Category Archives: Women Health

What Can I Learn About Womens Health And Fitness

There are many different options for women and women’s fitness training that are available. A lot depends on what your fitness goals are. This will also encompass how long you are giving yourself or have to get into shape.

How much weight you are looking to lose and if you are looking just to tone up or lose weight too. But with all the options that are available for women’s fitness training, it should be fairly easy to find one that will suit your personal needs.

One option that women tend to really like for women’s fitness training are aerobics classes. Your local gym or sometimes a YMCA center usually offers these. These are great for losing weight, because the fat burns off a lot easier with aerobics. However if you are looking to tone up you will need to add some weight training to the mix as well.

Your best bet is to find a class that you can enjoy and that will work for you. A lot of the classes will offer lower impact and higher impact varieties, so choose which one would be easier for you. All in all there are a pretty wide variety of classes to choose from and you are bound to find one that will work for you and your fitness goals and needs.

Something else that is a good option for women’s fitness training is a gym. In fact there are even all women’s gyms that are out there, if you prefer. This can help you with your confidence, not having to worry about men being around and such.

This is also great because a lot of the exercises and equipment are geared specifically towards women and their needs. You may also want to choose a gym that will allow you take advantage of a personal trainer. This can help you get a better workout that is just for your needs.

Yet another option for women’s fitness training is purchasing home gym equipment. This can be a little expensive but worth it in the long run. This is mostly for those who don’t have the time to get out to a gym on a regular basis. Home gyms are also a good option for those who don’t feel comfortable working out in front of other people. There are many good ones out there and even some that may be geared specifically towards women and their personal workout needs.

Women Health

Since the 60s, smoking women has continued to grow: the proportion of smokers rose from 10 to 22% in 40 years on the 15 million smokers in USA. The women smoke more and more and earlier. The first cigarette is usually taken between 14 and 16 years. Cigarette smoke passes from the lungs to the brain within 10 seconds, carrying so much faster than would intravenous injection of illicit drugs. Smoking cigarettes send some 4,000 chemicals to the body.

Tobacco and gynecological disorders

Smoking decreases the secretion of estrogen. It may therefore be responsible for menstrual disorders with irregularities and pain. There is also often a change of tone of voice, which becomes hoarse, and an increase of hairs. Menopause occurs 1 to 2 years earlier than average among smokers. Hot flashes are more intense and the risk of osteoporosis is increased. Tobacco also promotes the development of precancerous lesions of the cervix.

Tobacco and skin

Due to a lack of oxygenation of the skin, smokers are more often dull complexion and “clouded”. The cellular exchanges have slowed and the waste is not eliminated. The skin loose his radiance and elasticity. Wrinkles appear prematurely, with 10 to 20 years ahead, especially at the lips. Smoking stimulates the production of free radicals that damage the elastin and collagen.

Tobacco and the pill

35% of women aged 20 to 44 years who take contraceptive smoke, increasing from 4 to 10 times the risk of cardiovascular problems. Combining a contraceptive with cigarettes is a major health hazard, especially past 35 years. Indeed, nicotine promotes deposition of fat in the blood vessels and damages arteries. The blood thickens and the risk of thrombosis, stroke and cerebral vascular accident (stroke) is accentuated. These evils are aggravated by contraceptives.

Smoking and Pregnancy

Cigarette smoking decreases by 50% female fertility: thickens the cervical mucus, preventing sperm progression, lack of estrogen reduces the quality of the uterine wall and restricts blood flow necessary for the implantation of the egg. Smoking increases by 3 the risk of miscarriage, and by 2 ectopic pregnancies and premature births. There is also stunted fetus that is not well oxygenated. Its weight is generally lower than 200 g at birth. In addition, smokers lactating produce 25% less milk than non-smokers.

Tobacco and weight

Smoking reduce the taste and smell. In addition, nicotine stimulates the nervous system that causes a cut-hunger, slows the storage of fat in adipocytes and artificially increases energy expenditure to 200 calories per day compared to non-smoker. The smokers have a weight lower than they would if they do not smoke (around 4 kg). So when you stop smoking, you just go back to your normal weight. No need to worry! However physical activity is still recommended to stabilize the weight. If you start to gain to much weight, try to eat better by cutting in the fat and salt.

