Health & Fitness

Women’s health initiative – WHI

The women of today are far more efficient and occupied compared to former times. Not only they are responsible for domestic care of the household and kids, women are also actively taking part in the social, political, economical and industrial world. Though this empowers Women, on the other hand, the need for taking care of Women health that has ever been ignored, gains more importance now.

DISEASES COMMON TO MEN AND WOMEN:

The diseases and ailments that strike women outnumber the diseases and ailments in men. Additionally, although some diseases are common to both women and men, the intensity with which the diseases show up in Women is far more extreme. For eg:

  • Women are more likely to undergo bone issues like osteoporosis as they age, compared to men
  • Women are more likely to suffer heart diseases and hypertension
  • Panic, anxiety and depression is more commonly found in Women rather than men
  • Diseases of the urinary tract especially UTI’s are more common in Women

CHALLENGES FOR WOMEN:

Apart from the diseases common to both, women have greater challenges to face with their bodies undergoing rapid changes as they progress in age. These changes include:

  • Onset of menstrual cycle
  • Pregnancy
  • Lactation
  • Menopause

NEED OF WOMEN HEALTH INITIATIVE:

With all this established the need for a better care system for Women Health or Women Health Initiative is of utmost importance.  This does not need to be done only at household level, but also on official grounds. The offices and industries must ensure provision of medical benefits and regular screening to their employees for all the basic tests and enable them to medical and health care facilities

WOMEN HEALTH INITIATIVE DISABLED BY POVERTY:

Poverty is an important barrier in providing basic health amenities to individuals, both men and women but the burden of lack of basic health facilities mainly affects women more. Factors affected by poverty include:

  • Malnutrition or poor diet
  • Less or no access to basic sanitary supplies
  • Home remedies for serious diseases because of inability to afford proper medical treatment

WOMEN HEALTH INITIATIVE BY  NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF CHILD HEALTH (NIH):

The National Institute of Child Health (NIH) launched a 15 year program involving over 161,000 post menopausal women between ages 50-79. The study aims on establishing strategies for the prevention of most common diseases in women that include:

  • Osteoporosis
  • Colorectal and Breast Cancer
  • Heart diseases

ESSENTIAL COMPONENTS OF WOMEN HEALTH INITIATIVE PROGRAM:

  • Calcium and Vitamin D supplementation: The women are immediately put on Calcium and Vitamin D supplements once they join the Women Health Initiative program. This measure is taken for prevention, control  and progression of Osteoporosis
  • Dietary Modifications: Those women who joint this program are switched to a healthier diet which has lesser fat content and includes healthier options like protein, fiber and vitamins including fruits and vegetables
  • Hormone Replacement Therapy: Post menopausal women are more likely to be affected by heart diseases and breast cancer. By putting them under HRT, the incidence of these diseases is studied in women with and without therapy.

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