Don’t “detox” your vagina or uterus with a bag of herbs in your vagina. Really.

Dr. Jen Gunter

I woke up to someone forwarding this tweet:

Yes, some company is selling tiny bags of herbs (they call them pearls) to stuff in the vagina for 3 days to cleanse your uterus or shrink your fibroids or treat bacterial vaginosis or tighten your vagina.

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This is not only pointless it could be very dangerous. Here’s why.

Your uterus and vagina wants you to leave them alone

Your uterus isn’t tired or depressed or dirty and your vagina has not misplaced its chakra. They want no real help from you unless there is something wrong and they will tell you there is something wrong by bleeding profusely or itching or cramping badly or producing an odor. Don’t blame malaise, or fatigue on your uterus or vagina (unless you are anemic…

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No Booze Challenge

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Happy New Year!  I hope that you thoroughly enjoyed yourself this past holiday season.  Now that we are past all the holiday gatherings and great feasts that accompany those gatherings, it’s time to get back into the swing of things.  With this new year, many people will make resolutions and goals specifically pertaining to achieving a higher level of health.

Well, I have an exciting challenge for you to try that is backed by a scientific study.   The challenge is to abstain from alcohol for 5 weeks.  I know that may sound like an impossible a daunting for some of you, but just think of the health benefits of completing the challenge.

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There was a small study conducted in London with 14 participants.  These people are relatively healthy self-proclaimed “normal” drinkers.  Ten of the participants decided to give up alcohol, while the remaining 4 continued to indulge in spirits.

The results at the end of the 5 weeks were astonishing to say the least.  There weren’t any significant improvements among those who continued to drink, but the non-drinkers reaped many benefits.  The was a significant decrease in cholesterol and liver fat levels.  Lower cholesterol is important for cardiovascular health and a decrease in liver fat cells helps to slow the progression of liver deterioration.  The group had improved blood sugar regulation, which lowers the risk for Type 2 Diabetes.  On average the non-drinking group noticed a weight loss of about 3 pounds, as well.  The group also reported an increase in the quality of sleep they had each night, although this result is subjective.

Isn’t that exciting?!

Your liver deserves a break after all the hard work it’s been doing to digest all that holiday food, detox your body and keep your hormones balanced, so send it on a vacation.  Recruit some family and friends to take the challenge with you so that you have a support system and accountability partner.

Let’s make 2015 our best year yet!

Remember ladies, keep a healthy demeanor, both inside and out! 🙂

***Here’s the link to the original article: http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg22129502.600-our-liver-vacation-is-a-dry-january-really-worth-it.html?page=1

Herpes

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Working in a STD clinic, it has come to my attention that many women (and guys!) are confused about the Herpes virus.  Many of my patients don’t really know anything besides it’s an STD and they don’t want it.  And while that’s an ok start (hey, it’s better than nothing), there are a few essential things you should have in your knowledge base.

I will discuss the 2 major stains of the virus that most people are concerned about, although there are currently 8 strains of the virus that can affect humans.  Herpes is very contagious and often results in a life-long infection. So here’s the scary and maybe comforting part for some of you, a great deal of Americans are infected with the virus, but aren’t aware of it.  Yikes!

There is NO CURE for herpes, but luckily there is medicine available to help alleviate symptoms and make it less likely that you will spread herpes to your partner.

So here’s a quick guide to Herpes.


HSV 1 – Herpes Simplex Virus 1

This strain of the virus is most commonly spread from an infected person to the next through oral contact.  It is an infection that causes small, painful, fluid-filled blisters or sores on the lips, mouth, and/or gums.  You may have heard of them referred to as fever blisters or cold sores.  Recurrent outbreaks can affect the mouth or other parts of the face.

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HSV 2- Herpes Simplex 2

This is the strain that everyone is afraid of contracting.  Having Herpes isn’t a walk in the park or something joyful, no matter what those Valtrex commercials portray.  I don’t know of anyone running on the beach or laughing uncontrollably because they have genital herpes.  😦 HSV-2 is more commonly known as genital herpes because outbreaks generally occur in the genital area (penis and vagina), the butt, or thighs.  An outbreak is usually characterized by those painful blisters and sores similar to the ones associated with HSV-1.  Herpes is spread through sexual activity (vagina, penis, anus, mouth, etc.) and skin to skin contact.

