will allow myself Subway (no drive-thru), Papa Murphy’s (a pizza lasts me three days!) or ONE resturant meal (<$10) a week. Saving money and saving my waistline – way to go!
  5. Related to the previous goal, if I go out to eat, half of the food I order has to be saved for lunch the next day or dinner later that evening. Subway is a $5 foot long sandwhich that gives me two meals. Pizza lasts me three days, for $8. A resturant will be $9 and I can do dinner and then lunch the next day. (These two goals will encourage me to cook for myself as well and to save my eating out for special occasions!)

Wanna set some goals for October with me?

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Paid Focus Group for Birth Control Users

A model wears clothes made...
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Paid Focus Group for Birth Control Users

WEGO Health is a new consumer health website and we are running focus groups on Wednesday, October 8th, for women who are currently using birth control, or have in the past. Focus groups will be held at 12 Noon Eastern Time, 4pm ET, 6pm ET and 8pm ET.

Please note: These groups will take one hour and will require participants to be online and on the phone at the same time. Participants should also be able to view streaming video on their computers.

We are looking for women who:

1) Are between 24 and 35 years of age
2) Are currently on prescription birth control or have been in the past (prescription birth control includes pills, the patch, the ring, IUDs, and others)
3) Stay current on available birth control options through research
4) Are active contributors or frequent visitors to healthcare communities

If you are interested, please email and include the following information:

1) Your name
2) Your phone number (there will be a brief phone screen)
3) Where you do your health and/or birth control research (names of websites, online communities, books, etc)
4) Focus group time slots that will work for you (12 Noon Eastern Time, 4pm ET, 6pm ET, or 8pm ET) on Wednesday, October 8th (Please list your top two choices)
5) SarahLiz from WEGOHealth sent you

Compensation: $25 gift certificate.

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Seasonal Affective Disorder: The Basics

February 2, 2007
Image via Wikipedia

I mentioned yesterday that Oregonians are about to face a serious lack of sunshine and it will take it’s toll on many of us.

Seasonal affective disorder, otherwise known as SAD, is caused by a lack of sunlight during the “dark days” of winter. Bright light therapy, antidepressants and counseling have been known to help get through those days.

Some of the symptoms of Seasonal Affective Disorder include:

  • depression – if you notice you’re feeling blue, sad, and without joy with no reason to feel this way; it could be a sign
  • lack of energy – nothing is exciting anymore, life is blah, and you just want to vegetate in your favorite char watching television; it could be a sign
  • general malaise – something is wrong and you can’t figure it out, it could be a sign
  • weight gain – the lack of energy (not doing your indoor workouts?) and comfort foods put together equals expanding waistline; it could be a sign
  • a need for more sleep – along with the lack of energy, if all you want to do is sleep; it could be a sign
  • difficulty concentrating – your brain has shut down, you can’t keep your facts straight, and your work is suddenly suffering; it could be a sign

If mid-fall you realize that you’re just not feeling right, these signs might be something to watch out for. I recommend you call your physician and talk to him or her about your symptoms and suggesting that it might be SAD; please remember you can be happy!

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