Monday, December 20, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm: DASH Your Way To Better Health

Marla Ahlgrimm

Diets are hard, which is a fact of life known to just about all women. But, according to Marla Ahlgrimm, diets are not the way to lose weight or take control of your health. Instead, she recommends eating according to a heart-healthy plan, which is much easier to handle than a restrictive diet. 
One eating plan to follow is known as the DASH diet. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, it is extremely flexible and simply requires followers to meet daily and weekly goals for their nutrition. Loose rules of the dash eating plan include: 

Thursday, December 9, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm Shares Thoughts On Sadness In The Winter Months

How does sunshine affect your mood? According to retired healthcare professional Marla Ahlgrimm, the sun, or lack thereof, can have a significant impact on your overall mood throughout the long winter. 
If you have ever noticed that you feel fatigued, cranky, and generally down from November through late February, you may be suffering from a mild form of seasonal affective disorder (SAD). According to Marla Ahlgrimm, SAD is a type of depression that is triggered by the time change of the winter months. As the sun begins to set - sometimes as early as 4 PM - we have less daylight. Less daylight means less energy. Why? 
Marla Ahlgrimm explains that the summer sun means more exposure to sunlight. This leads your brain to producing more serotonin. This hormone, which is closely intertwined with our moods, dips when it is darker for longer. This can leave us feeling like a shell of ourselves and longing for spring. 
Symptoms of SAD include pulling away from friends and family, uncontrolled fatigue, increased hunger, and extreme anxiety. Marla Ahlgrimm says that only about 2% of the population experiences true seasonal affective disorder, but the vast majority of us are affected in some way by longer nights and shorter days. 

Sunday, November 28, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm On Common STDs

Marla Ahlgrimm
Although nearly half of the 20 million STD cases diagnosed each year are among people ages 15 to 24, Marla Ahlgrimm says it’s never too late to learn about sexually transmitted viruses. All women who are sexually active should have at least a fundamental understanding of issues they might encounter. Here are a few of the most common STDs. 
By far the most common virus transmitted between people. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, HPV is the virus that causes genital warts. However, it does not always show signs, and the vast majority of people spread it without ever knowing they have it. 

You’ve probably heard of herpes, but do you know what it does? Marla Ahlgrimm explains that herpes is responsible for common cold sores and fever blisters. The sexually-transmitted variant can also cause genital blistering. Alarmingly, herpes can have a significant negative impact on a developing fetus, particularly if a woman becomes infected within the first 12 weeks of pregnancy. 

Tuesday, November 9, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm On Skin Cancer Types

When it comes to skin cancer, there are two common types. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, these are squamous cell and basal cells. Here, the women’s health entrepreneur offers up a bit of information on the two. 
Q: What is cancer? 
Marla Ahlgrimm: Cancer is essentially cells in the body growing abnormally. It can happen anywhere. Skin cancer almost always starts on the top layer of the skin, which is called the epidermis. Skin cancer is often caused by exposure to sun or tanning beds, but, sometimes, it is the result of having a weak immune system or having come into contact with toxic chemicals.  
Q: What are squamous cells? 
Marla Ahlgrimm: Squamous cells are a type of cell that grows on the outermost layer of the skin. They are perfectly normal, and they are continually regrown and shed. However, occasionally, the cells grow outside of the spectrum of normal. This is when they become skin cancer or, medically, squamous cell carcinoma. 

Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm: What Causes Bleeding After Sex?

Marla Ahlgrimm
Sex is supposed to be an enjoyable experience. However, there are times when the joy can turn to fear, particularly for women who experience bleeding after intercourse. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, postcoital bleeding is not uncommon, but it might be cause for concern. 
Q: What causes bleeding after sex? 
Marla Ahlgrimm: There are many potential causes of postcoital bleeding. One of the most common is pelvic inflammatory disease. Vaginal dryness, cervical polyps, and, in extreme cases, cervical cancer are also known issues that can trigger bleeding after intercourse. However, often, bleeding after sex may be the result of the cervix shedding its lining, which can happen several days before and after a woman’s period. 
Q: How do I know what’s causing my postcoital bleeding? 
Marla Ahlgrimm: It happens outside of your period, it’s probably best to see your doctor. They will likely administer a pregnancy test and a pelvic examination. This involves inserting two fingers into your vagina to manually feel for abnormalities. Your physician will also insert a speculum into your vagina to look for issues not felt. This exam will feel much like a routine Pap smear/visit to your gynecologist. 

