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Health

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Staying a shape for a lot of people can be rocket science as it seems not just impossible but difficult. For some, it is even harder because they have to work from home and are used to sedentary lifestyle.

How then do you stay in shape without doing too much?

Healthy Eating

Here are some healthy hacks for fat loss:
  • Keep tinned and preserved food in storage for emergencies, but eat fresh on the daily. Purchase or procure real food like vegetables, fruits, and meat whenever you can. A lot of people are now turning to urban homesteading. If you can’t grow your own greens, find out where you can get your fresh foods in your immediate vicinity.
  • Leave out processed food out of your grocery cart. You can’t eat something that’s not present in your home no matter your midnight cravings.
  • Follow food blogs who prepare healthy meals that you are partial to. Avoid videos about desserts and sweets.
  • Keep a journal and take photos of your healthy meals.

Not only will these improve your eating habits, these tips also double as healthy hacks for fat loss.

Movement

Coming from a day of hard work (while trying not to catch anything) or having to stay at home for days on end, especially if you work from home, it’s easy to just Netflix and chill, literally. The body’s natural response to stress is usually a surplus of sleeping or eating, or both.

To keep your health and your immune system up, make sure you are doing healthy movement everyday. And yes, this means some form of exercise. Instead of passively gaining weight, you can take this opportunity to build the body you’ve always wanted.

Here are some tips to get you moving:

  • If you like dancing, build a library of your favorite zumba or dance routines on YouTube done to your favorite songs. It’s a great way to keep motivated when you enjoy the instructor and love the songs your bopping to.
  • There is a plethora of free exercise videos on YouTube. Take your pick from gentle tai chi, heart-pounding cardio, or stretchy yoga. Mix it up every other day to keep it exciting.
  • If you prefer using an app, find a free exercise app on the App or Play Store. Even better, they have tracking features that will let you see your progress.
  • If you are blessed with a lawn or a backyard, take advantage of the warm weather by doing some gardening. Plant greens that can be harvested fast and/or regrow food from scraps. Not only will you be moving your body, you’ll also be getting sunshine and healthy greens for your meals.

Now, if your goal is weight loss, here’s something interesting. Most health experts believe that weight loss is a combination of exercise and diet. However, exercise is often said to be 20% responsible for a person’s weight loss.

Cardiovascular exercises like jogging, aerobics, and biking are excellent for circulation, heart health, and increasing lung capacity. Strength-training exercises are excellent for protecting bones and disease prevention. Once you lose weight, you still want to maintain a long, healthy lifestyle.

Hydrating

Did you know that stress and water are directly linked?

When you are undergoing stress, your heart rate goes up and you breathe more heavily. This results in the body losing more fluid. To add to that, people often forget to eat and drink when they are heavily distracted by anxiety triggers. Keeping this in mind, make sure to stay hydrated during these stressful times.

If you’re in a space where you feel a hunger pain, drink some hot water with lemon first. In many cases, people eat with the assumption that they’re hungry. In reality, the body is craving more water. If you love the fizzy, carbonated sensation, pour some carbonated water on ice.

When the body remains hydrated, you’ll give your body the foundation it needs to work efficiently. Plus, juice, lattes, and other sugar-filled drinks are loaded with calories. Decrease your intake of liquid calories by drinking lots of water instead.

 

When life is shaking us up and we’re feeling stressed … it can be tough to feel resilient.

Resilience helps us to deal with the chaos and overwhelm … but how to we create it when we feel like we’re underwater?

The first step is to remove things that are adding unnecessary stress. The second step is to do things that help us feel replenished.

Those two steps won’t get us all the way to full resilience, but they’re a huge huge start.

Remove Extra Stress…

Some stress is inevitable — wishing for a life where we feel zero stress is just going to add more stress.

But if we are flooded with stress, removing some of it can help us to clear the space to create even more resilience. If we don’t remove the extra stress, we’ll never do the things we need to take care of ourselves, or to train our minds to be more resilient.

So removing unnecessary stress is the first step.