It may be a good idea to consult a dietetist to help stabilize your weight while you stop smoking. Consulting a dietetist is a sure way to establish a healthy and balanced diet. Using dangerous product like laxative and purgative are dangerous and not the solution to long lasting weight loss!

Hydration for Womens Health

I would like to share with you the importance of hydration that will help you insure maximum health and wellness. You must drink eight to ten glasses of water a day. I know you have heard this time and time again. I understand completely! I know how difficult it is to drink all that water in one day. Then start all over again the next morning. I used to think the same way until I found ways to change it up and get it down. Now I look forward to drinking water. Believe it or not!

Last year I jetted off to France with my phrase book in hand to watch the largest sporting event in the world Le Tour De France. The cyclists that compete in the tour are some of the greatest athletes in the world. But what I notice about each cyclist, their family and friends was very enlightening. Each and every one of them drank water almost twenty four hours a day.
I am an athlete myself and I understand the importance of water while playing a sport, but what was amazing is they always had water in their hand and were constantly drinking it. When they were sitting at a café, during dinner, and just socializing with the fans, they were always drinking and hydrating themselves. It hit home with me. These men that are the best conditioned and in the best health drank water. At that moment, I purchased a bottle of water and have not stopped drinking.

The recommendation of eight to ten eight ounce glasses of water will help ensure that you body has adequate water to keep it working properly. If you would drink at the very least eight glasses filled with eight ounces of water each day you will feel better. Your skin will be softer, suppler, your joints will feel better, be lubricated, and your overall health and wellness will improve. Drinking water helps to move the environmental toxins out of your body. Water suppresses the appetite naturally and helps the body metabolize stored fat.
Now, the next time you have difficultly drinking your 8 glasses of water I want you to think of ways to change it.

-Add a twist of Lemon.

-Add a splash of cranberry juice.

-Add a little (not the whole packet) of Crystal Light

-Think of low calorie juice to add to change the flavor.

Womens Health

During pregnancy your nutrition needs are going to increase. Even before becoming pregnant it is a good idea to make every effort to start eating healthy and taking a women’s multivitamin. A prenatal multivitamin is a better choice during pregnancy.

Let’s start with the recommended daily intake of food during pregnancy.

DURING PREGNANCY :

7 or more Fruits and Vegetables (3 fruits/4 vegetables)

Fruits and Vegetables high in vitamin C are the best. These include strawberries, melons, oranges, papaya, tomatoes, peppers, greens, and broccoli.

9 or more Whole Grain Products

A fortified breakfast cereal containing iron and folic acid is the best way to start each day. Enriched bread, rice, pasta, and any whole grain product are your other choices.

4 or more dairy products

Low-fat milk or non-fat milk, yogurt, and cheese are the obvious choices.

60 grams of protein (two or more 2-3 ounce portions of lean meat)

Other sources of protein include eggs, nuts, dried beans, and peas. Do not eat undercooked or uncooked meat or fish. (NO SUSHI) Do not eat deli luncheon meats

PREGNANCY NUTRITION FACTS

Fish

Some fish are higher in mercury content than others. Mercury can cause problems with your growing baby’s brain and nervous system.

Fish to avoid completely:

shark
swordfish
king mackerel
golden snapper
white snapper

Fish eating limitations:
Limit your intake of fish to 12 ounces a week
Limit your intake of white tuna or tuna steak to 6 ounces a week

Safest fish to eat:
shrimp
salmon
catfish

light tuna

Weight

Calorie intake should only be increased by 300 a day during pregnancy for the average woman.
Weight gain should be around 28-40 pounds for women that are underweight at pregnancy.
Women that are overweight at pregnancy should gain only 15-25 pounds.
Weight gain should be around 2-4 pounds the first trimester and 3-4 pounds a month for the remaining time.
Excess weight gain is hard to lose after pregnancy because your body’s fat increases up to one third during pregnancy.
Breast feeding burns 500 or more calories per day making it easier to lose weight.
Consult your health care provider for your specific healthy weight gain.

