A holistic approach to women’s health recognizes how physical, emotional, and spiritual well-being are interconnected. It’s more than just treating symptoms – a holistic approach to women’s health seeks to address the root causes and create a comprehensive plan for health and wellness. Here’s how holistic strategies, particularly holistic nutrition, can be helpful in the pursuit of well-being in the most common women’s health issues.
What are the Most Common Women’s Health Issues?
The most common women’s health issues include reproductive organs and hormone balance; however, perhaps the largest concern surrounds the cardiovascular and mental health of women – areas of wellness that may not be getting sufficient attention.
One of the most well-recognized aspects of women’s health is reproductive well-being and fertility. Key health conditions include endometriosis, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), and infertility. Endometriosis is a painful condition where tissue similar to the uterine lining grows outside the uterus, which can cause chronic discomfort and fertility problems. PCOS affects up to 10% of women of childbearing age and is associated with hormonal imbalances and metabolic issues.
However, women’s health is much more than reproduction, and a disproportionate amount of research focuses on this area, while there are many more areas of women’s health worthy of attention.
Hormones impact everything from mood to metabolism, made more complicated in women with a variety of hormones cycling in constant flux. A range of symptoms can occur with hormonal imbalances. Menopause in particular leads to many issues including insomnia, anxiety, hot flashes, weight gain, and more. Thyroid imbalances can also lead to energy and weight management issues for women.
The leading cause of death in women around the world, cardiovascular diseases can present differently in women, a group less commonly targeted by medical professionals. High cholesterol, blood pressure, stress, and inflammation are risk factors of concern, as are lifestyles that lack sleep.
Mental health may be one of the most under-acknowledged aspects of women’s well-being, says research. Depression, anxiety, and headaches are disproportionately heavy burdens on women, while pain is commonly endured by women and overlooked by physicians, according to reports. Hormonal fluctuations and social pressures unique to women add to the burden on their mental health.
Osteoporosis, a condition when bones become less dense and at greater risk of fracture, greatly affects women’s health over 50. An estimated 1 in 3 women in Canada over 50 experience an osteoporotic fracture.
A unique concern for women is breast health. Luckily, there are holistic approaches to breast health that embrace breast health beyond mammograms.
What is a Holistic Approach to Women’s Health?
From a nutrient-dense diet to stress management, a holistic approach to women’s health allows the interconnections between body, mind, and spirit to optimize well-being. Here are the key aspects of a holistic approach to women’s health.
Focus on Nutrient-Dense, Whole Foods
Eating whole, nutrient-dense foods supports overall well-being. Fiber, vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, good fats, and protein are components needed for all aspects of women’s health.
Develop Stress Management Strategies
More evidence shows the impact chronic stress has on women’s health. Learning strategies to manage stress, such as meditation, yoga, breathwork, journaling, and gratefulness can help. Physical activity is also helpful in reducing stress and is a key part of a healthy holistic lifestyle.
Regular exercise is fundamental to health. Regular movement supports weight management, reduces stress, and supports cardiovascular health. Bone health can be supported with weight-bearing exercises.
Herbal and Nutritional Supplements
Natural remedies, such as herbal and nutritional supplements, can provide support for various health issues. Vitex, commonly known as Chaste Tree, is well supported by traditional use to support women’s hormonal balance, particularly with premenstrual symptoms (PMS). Vitamin D, calcium, and magnesium are well known for their supportive roles in bone health. Iron can also be a valuable supplement for women struggling with low levels.
Holistic health also looks at environmental factors, including reducing exposure to toxins in beauty and household products. Introducing more time in nature is also a way to naturally reduce stress and improve well-being.
The Individual Approach
What works for one person may not work for another – each woman has unique needs and challenges. A holistic approach takes this into account. Holistic Nutritionists help women develop personalized nutrition and lifestyle plans that can support their specific health goals and promote overall well-being.
Canadian School of Natural Nutrition: A Hub for Holistic Health Education
For those interested in delving deeper into the world of holistic health, the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition (CSNN) offers comprehensive and flexible educational programs.
CSNN is a renowned institution that provides evidence-based, holistic nutrition education to empower individuals to enhance their well-being and that of others.
CSNN offers a variety of formats to suit the diverse needs of learners:
CSNN offers in-person classroom-based programs for those who prefer a structured and interactive learning environment. These programs are conducted in various cities across Canada, making them accessible to a wide audience.
For those who require flexibility in their learning journey, CSNN offers distance education programs. These programs allow students to study from the comfort of their homes or anywhere they choose, making it an ideal option for those with busy schedules or geographical constraints.
Online Webinars and Workshops
CSNN also hosts online webinars and workshops on a range of holistic health topics, making it easy for individuals to explore specific aspects of holistic health and nutrition.
Continuous Support and Resources
CSNN provides ongoing support and resources to students and graduates, ensuring that they have access to the latest research, trends, and insights in the field of holistic health.