Monday, October 11, 2021

Why Do My Hormones Matter? Marla Ahlgrimm Explains

Marla Ahlgrimm

By now, you already know that your hormones are tiny chemical messengers that pretty much tell everything in your body what to do. But, how do they work, can you have too many hormones, and can we influence our hormone production or is it entirely controlled by the body? Marla Ahlgrimm answers these and other questions below. 
According to Marla Ahlgrimm, your body creates hormones and, when you eat, exercise, and get enough sleep, your body usually maintains the exact balance you need to perform virtually every function. But, there are many things that you can do to influence your hormone production. Not sleeping enough, using too many pesticides and herbicides, ingesting man-made chemicals, and living a stagnant lifestyle all affect your body’s hormone production. 

Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Gender And Metabolism | Marla Ahlgrimm

Marla Ahlgrimm
We’ve all heard the joke about the woman who quits drinking sodas and gains three pounds while her similarly-abstaining husband loses 20. As ridiculous as it sounds, there is a slight grain of truth, although Marla Ahlgrimm says that it doesn’t really have that much to do with gender, but more size and body mass. 
According to Marla Ahlgrimm, women do have slightly slower metabolisms than their husbands and brothers. However, this biological function isn’t necessarily different because of gender, but more because women tend to have more fat on their bodies than men. But, higher muscle mass is the result of sex hormones, specifically testosterone. Women have higher estrogen levels and, proportionately, more body fat. Muscle burns fat faster; therefore, men are typically more efficient at the process. 
Another difference between men and women relating to fat is where it’s stored. Women tend to be lucky in that fat is distributed more evenly across the body. Women also have more subcutaneous fat, which is easier to lose and poses fewer health risks than visceral fat, which is more common in men. Visceral fat stored in the abdominal cavity. If you’ve ever seen a man with a “beer belly,” then you have seen visceral fat at work. 

Thursday, September 9, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm: Vaccine Approval Vs. Authorization

Marla Ahlgrimm

By now, all know that the FDA has approved at least one vaccine for COVID-19. But, two others remain in Emergency Use Authorization stage. Marla Ahlgrimm answers questions about the difference below. 
Q: What is the difference between approval and authorization? 
Marla Ahlgrimm: In virtually all other situations, approval and authorization mean the same thing. When it comes to the FDA, however, Approval is a term that denotes that long-term studies have taken place on the medication or device in question and that it has been deemed safe for widespread use. Authorization means that the FDA believes that using an unapproved product, in this case, a vaccine, is safer than not using it. 

Monday, August 30, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm On Key Health Facts Important To Women

Marla Ahlgrimm

Men and women are very different when it comes to health, says Marla Ahlgrimm. Here, the retired pharmacist offers up a few key facts that women should keep in mind throughout their lifetime. 
Women live longer than men. 
There’s a good chance that you will outlive your same-age partner. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, nine out of 10 people in nursing homes are women. This is because women tend to live longer than their male counterparts. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, this also means that elderly women are also more at risk of social isolation. 

Monday, August 16, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm: Do You Know The Signs Of Cancer In Women?

Marla Ahlgrimm
Cancer is an awful disease that happens when the cells within the body grow abnormally, mutating into something that causes harm. Although both sexes are prone to many of the same cancers, there are some that are exclusive to women. But, as a woman, do you know signs of cancer specific to you? 
Skin cancer 
Both men and women can develop skin cancer, says Marla Ahlgrimm. However, due to the use of indoor tanning beds, it’s more common in women. Skin cancer may appear as a new mole or unexpected growth anywhere on the body. Skin may darken, or a woman may notice an existing mole change shape or color. 
Breast cancer 
As the second most common female-related cancer, women over the age of 40 should always be on the lookout for signs of breast cancer. Marla Ahlgrimm explains that these include a mass inside the breast, unusual swelling or heaviness, or a spontaneously-forming lesion. Some women with breast cancer also notice inverted nipples or unusual nipple discharge years after lactation. 

Thursday, July 22, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm: Girls And Physical Maturity

Marla Ahlgrimm

Physical maturity is that age at which a girl reaches sexual maturity and has stopped growing. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, this takes place sometime after puberty, typically between 15 and 20 years old. Keep reading for a few quick questions and answers about the transition from girlhood to womanhood. 
Q: When do little girls stop growing? 
Marla Ahlgrimm: That’s different for every girl, but typically, a female will reach her adult height by the age of 15. Full physical maturity, however, may not take place until several years after menstruation begins. Once a girl reaches her height, her body will still begin to “fill out” with fat pockets around the thighs and breasts. 

Monday, July 12, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm: What Causes Menstrual Cramps?

Marla Ahlgrimm

As women, we are all intimately familiar with the side-effects of menstruation. One of these is menstrual cramps, the painful contractions that can leave us lingering in bed for a day or two at the onset of our period. But, what causes them? According to Marla Ahlgrimm, it’s hormones. 
Marla Ahlgrimm explains that the overproduction of prostaglandins, a hormone that tells the uterus it’s time to shed its lining, is most likely the culprit if you are experiencing menstrual cramps. Fortunately, these are short-lived, and often occur just a day or two before bleeding begins. 