Vitamins and Minerals

Check the RDA chart for your needs during pregnancy.

Folic Acid is a special concern because a deficiency can lead to neural tube birth defects. Your multivitamin should contain 400 mcg of folic acid. Birth defects happen before you even know you’re pregnant so always take a multivitamin with folic acid during child bearing age.

Vitamin C taken in doses over 500 mg/d can lead to your baby being born dependent on large quantities of vitamin C.

Iron is also of special concern because the average American diet does not provide enough iron during pregnancy. If your prenatal multivitamin does not contain enough iron your doctor will prescribe an additional supplement. Iron is needed for you and the baby to have healthy teeth, bones, and blood.

Water is often overlooked during pregnancy but it is vital for you and your baby. It carries the nutrients from your body to the baby and it helps prevent constipation, hemorrhoids, swelling and urinary tract infection. A minimum of 6 eight ounce glasses a day is required. Juice can count toward your 6 glasses but be careful of the added calories. Any drink containing caffeine actually reduces the fluid in your body and cannot count towards your 6 glasses.

Calcium is needed by you and the baby for strong teeth and bones. During pregnancy you need 1,000 mg/d and 1,300 mg/d if you are less than 18 years old.

Alcohol Consumption

There is no safe time or amount of alcohol to consume during pregnancy. No alcohol is the only way to insure the health of your baby. Alcohol you drink goes to your baby through the umbilical cord. Alcohol affects the baby’s growth, the baby’s brain, and can cause birth defects. These effects will remain with your unborn child for his/her entire life. FASD (Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders) is the name given to anyone affected by their mother’s alcohol consumption during pregnancy. Problems learning, memory retention, and hearing are just a few things that alcohol can do to your child.

Caffeine

Caffeine in large quantities can lead to low weight babies. It also reduces the amount of vital water in your body. Although not yet proven, some studies suggest that it may harm the fetus. While not as dangerous as alcohol it should still be avoided.

Diabetics

Diabetics can have perfectly normal babies like every other woman. There are a just a few things you need to be careful of.
1. Keep your blood sugar under control for a minimum of 3 months before becoming pregnant.
2. Make sure you get enough folic acid at all times during your child bearing years (400 mcg/d).
3. Don’t let your blood sugar get too high during pregnancy. This can lead to birth defects or your baby having blood sugar level problems

Ways To Control Morning Sickness

*Eat 6 small meals instead of 3 large ones

*Don’t go without eating for long periods of time

*Don’t drink fluids with your meals

*Don’t eat greasy, spicy, or fried foods

*Avoid unpleasant smells

*Don’t get over tired

Hello, my name is Frank Keller and I am the owner of the Women’s Health Supplements website. Don’t be fooled by the name, we are not another vitamin retailer. All articles are not just reviewed by me they are written by me. From artificial sweeteners and bottled water to pregnancy nutrition every word is written to help you make an informed decision about your health. Content is chosen from your suggestions.

Women’s Top 3 Health Concerns and Their Remedies

Women are suffering from one disease or other due to wrong eating habits, high lifestyle, carelessness and ignorance. Every 3rd women has concerns about the problems or illness they are suffering from.

Here are top 3 health concerns for women along with their remedies:

1. Type 2 Diabetes– This is one common type of diabeties which changes the way your body uses glucose. The main reasons responsible for the disease are; Heredity, improper intake of food, overweight, lack of exercise in daily routine and above all your age. You must take proper care of the disease other wise it may turn fatal.

REMEDIES:

· Start doing regular exercise and loose weight if you are excessively fat.

· Avoid intake of sweets and food containing sugar completely.

· Start taking a healthy diet full of fruits and salad.

· Consult a doctor if the problem is major.

2. Heart Disease– It is a myth that because a man works everyday and women don’t, so heart problem has no connection with women. Infact it is a major risk to many women these days.

REMEDIES:

· Most importantly go for check up every time your doctor calls you and do not take it lightly.

· You must quit smoking immediately. Avoid intake of alcohol too and try to limit it to social gatherings only.

· Physical exercise is very important. But do not go for rigorous exercise plan. Get your doctor do that for your and follow the program strictly.

