We need better sex education for boys, stat.
This may be the greatest breakthrough in women’s health in decades.
“To see statistically significant HIV protection is a great step forward.”
“It’s time for Peru to clarify and implement its safe abortion guidelines.”
What happens to your body and your mind after you leave the hospital?
Because nobody wants to talk about what happens down there.
Sick and tired of nursing a tender back and upset stomach when it comes to that time of the month? Put away your usual ibuprofen and try some of these natural remedies which can cure even the worst menstrual cramps.
Swap green for ginger tea, which is actually proven to reduce pain over the length of your cycle. If the taste is too bitter at first, add one teaspoon of honey or a splash of lemon juice to make it sweeter.
Apple cider vinegar
Cleanse your body with a shot of apple cider vinegar which helps to regulate blood clotting and will relax the muscles of your uterus. It also helps to take some extra time off your cycle – who knew!
Supplements such as fish oil and other B vitamins are ideal if you’re looking for a long-term solution to chronic menstrual cramps. They specifically target fatigue, nausea, and headaches so you can get on with your day.
Enjoy 2 teaspoons of fresh oregano each morning before breakfast to cleanse your body and eliminate menstrual cramps. Oregano is packed with thymol and carvacrol which help to relax the uterus and decrease tension.
Finally, use a heating pad, which is a lifesaver if you suffer from back pain, abdominal cramping, or both! Simply warm it up in the microwave, wrap it in a tea-towel, then sit back and relax.
What are some of your natural remedies for menstrual cramps?
Image via Home Remedy Hacks
Sometimes it’s good to slow down and keep your life in order to prevent the dreaded feeling that you have way too much on your plate.
While this is completely normal and happens to almost everyone, it’s important to remain organised and make time for yourself amongst the chaos.
Here are some great tips to de-stress and avoid feeling completely burnt out by the end of the working week.
Keep a journal
A journal or wall calendar is a fantastic idea if you’re a visual person and need to see your entire week (or month) planned out ahead of you. Constantly remove the things you’ve achieved throughout the week, and add a few fun activities to your calendar to keep a work/life balance intact.
For some of us, sleep is difficult to achieve because the mind just doesn’t stop! To calmly get a good night’s sleep, it’s important to switch off at least an hour before hitting the sack, and make yourself a warm drink.
Chamomile, green tea, and mint tea are perfect options since the caffeine level is super-low, and won’t keep you up all night long.
Time for hobbies
Whether you enjoy unwinding with a game of lawn bowls or simply going out to brunch with friends, keep busy and make time for your hobbies throughout the week. Don’t lose track of who you are just because your work-life is taking over.
A bit of light exercise throughout the week is the best option for clearing your mind, and calming your nerves. If you just don’t like the idea of hitting the gym, sometimes a walk to the
Your skin might be feeling the stress, so adapt a stable skincare routine into your life. Start with the basics such as cleansing, toning and moisturising every morning and before bed for at least 3 months before your skin should see any big changes.
A healthy diet is important for keeping your system nourished throughout the day, while also maintaing a healthy body image. Don’t start with any crazy yo-yo diets which almost always end up with binge eating, but feed your body whenever it’s hungry (with healthy snacks of course).
Images via Cep
Who doesn’t want to lose weight while they eat?
Rather than choosing a snack with no added health benefits (apart from tasting ridiculously good), pick up one of these the next time you’re at the supermarket. Your body with thank you for it!
Any type of green veggies are the best way to burn belly fat, and keep from bloating. The high fibre content makes this possible, and can be enjoyed in a salad, stir fry, or even in a smoothie.
Not only is olive oil a great source of monounsaturated fats, but it is also packed with good cholesterol. Sprinkle it over your salad, salmon, or simply add a few drops into cold water for a complete body cleanse.
Did you know that oatmeal helps to burn calories as you eat? Enjoy them in the morning with flax seed, fresh fruit, and your favourite type of milk for a solid start to the day.
Aren’t avocados just amazing? They contain a large amount of monounsaturated fats which help to burn calories, and enhances the absorption of calcium.
Almonds, walnuts and pistachios are all great snack options which help to relieve the body of bad cholesterol, and curb a lot of sugary cravings.
Studies show that if you start your day with eggs (whether they’re scrambled or poached), then you’re less likely to binge on fatty foods. They are packed with proteins which will fill your tummy, but won’t feel like they’re weighing you down.
Ginger is most commonly used for its anti-inflammatory properties, and you can add it to almost every meal. Yum!
Since salmon is packed with omega-3 fatty acids, you know that its nutritional content is going to be good! It also helps to burn fat, as opposed to storing it.
