Category Archives: Women

Study Says Sedentary Lifestyle the Main Culprit in Obesity

Americans have heard time and again that eating right and getting exercise will help prevent or reverse obesity. While some argue that obesity statistics have begun to plateau in America, the condition can still be considered an epidemic. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, over one third of adults in the U.S. can be considered obese. Also, Americans spent around $147 billion on obesity-related medical care in 2008. The condition, which is considered to be completely preventable, increases the risk of diabetes, stroke, heart disease and even some types of cancer.

But what is more important – eating a healthy diet or engaging in physical activity? According to a new study published in the American Journal of Medicine, lack of exercise is the main reason we’re getting fat.

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Healthy, Yet Obese – Is it Possible?

Controversy has surrounded the debate over whether people can be considered “healthy” even if they’re obese. While some argue that it’s perfectly possible to be in good health while carrying many extra pounds of weight, others say that obesity itself is a major health danger, even if an individual is free of the types of conditions that typically accompany it. Typical obesity-related conditions include high blood cholesterol, high blood sugar and high blood pressure. A new study conducted at Toronto’s Mount Sinai Hospital found that people who are obese, in comparison to those who are of a normal weight, are about 24% more likely to die from any cause over a 10-year period, or to have a heart problem during this same timeframe. The two groups compared above had no metabolic problems at all – only their weight differed.

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Miscarriage Risk Rises with BPA Exposure

BPA (or bisphenol A), the chemical found in certain types of food packaging products, may be linked with an increased risk of miscarriage, according to a new study conducted at Stanford University Medical Center. During the study, a team of researchers led by obstetrics and gynecology professor Dr. Ruth Lathi gathered blood samples from 114 women. All of the women were between four and five weeks pregnant at the time the samples were collected. The researchers then measured the amount of BPA in the samples taken from women who went on to give birth, as well as those who experienced a miscarriage. The subjects in the study with the lowest levels of BPA in their blood were about 80% less likely to have a miscarriage than women with the highest levels of BPA.

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Quitting Smoking While Pregnant Improves Kids’ Emotions

A recent study conducted in the Netherlands adds another item to the list of reasons why women who become pregnant should quit smoking. According to their study, moms-to-be who quit – even if quitting happens after pregnancy begins – bear infants who have fewer emotional problems as young children. The researchers examined brain scans of 226 children who were 6 years old at the time of the study. Half of the children’s mothers smoked during pregnancy, while half did not. Exactly 17 of the mothers who smoked during their pregnancy quit smoking shortly after finding out they’d become pregnant. The good news is that smoking rates among pregnant women have declined steadily in recent decades; about 25% of pregnant women smoked in 1980, while just 12% did in 2000.

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77% of Women Breast-Feed Their Babies

More women are breast-feeding their babies today than they were just a decade ago, according to a new report from the CDC, or Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In the year 2000, 71% of mothers reported breast-feeding their newborn babies, and by 2010, this figure increased to 77%. The increase in breast-feeding rates for babies up to 6 months of age was even more significant. About 34% of mothers said they breast-fed their babies until they were 6 months old in 2000, while 50% said the same in 2010. Of this 50%, around 16% reported breast-feeding exclusively, while other women supplemented with formula. Finally, 27% of women said they continued to breast-feed their baby after a full year in 2010, while just 16% did in 2000.

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