· Take healthy diet. Avoid junk and spicy food as much as you can. Instead fill up your diet plan with proteins, carbs, fruits, veggies and fiber.

3.Kidney Diseases: Often diabetes patients face kidney failure; High blood pressure is also responsible for the disease.

REMEDIES:

· Most importantly, consult your doctor and go for check ups regularly. Do not miss on any of your medicines and vaccinations.

· Quit alcohol for ever. Alcohol for kidney and in most of the cases leads to kidney failure.

· Exercise regularly and loose those extra pounds from your body.

· Do not consume salt in heavy quantities.

National Women’s Health Information

You can find a plenty of national women’s health information in numerous websites which deal with it. It is very important for you to get fair information concerning women’s health issues and the newest breakthroughs in fitness, alternative medicine and nutrition.

There are some health and fitness newsletters which talk about such topics like alternative medicines. They also show how such alternative solutions can be good for the mind, body as well as soul.

Women frequently believe in myths with regard to some form of alternative medicine. One can look on some websites where a lot of information is available on a specific subject. The information provided in most of the newsletters is given by experts like doctors and psychologists, and can be advantageous to all readers.

Common Topics

Try to take a look at some of topics that are commonly found in national women’s health information. Fat loss as well as cholesterol reduction is a usual subject and women want to know about new ways in doing it. Otherwise there is a trend of consuming natural supplements and herbs against disease as well as for good health.

What You Should Avoid

On the National Women’s Health Information Center forum, there are also discussions about all that is harmful. The harm that is caused by fast food as well as beverages, or some prescription drugs is reiterated, so that they can be avoided. A clinical psychologist is often accessible to give advice to women regarding aging process, menopause or arthritis.

Women and Health Journals Explained

There are many important issues when it comes to women health and so whether you are a woman yourself or not it is important that you are keen on these matters.

Using a women and health journal may very well be one of the best things that you ever do for yourself. Regardless of whether you are studying the issue of women health or would just like to learn about it more for your own benefit, using a women and health journal will offer you many advantages.

A women and health journal will be just about the most reliable and informative resources available to you, and one that you should definitely use to your advantage.

You will discover literally 1000s of different options when it comes to a women and health journal, but a few in particular that are going to be worth you checking out, and which will be discussed in detail here.

Women Health Journal

As the name implies, this can be a women health journal that basically provides you with everything. The company publishes a number of different publications, one being the most widely-read biotechnology trade publication worldwide. They were also the primary to publish a medical journal on AIDS, long before the sickness was designated as being a serious threat to world health.

These publications not just contribute significantly towards the literature but in addition they play an active and incredibly important role in the advancement of their respective fields.

If you need to know anything about women and health care this can be a great resource, then one that you should definitely take some time to check out.

Another Options: Journal Watch

Another great option for a women and health journal is Journal Watch. As among the finest known and most reputable health journals in the world, you can feel safe and assured knowing that you are getting your health information from here.

They feature information not only on women general care, but as well general medicine, hospital medicine, pediatrics and adolescent medicine, cardiology, dermatology, emergency medicine, gastroenterology, HIV/AIDS, infectious diseases, neurology, oncology and hematology, and psychiatry, only to name a few.

Weight Loss for Women

Most women regardless of their actual weight or size want to lose weight at some point in their lives. Some of us have pursued that goal for years, and years, with little or no success at all. We might have lost some weight with a diet, exercise program or supplement, and then put it all back on and then some more. And from then on we embark on this rollercoaster; trying different diets, foods, exercise programs, and even some diet pills!; some work and some don’t, but nevertheless, we end up dedicating considerable time, effort, and even money in this pursuit. Eventually we come to the point where, the more we try the more difficult it gets. Sometimes, even when we have let go of our obsessions with body and weight and we are more focused on our health, we still struggle to trim off excess fat in our body.

In this article I want to explore some of the possible causes/reasons why weight/fat loss seems to be quite challenging for a lot of women. I also suggest some simple specific actions that have effectively helped me in losing excess fat without restrictions, radical diets or intense exercise routines.

