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Journal of General Practice Nursing (GPN) | March 2021

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Can diet and lifestyle changes help women’s health conditions?

Can diet and lifestyle changes help women’s health conditions?
Health promotion

Pages: 53 - 60

Article topics: Glycaemic index, Inflammation, Menopause, PCOS, PMS

In a busy general practice setting, some women’s health issues are perceived by the patients to have been dismissed with a prescription for Prozac, or just played down and the woman told that there is nothing wrong. Wanting women’s health issues to be addressed fully and respectfully is why the Royal College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology developed its publication and campaign, ‘Better for Women’, with the aim of steering the UK away from providing a disease intervention service towards a preventative health service, which addresses the determinants of health throughout the woman’s life course. Without doubt, some women’s health issues can be helped with medication; but this should not be the first approach. Further, medication is more likely to work well if women’s health and lifestyle issues are also addressed. Top diet and lifestyle issues include excess weight, lack of physical activity, and stress; and many of these are intertwined. Addressing these issues when dealing with the three top women’s health conditions: menopause, polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) and premenstrual syndrome (PMS), is essential — to move straight into the medication option and ignoring lifestyle changes often means the problem may never truly be solved long term.

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