Monday, June 28, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm | Swimming, Your Period, And You

Marla Ahlgrimm
Summer is here, and many young women are gearing up for some fun in the sun. But, Marla Ahlgrimm says that a common concern is swimming during the menstrual cycle. Is it possible? Keep reading for the answer. 
According to Marla Ahlgrimm, yes, you can swim when you are on your period. To answer the next most obvious question, no, it won’t attract sharks. 
Women who wish to swim on their periods should avoid pads and use tampons or a menstrual cup instead. This is because both of these feminine hygiene products stop blood before it exits the body. By contrast, a pad is excellent at absorbing blood, but it has to leave the vagina first. 

What is a menstrual cup? 
Marla Ahlgrimm explains that a menstrual cup is similar to a small silicone bowl inserted into a woman’s body. Unlike a tampon, which absorbs blood, a cup creates a seal inside of the cervix to catch and collect the monthly flow. Cups can be worn for up to 12 hours, making them a great option for those who plan to swim all day. 

Sunday, June 13, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm | STD Signs You Should NEVER Ignore

Marla Ahlgrimm

Sexually-transmitted diseases are common among sexually active men and women. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, knowing the signs of a sexually transmitted disease or sexually transmitted infection is crucial to your overall health. Here are a few symptoms you should never ignore. 
For both genders 
Marla Ahlgrimm explains that both men and women should watch first and foremost for pain when urinating. Any unusual tingling, itching, burning, or soreness around the genitals is also cause for alarm. Spots, sores, and blisters around the vagina, penis, or anus should also be brought up to your primary health care provider. Something else to watch for is a black or white powdery substance in underwear, which might indicate the presence of pubic lice. 

Friday, May 28, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm: Why Are Strokes Becoming More Common In Younger Women?

Marla Ahlgrimm

The vast majority of strokes occur in senior citizens, says Marla Ahlgrimm. But, today, more and more women than between the ages of 25 and 44 are being diagnosed with stroke. Why? 
Marla Ahlgrimm explains that there are many reasons that young women may experience a potentially life-altering stroke. One is lupus. Lupus is a disease that triggers inflammation throughout the entire body. This leaves people with lupus more than twice as likely to experience what’s known as an ischemic stroke. 
Women who experience migraine with aura are also at a slightly increased risk of having a stroke. While the additional risk is small, migraines are often accompanied by other conditions that can elevate a woman’s potential for having a stroke. Marla Ahlgrimm notes that women are more likely to have migraines during their reproductive years – approximately 13 through 45 – then same-age men. 

Monday, May 10, 2021

Women’s Health Brief With Marla Ahlgrimm: Yeast Infections

Marla Ahlgrimm

Yeast infections are no fun, a fact known by around 75% of women in the world. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, while yeast infection is not an STD, this bothersome condition can affect your sex life. 
Marla Ahlgrimm explains that a yeast infection is typified by vaginal discharge, rash, and soreness. Many women also experience irritation and itching. Sometimes, a burning sensation while urinating or during sexual intercourse is noticeable. 
Fortunately, there are very few complications associated with having a yeast infection. Marla Ahlgrimm notes, however, that you may need medical intervention if your yeast infection leads to swelling or sores. Further, women who are pregnant, have HIV, an immune disorder, or diabetes may also need immediate attention. 

Wednesday, April 28, 2021

What Are The Side-Effects Of The COVID-19 Vaccine? | Marla Ahlgrimm

Marla Ahlgrimm
The COVID-19 pandemic necessitated something we’ve never had before: an emergency vaccine for a virus we don’t fully understand. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, there are several vaccines now released and approved for public use. But, are they safe? 
Marla Ahlgrimm points out that, despite the rapid release of the vaccines, there is a great deal of science behind them. She notes that pharmaceutical companies and scientists had already put years of work into the method, which is mRNA sequencing, that the vaccines utilize. In the instance of COVID-19, the vaccine drafts a set of instructions that mimics the protein spikes found on the virus. This, in turn, teaches the body to make antibodies, which then fight future infections. 

Wednesday, April 7, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm on COVID And Testerone

Marla Ahlgrimm

Since the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, it’s become clear that men tend to suffer longer and more severe symptoms than women. Hormones specialist Marla Ahlgrimm explains that this might be due to the way that the coronavirus affects testosterone levels. 
According to Marla Ahlgrimm, a September 2020 study published in The Aging Male found that men with hospital-worthy cases of COVID-19 had significantly lower levels of testosterone than their asymptomatic counterparts. While scientists have always believed that testosterone levels in men may contribute to severity, this particular study uncovered a possible link between the coronavirus and the depletion of testosterone in otherwise healthy men. 