This article is not intended to provide medical advice, please always consult with a qualified professional for any concerns with your health and nutritional program. The information and suggestions in this article are based on my formal studies in Nutritional Science, several literature reviews on the topic, experiences shared with other women, and my personal journey with overcoming an Eating disorder, obsessive dieting and exercising, as well as digestive and hormonal issues.

• The reason WHY

Sometimes our main obstacle for weight loss is the perception that we have of ourselves in the world, our beliefs about beauty, the influence of the media, and ultimately the reasons why we want to lose weight can determine our success or our failure in achieving a healthy weight. Some common hidden reasons for women to want to lose weight are: being more attractive, fitting in, filling emotional gaps, gaining acceptance, confidence, etc. Let me explain, I had low self-esteem for several years and my perception was that if only I was skinny I would then be more confident and socially accepted. However, even when I had lost considerable amount of weight I still felt not good enough, I still didn’t find my place in the world, and I still had low self- esteem. I did gain some self-confidence but it wasn’t real and long lasting, because it was dependent on my perception of being “skinny”, it was sort of borrowed confidence because when I put the weight on again, that confidence went out the door, leaving me right where I started.

On the other hand, when I made health my priority, and committed to healing first and foremost, I obtained much better results; I was naturally more loyal to my goal. I embarked on a journey of discovery of my own body, emotions, driving forces, etc. I found what I was really in search of, and realized that losing weight was not going to give me what I needed. I knew that some other areas had to be fixed first, and that then, weight loss would come. It is OK to want to lose weight when the reasons are genuine like; to have better health, live longer, have more quality of life, etc., understanding that when we are healthy, weight loss happens more easily. “What heals your body slims your body”.

When we get clear on the reasons why, weight-loss becomes a more nourishing, and fulfilling experience. When you know your reason why, you will have a better starting point for the next steps.

• Good digestion = Good detoxification = Better chances for fat loss

One way to assess how good your health is, is by looking at how good your digestion is.

Good digestive function is a crucial aspect in making sure that our body is processing nutrients, absorbing what it needs, and excreting normally and efficiently everything that does not serve us well. If you have any sort of digestive issue, however small it is, it is important to work on restoring normal digestive function first. This should be a priority, and before worrying about counting calories, fats and carbohydrates, a diet must be developed around restoring normal digestive function. Sometimes even our exercise routine has to be adjusted to accommodate energy levels from food intake when our digestion is compromised, because the body might not be getting all the nutrition needed to support the metabolism of exercise.

Stress also affects our digestion in many ways, so it has to be considered when we try to fix our digestion, sometimes it is not the food we eat, but how, and when we eat.

If you are one of those lucky ones with an iron stomach and immaculate digestion, you have one less thing to worry about, and can start looking at the next steps.

• Restrictive eating and Stress

Stress —–> increased cortisol + increased insulin +hormonal imbalance = more fat storage

Restrictive, low calorie diets and exercise in excess are stressors for the body. We have stress coming at us in every which way nowadays, and on top of that we add more stress to our bodies with restrictive eating and exercising too much. Simply put, when we are stressed out, the last thing the body wants to do is to burn fat, because the body, especially in women needs to feel safe, and if it detects any signs of starvation or danger, it will go into fat saving mode, and if the restriction is severe it can even lower, and shut down some functions in the body. Science has demonstrated that the human body is very efficient at storing fat, this is how the body was design, and it is important to understand that, so that instead of fighting the nature of the body, we embrace it and work with it, and around it.

Stress is a biggie, and you have probably heard this everywhere, so in this article I just want to mention a few things to watch for, that add significant amount of stress, and impede weight loss.

Stress sabotages our weight loss efforts through a variety of mechanisms in the body, and that it just the way the body was designed to work.

Some common behaviors in women that signal starvation, and consequently stress are: constant dieting, counting calories, fasting, under-eating, going to bed hungry, over-training, losing too much weight fast, etc. Men usually can afford a lot more abuse to their bodies, but women can’t because we were designed to bear and carry children. Whether you get pregnant or not, every month the female body prepares to bear a child, and we put ourselves at serious risk when starving ourselves. Our fertility, mental health, libido, skin, bone health, hormones, thyroid, and sleep all suffer consequences. In addition we may also lose the ability to burn fat.