Some examples:

  • If you’re drinking a lot, reduce down to 1-2 glasses of wine a night. Zero might be even better for some, but it’s useless to ask someone to quit alcohol when they’re flooded with stress.
  • Similarly, reducing smoking or other narcotics or drugs would be a big help.
  • If you’re working late into the night, creating a stopping point earlier would be a big help, if possible.
  • Cut back on your workload a bit, if you’re able to. Delegate the ones you can. Create a to-do list and prioritize the ones you can’t delegate.
  • Stop saying yes to everything, and take fewer meetings. Don’t be afraid to turn down excess workload as well.
  • If you’re fighting a lot with someone, refrain for a bit. Take a breather and let yourself settle.
  • If you’re watching things or playing games late into the night and getting little sleep, cut back on that.
  • If you’re watching news or reading things online that really get you angry, stop that for awhile.
  • Cut out social media if that gets you anxious.

And so on.

Removing these stressors will help you catch your breath.

…Then replenish yourself.

I don’t mean that you have to take a spa weekend (though that would be great!) … I mean doing little things that help you feel more recharged and settled.

These things fill you up, so that you can better take on the world.

For example:

  • Go for walks out in nature.
  • Create space for reading, having tea, taking a bath, journaling.
  • Talk with someone regularly, in person or over the phone.
  • Take naps.
  • Get better sleep.
  • Take a weekend off.
  • Get some sunshine, if there’s any where you are.
  • Take moments of stillness and deep breathing during your day.

These little things can make a huge difference.

You won’t get all the way to resilience with these two steps — but you’ll have given yourself what you need to take the further steps of shifting your thinking patterns and practicing resilience.

As humans, occasional retreats are necessary because that is how we get rest, reignite our fire and bounce back with energy to continue on the journey to efficiency and productivity.

However, we sometimes get so engrossed with life and work and personal issues that we refuse to pay attention to our own need to take a break and do nothing but rest and allow your body and mind heal.

So instead, our body and mind revolts and breaks down, screaming and letting us know they need a break.

How do you know you should take a break?

Simple.

When you begin to experience any of the 8 signs below, you should take a break.

1. You’re watching hours and hours of pet videos at the office during work hours.

Seriously. Maybe it’s cats. Maybe it’s reruns of Bridgerton . Maybe it’s random YouTube videos. The point is, you are no longer focused on your work. What you do seem to care about though, is how to pass the time.

2. You make careless mistakes that shouldn’t have happened.

When you stop caring, you tend to make careless mistakes. You accidentally drop your purse into the trash can at a restaurant. Your emails suddenly contain embarrassing typos. You look like a confused deer when you’re asked for your opinion in a meeting because you weren’t paying attention the whole time. You call a coworker by the wrong name because your brain cannot process their real name.

3. You’re emotionally overwhelmed and sometimes, you cry for no reason.

You’re upset, irritated, angry, frustrated, or sad over what would normally be a small issue. This happens to almost everyone. If you find yourself breaking down emotionally, that might be a good time to consider a break. Maybe it means walking outside for 30 minutes. Maybe it means buying a one-way ticket to Hawaii to lay on the beach and bask in the sun. Maybe it means driving to a resort nearby for a weekend. Take a deep breath, collect yourself, and consider taking a break.

4. You’re always exhausted.

Feeling tired for a day? That’s absolutely normal. Feeling tired for an entire month? That’s definitely not normal. Remember to get enough sleep and to take care of yourself. While it’s great to be hyper productive for a short period of time, it’s usually not worth it in the long term. Pace yourself.

5. You hate waking up for work

The alarm goes off and the first thing you think is “I really don’t want to go to work.” You no longer feel inspired by the company mission. You feel like you can’t make an impact anymore. You feel like you’re going through the motions. It’s time for you to step away. Take a moment for yourself. When you remove yourself from the situation, you allow yourself to think more clearly and to get a fresh perspective on what the next step should be.

6. You’re having trouble falling asleep

You have too much on your mind — that next project, that big deadline, that promotion you’ve always wanted, that coworker who seems like they can’t stand you. If you’re starting to lose sleep over work, it’s time to take a break. If you don’t take the break, the lack of sleep will start to hurt your health and your passion, energy, and focus will start to fade.