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Basically, the virus enters the body through skin or mucus membranes (dry humping, kissing, penetration, etc.).  Days later, one may notice painful fluid-filled blisters forming.  That oozing fluid from the blister is actually highly contagious and contains the herpes virus.  The blisters will eventually become an ulcer.  Once the initial outbreak has occurred, the virus then makes itself comfortable and lies dormant or “goes to sleep” in the nerves near the spine.  There are certain triggers that may reactivate the virus and “wake it up”  Those triggers include stress, smoking (yet another GREAT reason to quit), or changes in weather.  Once reactivated, herpes makes its way along the nerve highway and back to the skin to cause an unsightly outbreak of painful blisters.

Some people can tell when they’re going to have an outbreak by a tingling sensation, pain or itching in the area up to 10 days before visible symptoms appear.


It’s always a good idea to abstain from sex or only engage in sexual activities with someone who isn’t infected.  But realistically, always use latex condoms wit every sexual encounter and activity and practice monogamy.

Also, have an open and honest discussion with your healthcare provider to discuss your risks and get tested for STDs/STIs.  Always know your status.

Until next time, remember to keep a healthy demeanor, both inside and out.

🙂

Contemplating Pregnancy? Take Folic Acid

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Healthcare professionals have been advising women of childrearing age to take a multivitamin with folic acid for years.  We already know that incorporating folic acid into your diet even if you’re not pregnant helps prevent neural tube defects such as spina bifida in babies.  Well a new study from England has found another great reason to take folic acid supplements.

Women in the British study were separated into two groups: women who began taking folic acid BEFORE they were pregnant and women who began folic acid supplements once they realized they were pregnant. The results from comparing the two groups of women showed that beginning folic acid before conception reduced the chances of the women giving birth to a baby who is small for their gestational age.  Basically, the babies’ weight were on target for what was expected of them at the time they were born.

Based on this study, it would be beneficial for women of childrearing age to take a multivitamin that includes folic acid daily and at least throughout the first trimester of the pregnancy.  Even if you’re not planning to get pregnant in the near future, take the folic acid anyway.  Remember, nearly half of all pregnancies in this country are unplanned, so it’s better to be safe than sorry.

When purchasing a multi-vitamin, make sure to read the label.  There should be 0.4 mg of folic acid or 400 mcg to increase the likelihood of a healthy weight, spina bifida free baby.

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If you aren’t ready for a child yet, please make an appointment with your healthcare provider to discuss safe and effective methods of contraception to avoid an unplanned pregnancy.

Remember ladies, keep a healthy demeanor, both inside and out! 🙂

A prescription for Lifestyle Modification?

 

Hippocrates: ‘Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.’

 

In a world where a pill or some type of medicine is prescribed for everything, it’s refreshing to know that a more natural, holistic movement is starting.  Finally, medical professionals and patients alike are taking it back to Hippocrates’ original prescription for various ailments.

A prescription for lifestyle modifications is what’s really needed if we want to become individuals and in turn a healthier society.  Medications aren’t always going to solve a problem or even keep it from reoccurring.  This is why I counsel my patients on different changes they can make in their everyday lives that has the potential to have a huge impact on their health.  For instance, I encourage my patients to increase their water consumption to half their body weight in ounces, engage in some type of physical activity for at least 30 minutes 5 times a week, avoid/limit alcohol, pee urinate before and after sex, avoid douching, etc.  Lifestyle modifications are the key to both preventing and treating an ailment sometimes.

 

Dr. Kim A. Williams tried an experiment where he switched to a vegan diet in an effort to treat his high cholesterol levels.  Within 6 weeks, his LDL (the bad cholesterol) dropped from 170 to 90 with this simple lifestyle change.  Now I know that becoming a vegan isn’t a viable or even appealing option for everyone (I’m definitely not making that change anytime soon), but small changes here and there can help you become a better, healthier you in the long run.  Limit the amounts of red meats and fried foods in your diet.  Eat more fruits and vegetables.  Take the stairs,  instead of the elevator.  Drink more water! Find a physical activity that you enjoy (if it’s sex, make sure you’re practicing safe sex) and try to do that 3-5 times a week.  Learn to manage your stress more effectively. Your body and loved ones will thank you later.  Who knows? You may even inspire someone else to begin a healthy journey of their own.