The longer we starve ourselves with diets and over training the more potential for damage to our body, and the less chances for sustainable fat loss.

Stress also causes a decrease in sex hormone production which will impair muscle growth, cause excess fat to deposit in certain areas, mood disorders, irregular and painful menstrual periods, etc.

If the body is deprived of certain nutrients it has to choose between switching off certain processes temporarily or leeching what’s needed from somewhere else in the body. This would mean possible catabolism/ breakdown when you are already in a catabolic state from dieting and training. This puts a lot of stress on the body by asking it to provide further breakdown in another area to sustain itself, which is just more stress added to the system. This can manifest in muscle loss, fatigue, weakness, hair loss, thinning hair, lowered thyroid function, etc.

Other sources of stress:

• Illness, pain, aches

Health issues require more energy and specific nutrients to allow for healing. When we have a specific condition, especially chronic conditions such as colitis, the body spends a lot of energy, and resources trying to heal. Pain, and illness are stressors for the body, they increase cortisol which signals the body to store fat, especially when we push the body beyond its current capacity to cope. We must focus on providing the body with appropriate care before focusing on losing weight, otherwise we will promote further breakdown, and overcompensation in the body.

• Doing too much, Over-training, Lack of sleep/rest

I am not sure when it became more socially acceptable for women to be as busy as possible, accomplish as much or more than men in business, politics, sports etc., joggle a full time job, plus take care of kids and sustain a household, train like an athlete, look like a fitness model, and lift heavy weights to demonstrate strength. Don’t get me wrong, I am the first one to believe in the strength and intelligence of women. It is for a reason that we are the ones who can bear a child! But my question is, can our female biology and physiology support all of those demands that I mentioned above?

I think the answer relies on the health status of the majority of women with highly demanding jobs, performance athletes, and the women who work full time jobs, or more than one job, who study and work, plus run kids around, sleep little hours, and much more that most women do on a daily basis these days.

What I hear recently from the online women health community is that a lot of women are suffering detrimental effects of demanding lifestyles, excessive exercise, dieting, and stress caused by doing more than the body can handle, and not having enough rest!. This effects show in the increased incidence of amenorrhea (loss of your menstrual cycle), infertility, metabolic damage, hormonal imbalances, low energy, PMS, Painful periods, low thyroid function, digestive problems, stubborn weight gain, and more.

That said, I am sure that some women (even though the minority) might be more resilient to stress than others, and that there is a different level of activity that is supportive of good health for each of us. The point is to be honest with ourselves and find our threshold. How much can you honestly handle while maintaining optimal health? because yes! We are meant to feel good, and function well. We can’t and should not drag ourselves around on caffeine stimulation.

Most women need to sleep at least 7-8 hours every day to repair and detoxify. Some of us need more than that, I am one of them. Don’t give up your sleep! Sleep should be a priority over exercise, and sometimes more than eating.

When it comes to over-training, it means different things for each of us, depending on our level of health, and even our genetics. I will share with you that the stage where I am at in my healing journey; more than 30 minutes of light exercise a day is over-training!, and I do my body more harm than good if I push harder than that. One session of High intensity interval training can leave me exhausted for a whole week, and I can notice my stress level, and anxiety rising with that type of exercise. It took me a while to understand this, and it was hard to give up the gym, but I took a leap of faith, and in the end I felt better by cutting down.

National Women’s Health

Did you know there are centers and networks for National Women’s Health in Europe, in the US, in Australia and in some countries in Asia? In lots of countries, it is an important issue as women frequently take care of so many things, but forget to take care of themselves.

Services

It can be said that it is a dedication the nation has to provide women personalized care. Those that centers play a significant part in this respect are hospitals and other organizations such as nursing homes as well as health centers. They have doctors as well as nurses on their payroll and a number of community services.

The National Women’s Health Center is one such organization which has several services particularly for women. Included are maternity care, maternity outpatient services and even newborn services. Other services that are also provided here are fertility, gynecology and oncology too.

