It is said that a countries health is known by the health status of its women. The World Health Organization (WHO) describes women’s health as a “state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not merely absence of disease or infirmity.”
In developing and poorer countries, women are the socially and economically backward gender. They thus, are at a disadvantage and do not have proper access to health care facilities. In the developed nations one finds that there is not much difference in the life expectance of either men or women. Rather females are found to be living longer than men.
Why Women need more health care
Biologically speaking, the body of a female differs from a male in terms of gene makeup, its expression, and its products. Women are vulnerable to diseases and illnesses at all stages of life.
These illnesses may include:
- Gynecological problems some of which are: menstruation, menstrual irregularities, urinary tract infections, pelvic floor disorders, uterine fibroids, bacterial vaginosis, etc.
- Pregnancy issues involving unwanted pregnancy, complications at the time of pregnancy, abortion, miscarriage, prenatal care, breastfeeding, birth defects, etc
- Disorders related to infertility including polycystic ovary syndrome, endometriosis, primary ovarian insufficiency, and more
- Various women’s cancers like breast cancer, cervical cancer, ovarian cancer,
- Other disorders and conditions involving bone health, dementia, anemia, cardiovascular diseases, menopause, sexual abuse, and domestic abuse.
The list though is never-ending we do not see many families or women themselves taking out time to consider these diseases seriously.
Testing and Preventing
‘Prevention is better than cure. There are certain fatal diseases which if detected in the early stages can be cured. Naming some like diabetes, osteoporosis, cancer which on yearly screening can be detected even before the appearance of symptoms. which screen tests are to be taken depends upon your family history, your health, age, and other risk factors.
Some common health tests which a woman should take every year
- PAP Smear Pelvic examination
- Thyroid Test
- Lipid Panel Test
- Blood Pressure Test
- Osteoporosis screening test
- Women between the ages of 21 and 34 years should visit the gynecologist once every year for a regular examination. Women above 35 years can visit every alternate year
A healthy lifestyle along with all these tests can further help at keeping the ship at bay. Lifestyle includes eating healthy and staying fit by regular exercising. Some women are in the habit of preparing the best food for the family while eating the leftovers. Women should give weightage to what they eat and should plan a healthy daily meal for themselves which should include:
- Olive Oil
- Leafy green vegetables
Fitness can be achieved by at least 45 minutes exercise routine which should include some of these
- Weight lifting
- Bodyweight exercises
Women, be they homemakers or bread earners, they must take their health seriously. If they stay healthy happy and fit, they can take care of their family well. Initially, it might seem selfish to begin with but they are doing this too for their family and in turn for their country. I end with the same saying that I started with, ‘A country’s health is known by the health status of its women’.