Image via Image Fave
Diet, exercise and most importantly lack of free time are all big time contributors that could keep you from having that flat tummy. Although is it impossible to achieve? Belly fat comes down to eating right and exercise, plus our four tips on how to beat the fat for good. Belly fat can take on one of two forms. Subcutaneous fat which is visibly the external roll of skin that you can grab with your hands. Whereas visceral fat is found within your abdomen, and can often be wrapped around your organs.
Abdominal workouts are great for toning up any unwanted belly fat. Mostly lunges, sit ups, push ups and especially the plank are great ways to slowly tone your tummy without physically exerting yourself. Regular exercise and a healthy diet can transform your belly before you know it. Looking to burn some extra kilojoules? Try bikram yoga, where not only will the postures help you stretch and tone every muscle in your body, but the heat makes you sweat out those bad toxins in the system.
Change your diet
Eating fatty foods regularly won’t give you a flat tummy. Try to limit these types of meals instead as treats, and give your body some much needed nutrients instead. Foods like almonds, eggs and avocado are just a few suggestions that are packed with protein and essential fatty acids which will keep you full, instead of constantly snacking throughout the day. Drinking green tea is also a great way to end your meal, as it has plenty of antioxidants and works to quicken the metabolism and the way food is digested.
If you’re prone to belly bloating, this could possibly be caused by wheat allergies or lactose intolerance. Rather than self diagnosing, your local GP will run some tests that could confirm your suspicions. Dairy is the most common food allergy, and if you suffer from it, try to cut down on cheese and yoghurt and see if you notice a difference in your belly.
Don’t skip breakfast
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, since it is the first time in over eight hours that the body receives any vitamins or minerals overnight. By skipping breakfast and going straight into lunch, you’re more likely to snack on fatty foods throughout the remainder of the day. Eating a breakfast packed with protein is a fantastic since they keep you full until the next meal. Eating meals every few hours is sure to keep your body sustained and your metabolism at it’s best.
Image Source via Shutterstock
Australia’s states and territories have decided not to remove an unpopular tax on female sanitary products.
Australian sanitary products attract the 10 per cent goods and services tax (GST) because they are deemed non-essential. Condoms and sunscreen, however, are tax-free as they are more essential to a person’s well-being. Should Australian women challenge the government’s decision by holding a public demonstration, boycotting sanitary items and letting the blood run free?
Hundreds of women bleeding through their pants and on the backs of their dresses would change the government’s decision in the length of time it took them to run back to their parliamentary offices in horror. Very few women are that brave and it’s a shame, because bleeding into our underpants is something we do every month, unless you are a perfect person who would never let that kind of thing happen.
When I was at high school, we had a standard ritual among the girls. One friend would stand up, turn around and say, “Check me” and we would check the back of their dress for blood. Having an accidental bleed was the worst thing that could happen to a person and the “Check me” ritual was constant. We were vigilant. I didn’t get my period until year twelve and I still demanded a check in case it accidentally burst forth during math.
One of the great horrors of my teenage years was watching my sister walk down the aisle of a crowded bus with the tell-tale circular red blotch on the back of her school dress. In my mind, I raced slow-motion through that aisle in order to throw myself over that public disgrace. I once saw a girl at school with this blotch, a girl who never seemed to have any friends and hence roamed ‘unchecked’ down a hall. I grabbed her and explained she had a blood stain. She laughed and said, “You’re lying.” I had to secure both her arms and plead my seriousness, “There really is a stain.” Her face froze when she realized she had passed to the other side. She had become The One Who Bled.
I haven’t really loosened up about this. Where did we get the idea a sign of our fertility was public death? We all have our accidents. I once met a boyfriend’s parents for the first time and then promptly bled onto their kitchen chair. I did what anyone facing imminent disgrace would do and flipped the cushion when no one was looking. Not every woman is quite so paranoid. I shared a house with a woman who regularly hung her permanently-stained white undies up on the hills hoist, for all and sundry to see. I was mortified someone might think they were mine. I was also impressed she didn’t care.
In April, Harvard grad and drummer for M.I.A, Kiran Gandhi, ran the London Marathon while menstruating. Before the race, she got her period and not wanting to run twenty six miles with a tampon inside her, she decided to skip it. The period blood ran down her legs and as she crossed the line with her friends, her arms held high in the air to celebrate their achievement, the world’s media collectively wretched. She broke the unwritten rule and it launched a new movement: the Free Bleeding movement.
I suppose it is the equivalent of our mothers burning their bras, only less hygienic. She made a wonderful point, though. What we can’t see, can’t be discussed and therefore, the Australian legislative authorities can tax what they consider an optional item. Who wants to go first and bleed on the steps of parliament? It would rather stand there naked with a tampon string tucked neatly inside of me. That is how confronting the idea is. But should it be?