Reform Plans

Establishing universal access to health care which meets various women’s needs is very important. There are some reform plans being made in the US, and the National Women’s Health Network is contributing to it in a big way. It is effective in the direction of getting quality and affordable health care for every women.

There are also doctors and lawyers who are promoting women to raise their voices for the health care that they require, so that the case becomes powerful. Finally, women’s concerns can be addressed because it is looking at reforms on the local and state level as well.

Social Empowerment of Women

The indicators of social empowerment of women include the base of gender inequality, sex ratios, life expectancy rates and fertility rates which shows the general status of women in terms of literacy, economic growth, availability of health care and birth control facilities, educational status of women, age at marriage, literacy rates and participation of women outside the home. Gender inequality is a worldwide phenomenon and leaving aside some Nordic nations, gender inequality base reflects very poorly for almost all major countries in the world. Sex ratio is against women in Asia and even though life expectancy has gone up around the world including in Asia it has not improved the overall status of women in much of the world. Same is the case with fertility rates which have declined in some regions including Asia but the positive impact of this change on women around the world is not as much as that was desired. Glaring gender gap exists in terms of literacy rates though it is narrowing across Asia. The figures for female literacy rates are not at all encouraging in the developing world. Now let’s focus on various issues that are closely associated with the social empowerment of women.

Social empowerment of women: Ending violence against women

Violence against women is a real fact and we need to acknowledge the real tragedy behind this crime. It totally shatters the women from the core psychologically as well as physically. It is time that community development and feminist values are made an integral aspect of empowerment of women. Women need to be educated and made aware of their rights and they should be encouraged to stand united against the biased and discriminating social environment which directly and indirectly affects their psychological and physical self. Education and awareness would be a big step towards the fight against gender based violence. Only through education and awareness we can connect with the vast majority of women living in various parts of the world and prevent them from falling pray to the numerous forms of possible violence in their life. We have to accept the fact that women are constantly under the threat of violence from various sides. The oppressive structures of the society need to be changed and oppression of women need to be stopped but it won’t happen through some quick fix solutions. The change can be only possible through social empowerment of women at the grass root level with education and awareness.

Social empowerment of women: Issues related to social empowerment of women

When we talk of social empowerment of women then we are actually addressing various issues which might be applicable to different parts of the world for improving the overall status of women. Among them the prominent issues relate to education for women, health for women, nutrition for women, drinking water and sanitation for women and their family, housing and shelter for women and their family, environment and the connection with women, participation of women in the field of science and technology, care for women under difficult circumstances, fighting the violence against women and rights of the girl child.

Social empowerment of women: Education for women

We need to accept the fact that gender inequality and discrimination has been the norm of the society and in this regard it touches all aspects of the life of women. Education and training for women is one of the major goals of social empowerment of women which need to be universally made applicable to all parts of the world. This will definitely enhance the awareness in women which in turn will increase her confidence. A confident and well aware woman would be able to tackle inequality and discrimination in a far better way than an ill-equipped and ill-trained woman. But on the other hand we have to accept the fact that women and girls never had equal access to education as men and boys have. Illiteracy is the highest among the female of the population. Women are far behind in terms of having gainful occupation or vocation because of lack of skills and education. There is an enormous gender gap in secondary and higher education. Moreover religious and caste equations have made things worse in many parts of the world. The work has to start at the grass root levels. The educational systems need to be made more accessible to women at grass root levels and they need to be revamped to include gender sensitive educational system which prevents sex stereotyping and discrimination. Social organizations can play a major role in universalizing education at the basic ground level. This can be achieved through increasing the enrollment and retention rates of girl child in the primary schools and offering quality education and skills to them so that they can stand up on their feet and live a dignified life.