 Follow these tips to reduce your risk of heart disease and many other illnesses:

  • Exercise
  • Incorporate a plant-based diet (more fruits and veggies!)
  • Manage your stress better

Keep these suggestions in mind if and when your healthcare provider diagnoses you with something.  Have an open and honest discussion about what can be done to help yourself.   You are a partner in your healthcare, not just a spectator.

 

Remember to keep a healthy demeanor, both inside and out! 🙂

 

http://www.medpagetoday.com/Cardiology/Prevention/46860 Here’s a link to Dr. Williams’ blog regarding his switch to vegan.

The Future of Birth Control

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Extra! Extra! Read all about it!  There are some exciting, new developments in the works in the contraceptive world for women.  Unfortunately, there still isn’t a birth control method for men besides condoms, but this new method may be even better.

A group of mad scientists geniuses have been working on creating an implantable microchip that women can have placed as their birth control method of choice for up to 16 years!  The microchip will contain a progestin called levonorgestrel, a similar form of hormone that is already being used in the Mirena and Skyla intrauterine devices (IUDs).  The device is designed to release a small amount of the hormone daily to keep women from experiencing an unintended pregnancy.

What’s even more cool about these microchips is that they can be remote controlled and gives the woman the option to control when she wants the chip to be turned on and off.  The woman decides when she wants to start and stop the method to allow for pregnancy or just to get a break from the hormones. 

This new device can potentially revolutionize women’s health and the way we approach birth control.  These endeavors are backed by the Gates Millennium Program, so you know it’s official. LoL

Well, be on the look out for that. 

Check out the article at: http://bringmethenews.com/2014/07/08/goodbye-birth-control-pills-hello-remote-controlled-microchip/

 

Remember ladies, to keep a healthy demeanor, inside and out!

 

 

Sexting in Surgery

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So apparently, in addition to being nervous about having a medical procedure performed, you now have to worry about the doctors using their cell phones during the procedure.  According to The Washington state Medical Quality Assurance Commission, they have decided to suspend the license of an anesthesiologist for sending sexually explicit text messages, or sexting as the kids would call it, during his surgeries.  For those of you who don’t know, sexting can be either sending sexually explicit photos, usually of one’s genitals and breasts or using text to talk dirty.

The commission also claims that this doctor used his authority to access medical records for his own sexual indulgence (you can draw your own conclusions there) and he was engaging in sexual activities on the job.

What ever happened to professionalism and self restraint?  What about the ethical pledge he took when he received his medical degree?  smh Doctors Healthcare professionals are supposed to put the patient at ease and assure them that they’re in good hands, not cause more anxiety in already stressful situation.  Too bad his hands were too full with his “instrument” to be a good healthcare provider.

While it’s unclear if his inappropriate behavior had a direct effect on any of his patients, you can rest assured the Commission will get to the bottom of this scandal.

In the meantime, do a thorough background check on your healthcare providers to ensure that you’ll receive the excellent care you deserve.

Remember ladies, to keep a healthy demeanor, both inside and out. 🙂


 

Amazing Nipple Tattoos

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Breast cancer survivors can now rejoice and breathe a sigh of relief.  A tattoo artist in Finksburg, Maryland is giving hope to breast cancer survivors who have had mastectomies and reconstructive surgery to have breasts again.  The surgeries are an important step in the journey to overcoming cancer and trying to live a normal life again.  For some women, having breasts were tied into their identity as a woman.  Without breasts, a woman may feel incomplete and self conscious.  Often times, women opt to have reconstructive surgery and may get implants in an effort to have breasts again.  Unfortunately, in the process they lose their nipples.  While advances in medicine and surgery offer decent solutions, surgeons weren’t trained to recreate a realistic nipple and areola. 

This is where tattoo artist, Vinnie Myers, comes into the picture.  He is able to create works of art through tattooing 3D nipples for breast cancer survivors.  His amazing shading technique gives him the ability to give the illusion of real areolas on the breast.  No matter what your skin tone is from pale Caucasian skin to charcoal Black, you can rest assured that you’ll leave satisfied.  While the price may seem a bit expensive at first glance ($600-800), keep in mind that a boost to a woman’s self esteem and confidence level is priceless. 

Clink the link below to check out a video documenting a woman’s trip to get new nipples and areolas from Vinnie.

http://nyti.ms/1mKFxst