Monday, March 29, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm On The Benefits of Swimming

Marla Ahlgrimm

Spring is near, and many of us are looking forward to spending the warmer months in the water. According to Marla Ahlgrimm, swimming offers many benefits for the mind and body. Keep reading for more perks of swimsuit season. 
Q: Why is swimming such a good exercise? 
Marla Ahlgrimm: Swimming is one of the only exercises that works your entire body. To stay afloat, you use virtually every muscle, and you also build endurance. Further, swimming is an excellent cardiovascular workout that keeps your lungs and heart pumping and thumping the way they were meant to. 

Monday, March 15, 2021

Online Dating Safety | Marla Ahlgrimm

Marla Ahlgrimm

Just a few years ago, online dating was still in its infancy. Now, Marla Ahlgrimm says that the vast majority of new relationships begin with a liked photo or a swipe right. But just because it is common does not mean that women can let their guard down. Here are a few online dating safety tips to keep in mind as you search for your soulmate. 
Remember, Google is your best friend. 
Do your research on the men that you choose to meet. A quick Google or social media search should reveal an active social life. If you find their Facebook, for example, look to see that they are tagged. If they claim to be professional, Marla Ahlgrimm says it’s very easy to check their LinkedIn. 

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm: Leg Cramps

Marla Ahlgrimm

If you’ve never been jolted out of bed with painful muscle contractions in your legs, consider yourself lucky. This is an unfortunately common issue, particularly for women. 
Q: What are leg cramps? 
Marla Ahlgrimm: Leg cramps are an involuntary, sudden, and extremely intense, often painful contraction of the muscles in your upper or lower leg. Sometimes, foot cramps can also trigger cramps in the lower leg. You may hear someone refer to leg cramps as a Charlie horse. Regardless of what you call it, it is uncomfortable at best. 

Sunday, February 14, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm: Breast Cancer In Men

Marla Ahlgrimm
Breast cancer is typically considered a woman’s disease. But, according to Marla Ahlgrimm, approximately 1% of every diagnosed case in the US is in a man. This is shocking news to many people, but it is important to know, since breast cancer can be fatal to both sexes. 
Marla Ahlgrimm explains that the signs of male breast cancer are similar to that with females. A lump or swelling, flakiness and irritation, and even nipple discharge may indicate breast cancer. Some men also experience painful nipples, dimpling of the skin on the pectorals, and an inverted nipple. 

Risk Factors 
Like women, men with breast cancer are more likely to have a mutation of specific genes, including BRCA1 and BRCA2. Age also plays a factor, and Marla Ahlgrimm notes that the vast majority of men diagnosed with breast cancer are 50 years of age or older. Family history is another important indicator of a man’s risk, and having a first generation relative with the disease puts even healthy men at a greater risk. Rarely, Klinefelter syndrome is to blame. This is an extremely rare genetic condition where the body produces too much estrogen and not enough androgens because of an additional X chromosome. 

Tuesday, January 26, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm On The Benefits And Risks Of Hormone Therapy

Marla Ahlgrimm
A little more than a decade ago, many women were scared by reports from the Women’s Health Initiative that hormone therapy might not be safe. The truth is that most healthy women with menopause can safely find relief of its symptoms with hormone therapy. Here, Marla Ahlgrimm explains the benefits and assesses the risks of using hormones to circumvent the worst of menopause. 
According to Marla Ahlgrimm, hormone therapy is one of the best ways to reduce hot flashes, insomnia, brain fog, and night sweats. The right dose can also lessen the effects of vaginal dryness, which include feeling less pleasure during intercourse and itchiness. Many women also find relief of an overactive bladder by utilizing vaginal estrogen, something that has also been found to reduce recurrent urinary tract infections. 
Marla Ahlgrimm further asserts that, under your doctor’s guidance, hormone therapy during menopause may also offer some protection against osteoporosis. For women who begin hormone therapy within a decade of menopause, a lowered risk of heart disease is another potential part. Those with a family history of or a lifestyle that might trigger diabetes may also receive protective benefits with hormone therapy. 

Wednesday, January 6, 2021

Marla Ahlgrimm | Dry Eye Syndrome

Marla Ahlgrimm

Marla Ahlgrimm, a retired pharmacist that specialized in hormone replacement therapy, says that women seek HRT to combat the many unwelcome symptoms of menopause. One of these is dry eye syndrome. 
According to Marla Ahlgrimm, dry eye syndrome is a condition that reduces the moisture level on the surface of the eyes. Unfortunately, it is more than simply an annoyance. Dry eye syndrome can result in a burning sensation and the feeling as though there is something perpetually stuck in the eye. Further, because the eye does not have the lubrication it needs for effective blinking, this may result in constant damage to the eyes’ surface.