Social empowerment of women: Healthcare for women

Coming to the health of women we need to understand that women are facing very difficult times at all stages of their life cycle. It is sad to note that a section of our society is highly prejudiced against the girl child and in fact can be labelled as criminals of the highest order as they practice the heinous crime of female feticide. Then we have the problem of high infant mortality and maternal mortality and one of the major reasons for this being the early child marriages. Quality health care for women is not available in many parts of the world. Women’s right to informed choice regarding her reproductive rights is another area which needs attention. Talking of reproductive rights women even don’t have affordable choice of family planning methods. Education and awareness in this regard is nonexistent and absent. Women are vulnerable to sexually transmitted diseases and other endemic, infectious and communicable diseases. HIV/AIDS is another major problem. Women’s traditional knowledge of health care and nutrition, alternative systems of medicine are actually underutilised and not recognized. It is necessary to recognize these alternative systems and integrate them with the main stream health care systems to make it work in tandem. This shall help in providing reasonable and quality health care for women.

Social empowerment of women: Nutrition, drinking water, sanitation and housing

For women, from the stage of infancy and childhood to the stage of adolescent and reproductive phase the risk of malnutrition is the highest. There is a close link between the health of an adolescent girl who becomes a pregnant and lactating woman latter and the health of the infant child. Macro and micro nutrients are needed for these special conditions but they are not available to the vast majority of women. In house the women and girl child face great discrimination as regards to good nutritious food. This happens in the early growth period of a child as well as to a pregnant and lactating woman. Other major issues are drinking water and sanitation especially in rural areas and urban slums. Housing and shelter are also area of attention including adequate and safe accommodation for single women, heads of the households, working women, students, apprentices and trainees. These are very real issues of the very real world that we live in. Without addressing these basic needs we cannot think about any meaningful step towards social empowerment of women.

Social empowerment of women: Women and environment conservation

Social empowerment of women and environment is closely linked. Women can play a major role in conservation and restoration of the environment. Rural women use unconventional and nature friendly source of energy in the form of animal dung, crop waste and fuel wood. Using of solar energy, biogas, and smokeless stoves can really help the rural women as they can act as environmental friendly tools.

Social empowerment of women: Participation of women in development of science and technology

Women’s empowerment cannot be complete without their equitable participation in science and technology. Women have special role to play in the area of science and technology. They can bring a wave of creative and generative energy in the field of science and technology. Today their participation is restricted and limited to very less numbers because of widespread discrimination at the basic education levels and lack of opportunities for pursuing higher studies. Reducing drudgery with the help of science and technology is another major area of importance for freeing women from the never ending domestic chores and making her contribute to the mainstream of the society.

Social empowerment of women: Helping women in difficult times

Women in difficult circumstances need special attention. These include women in extreme poverty, destitute women, women in conflict situations, women affected by natural calamities, women in less developed regions, disabled widows, elderly women, single women in difficult circumstances, women heading households, women who are displaced from employment, migrant women who are victims of marital violence, deserted women and prostitutes. These women are in difficult circumstances which are not of their own making. They are the victims of the selfish streak of society. It is ironical to note that women become the primary pray for all the malice and sins of the society. It is time to reverse this phenomenon. Organizations especially the grass root level social organizations should come in large numbers to help these women who are at the receiving end for a sin which is not of their making.

Social empowerment of women: Fighting against violence and discrimination

Violence against women is heinous crime against humanity. Violence can be both physical and psychological and it happens at the domestic front as well as at other levels of the society. It is in fact openly practiced in many societies through various forms which include customs and traditions. Sexual harassment at work, dowry related violence and trafficking of women and girls are different types of violence against women. Discrimination against women starts when they are just children. Girl child discrimination is the most prevalent form of harassment seen from the early age of a child. Parental sex selection, female feticide, female infanticide, child marriage, child abuse including sexual and psychological abuse and child prostitution are the many kinds of violence and discrimination against the girl child that is seen within the home as well as the society. Special awareness and education programmes needs to be formulated and implemented at every level to fight the violence against women. Strict laws need to be formulated to fight the crime of violence against women. More than formulating the laws the priority should be to implement and enforce these laws so that we can root out violence against women. This is necessary for any meaningful social empowerment of women.

For free information and advice on topics and issues related to women, visit [http://www.rise-of-womanhood.org]

This site envisions the rise of womanhood in true sense that is the rise of the “essence” of womanhood in the physical, mental, intellectual and the spiritual planes. It calls for the beginning of a campaign for the true rise of women in all spheres of life for the restoration of the balance in nature.