This year, May 8-14 is National Women’s Health Week. It starts each year on Mother’s Day and is supposed to encourage women and girls to make their health a priority. Last year, I wrote, “It was only in 2019 that the National Institutes of Health began classifying women’s health as a research category. Before that, NIH judged its progress in women’s health research by the percentage of women enrolled as research subjects.”
The government has been struggling to redress the imbalance. National Women’s Health Week is part of that. It is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. This year, its observance is not so much about funding women’s healthcare research as it is about exhorting girls and women to care for themselves.
Women Provide the Care
The message is needed. According to the Family Caregiver Alliance, two-thirds of long-term caregivers are women. And while men increasingly provide some care, female caregivers can spend 50% more time at it than males. Further, “The average caregiver is a 49 year old woman who works outside the home and provides 20 hours per week of unpaid care to her mother.” Does that sound at all familiar? Yes, your mother needs you. But you need to care for yourself as well.
Strategies for Health
Here are Peak Recovery & Health Center’s five strategies for your health and happiness:
- Get healthcare. See a doctor, nurse practitioner, or physician’s assistant for regular checkups and preventive care. Be assertive and comprehensive about describing your symptoms and perceived limitations of your daily activities. If your healthcare provider doesn’t listen to you, find one who does.
- Avoid alcohol, smoking, and illicit drugs. There is no amount of these things that contributes to good health.
- Stay fit. Fitness doesn’t just contribute to your health. It colors your very view of the world and yourself. Fitness helps you sleep better and move through the day better. It can even help manage anxiety and depression. And it generally improves heart health. Note that heart disease is the leading killer of women.
- Avoid long-term stress. On its own, long-term stress can create serious health problems. It can also lead to anxiety and depression, which are their own health problems, and to which women are generally more susceptible than men.
- Eat for health. The precise mix of protein, carbs, fats, and micronutrients needed for good health is unique to you. Avoid fad diets and learn the components of your own ideal nutrition plan.
Support for Women’s Health
At Peak Recovery & Health Center, we can help with at least three of the five strategies. Fitness, for example, requires both exercise and recovery. Our recovery technologies — cryotherapy, photobiomodulation, infrared sauna, float therapy, compression therapy, and massage — can soothe tired and sore muscles as well as rejuvenate your cells. This gets you ready for your next workout and keeps you on plan.
Third, we can help you find your unique nutrition plan. We can measure your metabolism, cardiovascular and respiratory condition, cellular health, fat burning zone, and daily calorie burn with scientific accuracy. Then we can help you plan your nutrition based on the needs of your body as well as your eating preferences.
Enjoy Women’s Health Week. But more than that, secure the benefits of good health for yourself and your family.