Women’s health and women’s day
Image: Suzanne Christiansen
International Women’s Day is on 8 March this year, so happy day to all the women you know and love out there. Along with Mother’s Day on 19 March, it’s a banner period for women in our house. (internationalwomensday.com)
I do tend to talk about any health and nutrition issues I have domestically, thus making the ever-increasing use of salads and other Mediterranean dishes tolerable by the menfolk. They grumble and then they eat them. I use cheese as bribery, sprinkled on top. They dutifully drink the yogurt drinks with vitamins, while I have the sterol-loaded ones.
Mintel estimates that 74% of women prioritise getting enough sleep, while only 47% prioritise exercise. As a fairly strong believer in the use of exercise to help me get more sleep, I think one should follow the other.
Basically, it’s a virtuous circle. The more exercise you get, the better your sleep patterns, I have found. I also find I rage less when I’ve had a good swim or circuit training session. I can do things like go up a hill, or lug a bag of manure, without losing my breath – super hero skills indeed.
I may have shot myself in the foot with this belief, however. Having listened to my spiel, my spouse insisted we all do a 5km Parkrun (parkrun.org.uk) last Saturday as part of a full family exercise session. My son and I finished it, plodding around and cursing (me, mainly) while the husband took photos of us from the café, where he was enjoying his morning coffee. Needless to say, the rest of the weekend was largely devoted to recuperating from this venture, as I am woefully unused to running.
I also went to a women’s group meeting last week, and discovered a lot of women don’t realise there’s a link between menopause and cardiovascular disease. Once a woman hits menopause, her odds for having a CVD incident are equal to men’s. She’s also twice as likely to die from the disease as from breast cancer, in the UK. Heart attack survival rates are also lower in women than in men, with nearly half having another event – heart attack, death or stroke within five years. Ack.
So, my advice is, get your blood pressure checked. It often goes up without a person noticing. And go for a walk.
- Suzanne Christiansen, editor, Dairy Industries International.
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