Modern women are busier than ever before; it’s not unusual for a busy, working mother to have to juggle a multitude of vital roles such as domestic goddess, kiddie wrangler, peacekeeper, chef, sock finder and husband wrangler – all before she hits her desk for a full day’s work at 9am.
And so burn-out can be swift; as women, we spend so much time looking after everyone else, we can so easily neglect our own self-care and well-being. When was the last time you took a mental-health day or “wellness day” for yourself?
Brisbane wellness advocate and hatha yoga instructor Heather Sartain, 55, (pictured) who’s just opened unisex boutique spa sanctuary, One Wybelenna, says as chief carers of the family, as is usually the case, women must regularly take time out for themselves. Heather’s interest in health and well-being extends back to her training as a registered nurse.
One Wybelenna, based at Brookfield in Brisbane’s inner-west, offers the most extensive selection of Ayurveda Aromatherapy products in Queensland. Set amid landscaped gardens, it’s an urban oasis just 12km from the CBD.
“It is so important to take care of ourselves so that we will have the energy and resources to care for others,” Heather says. “This self-care takes different forms for individual personalities and body types. Maybe it’s a gentle yoga class to help to clear the mind for some, while others would prefer to run, or play tennis with a group of friends, read a book or walk in nature.
“Whatever is your ‘timeout’ activity of choice, it is important to do something for yourself, no matter how small, each day. We must also eat healthy, wholesome foods to nourish our bodies. Eat live food; lots of plant foods and fresh foods, not dead, packaged and preservative laden foods.
“We must breathe, mindfully, deeply and frequently, not just the short shallow breaths that become so much a part of a busy life. And we must sleep well. Our bodies need rest to restore and rebalance. At One Wybelenna, we offer the perfect environment and treatments to assist our guests to relax and rejuvenate complementing their lifestyle choices.”
Heather, who practises yoga and meditation daily, says beauty treatments are also a great way for women (and men) to gain calm and zen in today’s crazy busy world.
“At One Wybelenna, our rituals incorporate the maintenance treatments in a serene environment, making the whole experience a sensory journey,” Heather says. “Massage should be acknowledged as being very important to our general well-being rather than an indulgence. The sense of touch is vital to life and helps reduce the levels of stress that build up physically and emotionally.”
Her favourite treatment is a 90 minute Custom Facial, which begins with a skin assessment and includes a back and neck massage. She also highly recommends a Subtle Energies Ayurveda Aromatherapy package of Blissful Marma Massage combined with the Mukha Chikitsa facial or the Germaine de Capuccini Crystal and Pearl Elixir. “Both of these rituals combine bodywork with facials and induce the deepest sense of wellbeing and rejuvenation,” Heather says.
And blokes aren’t forgotten – they can also treat themselves to the Amor for Men Facial. This treatment starts with a back, shoulder and neck massage and includes a 24-step Shiatsu Zen facial massage and detoxifying mask. One Wybelenna’s professional therapists also use Germaine de Capuccini skin care products.
The spa is open for bookings Tuesday-Saturday. Visit www.onewybelenna.com.
I am a reality television junkie – and it hurts to admit that. It’s pretty shameful to say that I love watching TV shows in which either a) celebrities go about their daily lives, b) normal people get into a competition for something, or c) outrageous people are actually paid to party and do stupid things. I like to justify it by saying that it comes from my own stressful lifestyle where watching trashy TV shows is like time out for my brain.
However, it’s impossible to turn my brain off completely and that’s why when watching The Bachelor the other night, I thought about how completely immoral and stupid it is to pit women against each other for a man they don’t even know. But of course, this is obvious, and often why the show is opposed by feminists and anyone with a brain.
It’s the fact that strong women still put themselves in this situation, where they are quite literally competing against other women for the affections of a man that they barely know. While watching the show from the comfort of your own home, you actually feel uncomfortable in the way that these women are portrayed as petty and jealous, with every move and look scrutinised purely for the entertainment of the audience.
For the women on the show, being in The Bachelor mansion could be having a detrimental effect on their self esteem. Putting all their energy into trying to win the affections of a man and whether they are successful or not in gaining his attention and affection is almost a cry for help regarding self-worth and self-esteem.
However, it could go both ways. On one hand, these women could be so sure of themselves that whether or not they win a competition to get a boyfriend will not affect them or the way they see themselves. On the other hand, they could be taking to heart the producer’s choices and/or Sam’s choices and making mental notes of all the things that they deem not good enough to land them a man on a television show.
In that respect, we do have to praise the women who leave the show and tell their last piece to camera in a way that empowers them to get back out there and be themselves to find the right man for them.
It’s a bitter world out there and while I do love a good Bachie romance and am looking forward to Sam Frost killing it on The Bachelorette, we do need to ask ourselves whether someone’s self esteem should be worth our entertainment.