7. You’re getting physically sick a lot.

If you’re under a lot of stress, not sleeping well, and working crazy amounts of hours, your immune system is probably under a lot of duress and you’ll likely get sick quite often. Don’t let your physical health go sideways — take some time off and go on a break!

8. You’re dreaming of quitting work with no plan in place

You’ve romanticized the idea of quitting in your head. You have no back-up plan or next steps in place. It’s a clear sign that you’re simply trying to get away. Instead of making a quick decision with huge implications, it may be best to take a short break to see if that’s what you truly want.

If you’re seeing these signs, take a moment, take a step back, and take a break — you’ll be better for it.

Lupus or SLE – Systemic Lupus Erythematous is an autoimmune disease in which a person’s immune system attacks its own body’s tissue, with symptoms and severity varying from patient to patient.

In simple terms your immune system is doing exactly what it is not supposed to do; which can cause disease of the skin, heart, lungs, kidneys, joints and nervous system. 90% of Lupus patients are women.

Although the disease can affect anybody, 90% of lupus patients are women between the ages of 14 – 45 years-old. For some, it’s life-threatening and for others, it’s entirely manageable.

Unfortunately, There is no known cause of Lupus and also no cure. The only way to manage it is through medication and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

The symptoms vary from person to person but here are 9 common symptoms every woman can recognize easily.

NB: Here are some symptom, not all.

1. Joint swelling and pain
Joint pains and joint swelling and stiffness in the morning are all classic signs of lupus. It most commonly presents in the wrists, knuckles, and fingers. Swelling can also come and go with lupus and doesn’t get progressively worse it tends to occur more in younger patients.

2. Shortness of Breath or Chest Pain
There are manifestations of lupus where the disease attacks the lining of the lungs, causing fluid to leak out and surround the lungs.

This can make it feel painful to breathe. “In some cases, that same process can occur around the lining of the heart, which is called pericarditis,” she adds.

3.Skin rashes and photosensitivity
Lupus is sometimes marked by a distinctive “butterfly rash” forming over the bridge of the nose and cheeks, which is exacerbated by sun exposure.

4. Hair loss
Lupus also causes women to lose their hair especially when combing. It can also cause sores in the scalp and lead to baldness. If you present with this symptom, you should also have your thyroid evaluated because hair loss is a classic symptom of hypothyroidism.

5. Ulcers of the mouth and nose
Unlike typical sores that develop on the sides of the mouth or gums, ulcers triggered by lupus usually develop on the roof of the mouth and are painless. Lupus-related ulcers can also appear inside the nose.

Curated from WomenAfrica

Having a fresh sugarcane juice is not just yummy but highly refreshing. The juice is not just another drink, but one of the healthiest drinks that you could lay your hands on. Here are a list of health benefits of sugarcane juice that will put a lot of and artificial energy drinks to behind.

  1. Prevents cancer: Sugarcane juice is alkaline in nature because of the high concentration of calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron, and manganese, which helps prevent diseases like cancer, that cannot survive in an alkaline environment. Thus it helps in fighting various types of cancer such as prostate and breast cancer.
  2. Aids in digestion: It is good for the well-being of the digestive system due to its high potassium levels. It helps in keeping the digestive system in good shape, prevents stomach infections and is considered to be particularly useful in treating the problem of constipation.
  3. Prevents heart diseases: It also prevents heart diseases and stroke as it helps decrease the levels of unhealthy or cholesterol and triglycerides.
  4. Helps in reducing weight: As sugarcane juice reduces the bad cholesterol levels in the body and has natural sugars, it helps in reducing weight. It is high in soluble fibre which aids in shedding weight.
  5. Good for treating diabetes: Sugarcane is sweet in taste and is full of natural sweeteners, which have a low gylcemic index (GI), hence it works very well for diabetic patients.
  6. Clears skin imperfections: When it comes to healthy skin, Alpha Hydroxy Acids (AHAs) which are part of the natural constituents of sugarcane juice, are supposed to have a lot of benefits. They fight acne, reduce blemishes, prevent ageing and help in keeping the skin hydrated. Just apply sugarcane juice to your skin and let it dry or add it to your favourite face mask and scrub, and your skin will look radiant and clean.

