Welcome to Passport to Health!
Wellness for women
Wellness is a state of physical, mental and emotional well being. Most of us relegate our state of wellness to the far reaches of our consciousness. We tend to believe that health is just the absence of disease.
Srikumari loves her job. She also wants her children to be toppers in school. She makes sure that her husband can come home to a well kept and lovely home. She loves to cook amazing meals for her family and basks in their praise. She smiles as she takes her mother-in-law to the temple and does not mention the splitting headache she had when she escorted her father-in-law to his medical check-up. Srikumari sometimes feels that she could run away from home and find bliss! She just does not "feel well".
Living in the 21st century is an exhilarating and energizing experience. Women never had it so good. We are empowered in many ways. Educational avenues are opening up every day. Career opportunities are making women on par with men in the employment arena.
Unfortunately, all this newfound independence comes with a price. In our spanking new roles, we still cannot shed the traditional role of mother, wife, daughter, and daughter-in-law. You may be a top executive in a company but your sick child will want only you by his side when he is ill. You may be a traditional housewife, focused on giving your children the best but may be stressed with the need to help your child achieve her potential. In this brave new world, we juggle our roles. Most of the time we manage our different roles with aplomb but all this does engender stress.
Women have an innate need to please their family. Society has also imposed on us some specific duties. Too, women judge themselves and others of the same sex with definite yardsticks. Keeping a neat and orderly home, pleasing our husbands, bringing up accomplished children, taking care of old and sick parents and in-laws and still managing to look good is a utopia that often eludes us.
Indian women are at high risk for developing hypertension, diabetes and obesity, which alone or in combination can result in heart disease. How long women survive with some diseases, such as uterine cancer and breast cancer, is directly related to how early the disease is found. So what can we do to enhance our wellness and at the same time try to avoid disease?
Srikumari must realize that the first thing she has to do is to create time for herself in the day. Moderate physical exercise, eating right and taking care of her emotional needs with stress-busters like yoga, pranayama, listening to music or just curling up with a good book will go a long way towards making her feel well again.
This website will address issues that Indian women encounter in their quest for wellness. We will deal with strategies to enhance and maintain good health.
Tip of the Day:
Oral iron is best taken on an empty stomach or 2 hours after a meal. Vitamin C and citric fruit juices may help in absorption of iron. Milk, dairy products and calcium slow absorption of iron and so should not be taken at the same time as the iron tablet.
Dr Gita Arjun's Latest Article
Problems triggered by periods
Srilekha is in college. She dreads getting her periods because it means that she will suffer from an intense headache a day before she gets her menses. Subbulakshmi carries her inhaler in her bag around the time of her periods because she knows her asthma will get aggravated.
Why do periods precipitate problems?
Just before the period starts, the blood levels of estrogen and progesterone drop in the