Images via popsugar.com and yahoo.com
Are you stressed by work, family, or the non-stop obligations of daily life?
Rather than resorting to over the counter methods of stress relief, try Acupressure which is an alternative medicine technique most similar to acupuncture. Energy points are taken very seriously in Asian Body Therapies, and this technique helps to relax and de-stress the primary meridians of the body.
How does it work?
Traditional Chinese medicine states that acupoints are found in various locations on the body, and inside them contain energy. This energy which is also known as qi, holds significance because it flows through the entire body – from head to toe. When any of these acupoints are blocked-out or out of balance, it can result in illness; anything from a simple headache to chronic aches and pains.
What are the main points?
Location: Between the eyebrows
Located right between the eyebrows, this is often dubbed as the window to the soul. Apply two fingers onto this area to relieve headaches, anxiety, and even reducing the side effects of hot flashes.
Location: Bridge of the nose
If you’re suffering from a debilitating headache, migraine, or even a hangover from a boozy night, then drilling bamboo can help to cure all this and more.
Facial Beauty Point
Location: Below the cheekbones
This area is located below the cheekbone and aligns directly with the pupil. It helps to relax tired eyes which are swollen and bloodshot.
Sea of Tranquility
Location: Above the breastbone
A natural healing point known as the Sea of Tranquility, which helps to create an inner peace for both women and men suffering from depression, increased levels of insomnia, and even sleep apnea. Use your fingertips and put some pressure over the centre of the breastbone until you reach an indentation.
Sea of Energy
Location: Below the belly button
The Sea of Energy is another sacred chakra which delivers primary energy to the entire body. Position your fingers below the navel, and apply some pressure for whilst standing up. This offers great relief for people suffering from menstrual cramps, digestive issues, and bloating.
Shady Side of The Mountain
Location: Inner side of the knee
Reduce swelling and inflammation by treating this area with two fingers. Apply some pressure until the area starts to soften up.
Three Yin Crossing
Location: Above the inner ankle
Ideal for reducing cramps and water retention, especially if you don’t want to stick to conventional Western medicine. Use gentle to medium pressure for best results – nothing too intense!
Location: Lower wrist
Once you’ve found this area, gently massage away any tender feelings to treat nausea and impending morning sickness.
Image via Spanssure Medical
While it might feel impossible to get a good night’s sleep nowadays, there are a few ways to switch-off your body and relax before bedtime. Beauty sleep is certainly no myth – after all, a woman needs her eight hours per-night, right?
A warm cup of tea is the perfect way to unwind after a tiresome day at work. Enjoy Pukka’s dreamy new blend which is caffeine-free and packed with ethically sourced, 100 per cent organically grown ingredients to relax and unwind.
Pukka Night Time Tea, $7.95
Make sure all phones, tablets and laptops are turned off at least two hours before you hop into bed. The constant light could be harming your eyes and be a big reason why you can’t fall asleep naturally. Instead, read a relaxing book which is the perfect way to relax.
Sometimes not enough physical activity is the reason you can’t get to sleep at night – your body simply isn’t tired enough! Why not choose a local yoga class, or even take your dog for an evening walk to the park?
Could your diet be the main culprit when it comes to bad sleep cycles? All those refined sugars and trans-fats could actually be keeping you up at night and risking your long-term health. Make small switches to your diet and remember to drink lots of water to flush out those toxins.
Keep away from energy drinks which are packed with caffeine and really bad for your heart. These drinks might give you a burst of energy in the late afternoon, but your body will crash soon afterwards. Try something like fruit-infused water which is a natural way to fuel the body.
Image via Pinterest
Chia seeds are one of the healthiest foods you can add into your diet. They are packed with omega-3 fatty acids which are crucial for healthy brain function. Add just a one tablespoon of chia seeds into your diet to receive all the benefits of this remarkable superfood.
Chia seeds are associated with weight loss since they are packed with fibre and provide more than 40 per cent of your daily intake. It can help to decrease bloating and will keep you fuller for longer.
They are also packed with omega-3 fatty acids which assist in healthy brain and heart health.
Chia seeds are also beneficial when it comes to keeping blood sugar at a healthy level. Enjoy them in your breakfast cereal, in your smoothie, or even in a glass of water.
Who knew that chia seeds are also rich in calcium and phosphorus? They are ideal for someone suffering from arthritis and can assist in healthy bone function.
Incorporate chia seeds into your diet if you are suffering from a cold or flu. They boast many anti-inflammatory properties which can help to get your health back on track.
Ever feel sluggish or bloated after a big meal? Enjoy one glass of water with chia seeds to regulate your body from the inside out.
For a boost of energy in the afternoon, enjoy a snack with added chia seeds to get you past 3:30itis.
Image via Bon Appetit