For more read here

Endometriosis is a relatively prevalent female reproductive disease. It is a painful disorder that affects the reproductive system and surrounding organs.

Women are diagnosed with endometriosis when the tissue that normally lines the inside of the uterus actually grows outside the uterus. When this happens, the ovaries (and possibly the fallopian tubes and tissue lining of the pelvis) are affected.

It is a gynaecological condition associated with menstruation where tissue similar to the lining of the womb is found in other areas of the body, including the fallopian tubes, pelvis, bowel, vagina, and intestines.

It has been alleged that 30 – 40% of Nigerian women (who live in Nigeria) suffer from endometriosis.

There is also a recent study that claims approximately 11% of women and girls in Nigeria unknowingly live with the disorder, even though they show no symptoms, with diagnosis only occurring years later.

These are important tips every lady should know about Endometriosis.

1. Cause And Risk Factors

The exact cause of endometriosis is not currently fully understood. Any woman can develop endometriosis, but some risk factors increase the risk. Risk factors such as age as it is most common in women in their 30’s.

Other possible risk factors of endometriosis include;

  • Problems with menstrual flow: Menstrual blood enters the fallopian tubes and the pelvis instead of leaving the body in the usual way.
  • Surgical scar: Endometrial cells can move during a procedure such as a hysterectomy or C-section.
  • Genetics: There may be an inherited component. A woman with a close family member who has endometriosis is more likely to develop endometriosis herself.
  • Hormones: Endometriosis is stimulated by the hormone estrogen.
  • Immune system: Problems with the immune system can prevent the destruction of extrauterine endometrial tissue.

2. Symptoms

  • Severe menstrual cramps
  • Long-term lower back and pelvic pain
  • Periods lasting longer than 7 days
  • Heavy menstrual bleeding where the pad or tampon needs changing every 1 to 2 hours
  • Bowel and urinary problems including pain, diarrhea, constipation and bloating
  • Bloody stool or urine
  • Painful intercourse

3. Diagnosis

Diagnosis can be challenging because there is no single test for evaluation. The only way to truly confirm the condition is by undergoing a surgical laparoscopy.

A surgical laparoscopy is a minimally invasive procedure in which a thin, lighted tube with a miniature camera attached, called a laparoscope, is inserted through a small incision in the pelvic area. It can take many years to receive a diagnosis.

Other possible diagnostic strategies include a pelvic exam, radiologic imaging with ultrasound, or magnetic resonance imaging, and the use of certain medications including birth control.

4. Treatments

Surgery is possible, but it is normally considered only if other treatments are not effective. Other options include for treatment may include;

  • Pain medications: Either over-the-counter (OTC) nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB, others) or prescription drugs for the treatment of painful menses. Some doctors also recommend hot water bottle therapy.
  • Hormones: Treatment may be with hormonal therapies such as hormonal birth control. Placement of an intrauterine device (IUD) may also be recommended.
  • Fertility treatment: Pregnancy may be recommended via in-vitro fertilization (IVF).

Chioma Favour Uzoma is a fifth year Pharmacy student of the University of Benin. She is the first of three girls.

She is passionate about the future of Nigeria and improving its health sector which made her start a Health and Wellness website (MedBlogNigeria) where she is a content creator. She advocates for healthy living through her organization named The Medvocacy Initiative Africa (TMI Africa).

She is an entrepreneur at Dainty Cakes and Event. She is also a fashion and beauty enthusiast.

Let’s meet you. Who is Chioma?

Chioma is a fifth year pharmacy student of the University of Benin, the first of three girls. I am a Christian, content creator at MedblogNigeria, an entrepreneur at Dainty Cakes and Event, Founder TMI Africa @t.m.i_africa and Member of JCI.

Made by chioma

 

I am very passionate about the future of Nigeria, everything that goes on wrongly in this country affects me in a very strange way and I intend to contribute to scalable and sustainable impact in this nation, and in Africa at large.

Who and what inspires you?

The persons who inspire me the most are young Nigerian women who are doing exploits in their various fields. The likes of Toby Lordwilliams,founder of girlhub Africa, Dr Chioma,Cassie Akide, Pharm Onyekachi etc., and older women who have conquered their spheres such as Mrs Ibukun Awosika, Bukky George and of course my Mum, She inspires me a lot.
I love these women so much, and whenever I feel discouraged, I simply look at their pages on Instagram, see what they are up to and sincerely, I’m pumped back up.

The desire to be successful in life also drives me.

One accessory you can’t leave home without?

My small bag of course.
Because I get to put all my tiny stuffs in it.

What is your biggest fear?

This Girl is fearless.
I believe God has not given me the Spirit of fear and this has kept me going.

You own a Health and wellness website (MedBlogNigeria) with pages on Instagram and Facebook (Medblog_ng) where you help inform people’s health decisions. What prompted you to start this? And what do you plan to do differently in the health sector through your website and other platforms?

Well, I actually started them because I love writing and I love searching for information (My friends literally ask me for details to any gist circulating online and I always have the details). I have been writing since my secondary school days and it has become part of me. Also, being a Pharmacy student, people naturally assume you know the answers to all their health problems, so they bombard you with questions.
It was only natural for me to incorporate my writing skills which is also a passion for me into my profession, hence the birth of MedBlogNigeria.

I also found it as a way to bridge the communication gap between health personnels and the general public. Now you don’t have to go to a Pharmacy or a Hospital to get certain health information, just turn on your data, ask a question, drop a comment and your questions are answered. We simply inform the health decisions of the general public which I think is a great idea.

Your best quote?

Do it afraid, do it unsure, do it uncertain but do it anyway!

You are a versatile young lady with so many things on your hands. You are also an entrepreneur who bakes and sells cakes also. How do you balance the demands of all of these with your academics?*

The truth is, it is not an easy task but I am someone who is very passionate about anything I do. Passion drives any human.

I’ve also learnt to manage my time, to do the right things at the right time, maximize my holidays, have the right support system and these have helped me thus far.

Which city/ country will you love to visit soonest?

That would be Paris. I studied French all through my six years in secondary school, I would love to practice my French speaking skills.

If given the chance to be the President of Nigeria for a day, what will you change?

Inasmuch as I think a day is quite too short to make any meaningful changes in a country like Nigeria, I guess I will quickly rewrite the national budget and present a more inclusive one where the basic needs of every Nigerian is prioritized, I would allocate more funds to the health sector which I think is at a pathetic state currently.

As a pharmacy student, you advocate for healthy living for individuals through an organization you run “The Medvocacy Initiative for Africa (TMI Africa).” Can you shed more light on TMI Africa? Its activities, aims and achievements so far?

TMI Africa is an organization of young medical advocates and volunteers. We encourage youths especially those who are medically inclined to actively promote health within their immediate environment and to the general public.
We engage in online health campaigns, dissemination of health information, health outreaches in schools through collaborations and partnerships.
Although we are just starting out, we engaged fully and effectively in the cervical cancer campaign online and it was very helpful to many as a lot of people became aware of the disease and tips for prevention.
We hope to achieve more in coming months.

What was growing up in a Nigerian home like and how did it contribute to the path you have chosen?

(Laughs) I think we all know what growing in a Nigerian home is like.
My home was a special case because my parents were really strict on my sisters and i due to fact that we were girls, they didn’t want us to “spoil.”
But we thank God because it is part of what has made me the woman I am today and I’m grateful.

Where do you see yourself/your brand in the next 5 years?

I am passionate about entrepreneurship because I believe that every economy that we admire has a viable private sector to boast of. If we are going to see sustainable changes in the Nigerian economy, the private sector has a huge role to play and I want to be at the forefront of that in the health and beauty space.

If you were given the opportunity to address a group of girls five years younger than you, what will be your advice to them?

I would advice them to maximise their social media. I say this everyday that this social media thing we see is way under utilised.
My social media is one of my biggest influences. I follow smart, intelligent, purpose driven individuals who inform my everyday life. My Instagram account is really boring to an average youth because i follow more content than glam.

I would advice them to Cherish their relationship with God because ,he is the ultimate giver of Life, wisdom and prosperity.

Lastly, I will advise them to be focused. Most of the things we care so much about currently are so irrelevant. Focus on things that matter to your future.

Thanks alot, Rubygirls for this interview, I’m truly honored!

When it comes to beauty so many believe its all to do with what you slather on your face – like cosmetics and make up products. Well, those could help for the moment but having a flawless beautiful skin and look, goes beyond that, and that’s what the Japanese women are known for. They’ve got an age defying beautiful skin that makes it difficult to tell their age.

Here are some little secrets of theirs:

1. Green tea.

This is a soothing beverage packed with antioxidant, antiinflammatory, this are necessary for a healthy body and skin glow. Green tea protects the skin from harmful UV rays therefore minimizing the appearance of lines and wrinkles. It reactivates dying skin cells, improve skin complexion and fights cancer. This is one of their best secret.

2. Balanced Meal Plan

Their food contain low fatty meat, low sugar, less oils. They’ll rather eat more of fish which contains loads of omega-3 fatty acids, health-promoting, anti-aging molecules. They eat variety of food rich in fibres, vitamins and minerals in high quantities, variety good foods.

3. Rice Water

Rice is a food they consider special. They use the water it was boiled in, simply as a facial wash, or add it to their bath water. It contains the minerals that have left the grains during cooking and it also contains starch, a soothing substance for the skin.

4. Vitamin C.

Japanese women constantly take vitamin C through food, supplements, drinks, fruit and vegetables, and cosmetic products. It breaks down melanin, the natural pigmentation we get in our skin from tanning or aging. It’s the sunny vitamin that brightens and gives you truly natural and glowing skin

5. Healthy Cleanser

They will use mild cleaners. Oils are also part of their cleansing routine because oils dissolve other oils and the “dirt” on your face, as well as the oil secreted by the glands in the skin.

6. Makeup Healthy

When it comes to cosmetics they believe your skin should complement the makeup, and not the makeup hiding it. “We value the beautiful and healthy state of the skin, rather than piling up a lot of makeup on. Sheer and natural foundation is more common than heavy coverage foundation,” said a Japanese beauty blogger.

These are some of their easy tips for anyone to try any where in the world. They still have more.

Note, makeup can weary the skin to age quickly if its on for too long and so, should be washed off before bedtime.

By age 30, lot of women will more likely have a home and a thriving career.  This period calls for a more super busy schedule than ever.

So, getting a healthy lifestyle becomes more challenging. Here are some tips to help:

1. Start Medical Screening

Regardless of your age, you should see a doctor for your overall health. Your cholesterol levels, blood pressure and even pelvic status should be known. You do not have to wait till you hit the 60s.

2. Don’t Joke With The Greens And Fruits

Eat healthy. Vegetables should consist of about 50% of your meal plan. Include multivitamin in your nutrition plan and take folate if you’re considering getting pregnant. Getting enough fruits and eating right generally would help you fight those age causing free radical caused by stress.

3.Exercise & Strength Training

Get advice from your doctor before you begin. At age 30 women begin to loose bone mass. Engaging in activities that stretch your muscle capacity can help you build and maintain strong bones even as you get older. And consume some calcium rich foods.

4. Get Gentle With your Skin

Your skin is not the same with a teenager anymore. Avoid using harsh chemical product. Use products that wouldn’t strip healthy oils from your skin. When we get older our skin get drier, so you should consider things that are hydrating and that help your retain moisture  for a healthy looking skin.

Avoid harsh sunlight, and get a  sunscreen as much as you can.

These list comprises the MAJOR steps to getting a long time healthy life as you age further. They are often overlooked as most women often depend on procedures like anti-aging cosmetics and surgeries, which of course do little to help the body internal metabolism age slower unlike the listed options above.