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Entries in women's health (6)


Exercise Makes Life Better (and Longer) for Women

When it comes to health, there are some ways in which women are different from men. For example, women respond differently to diet and exercise regimens, and are more likely to die from heart disease. In honor of Women’s Health Weeka week focused on encouraging and empowering women to make their health a prioritywe’ve compiled a list of ways physical activity can help women live longerand better.


Women often find themselves juggling a lot of moving pieces—work, children, household, etc., which can all be very stressful. Fortunately, physical activity is known to reduce stress and improve mood. Research shows that exercise can decrease stress and increase mental resources to deal with it, boost mood during pregnancy, and benefit students. Vigorous exercise can also decrease stress, and improve mental health and sleep in young adults.

Continue reading "Exercise Makes Life Better (and Longer) for Women."

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Aerobic Exercise in Varying Frequencies Benefits Health of Overweight Women

Research consistently demonstrates that exercise is beneficial for people with overweight and obesity. A study published in the Journal of Physical Activity and Health assessed the impact of varying frequency and duration of aerobic physical activity on overweight women. Thirty-four participants were randomized to either a long bout (twice weekly, 75 minute sessions) or short bout (30 minute sessions five times per week) group of similar intensity exercise for eight weeks.

 Results showed that weekly energy expenditure was similar for both groups. In addition, exercise training resulted in improved fitness, decreased waist circumference, decreased insulin resistance, and reduced diastolic blood pressure, with no major difference in benefit between the two groups. The authors concluded that exercise training programs with comparable energy expenditure are comparably beneficial independent of frequency and duration of the individual sessions.

Manthou E1, Gill JM, Malkova D. Effect of exercise programs with aerobic exercise sessions of similar intensity but different frequency and duration on health-related measures in overweight women. J Phys Act Health. 2015 Jan;12(1):80-6. doi: 10.1123/jpah.2013-0047. Epub 2014 May 15.

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Community Based Exercise Program Helps Women Maintain Bone Health and Muscle Mass  

As people age, they experience declines in bone health and loss of muscle mass. A study published in the Journal of Human Kinetics analyzed the effect of a community based exercise program on preventing some of these losses in 20 post-menopausal women with type 2 diabetes. The exercise program included walking, aquatic exercise, and resistance training three times per week for 32 weeks.

The results showed an improvement in muscle mass and bone mineral density among women who exercised compared to those who didn’t, suggesting that regular, varied exercise can help prevent sarcopenia (age related muscle loss) and osteoporosis in older women. Health clubs provide a supportive, safe place for women to pursue regular, a variety of different exercise activities.

Bello M1, Sousa MC2, Neto G2, Oliveira L3, Guerras I4, Mendes R5, Sousa N5. The effect of a long-term, community-based exercise program on bone mineral density in postmenopausal women with pre-diabetes and type 2 diabetes. J Hum Kinet. 2014 Nov 12;43:43-8. doi: 10.2478/hukin-2014-0088. eCollection 2014.

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Women still have a long way to go in health

With National Women's Health Week in the middle of May, IHRSA Executive Vice President of Public Policy Helen Durkin got to thinking about the strides, and disappointments when it comes to women and health and fitness over the past couple decades.

Smoking and breast cancer-related deaths are down. That, obviously, is the good news. Unfortunately, less than half of American women meet 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for aerobic activity, and women are 10% less likely than men to meet the guidelines.

Durkin writes in the Roll Call blog about how those numbers can change for the positive, most notably primary prevention - regular exercise; a healthy diet; the avoidance of tobacco, alcohol, and other controlled substances; and stress management.

Read her entire column on the Roll Call website.


Health E-Review: Benefits of Exercise Newsletter

A compilation of recent research on the benefits of exercise and nutrition.

In this week's issue:

  • Exercise Boosts Mood During Pregnancy
  • Personalized Exercise Plans Good For Obese Teens With Diabetes
  • Exercise is Good for An Older Brain
  • A Review of Strength, Aerobic Exercise and Osteoarthritis
  • 12-Week Exercise Program and Mental Health in Sedentary Women

Read the full issue of this week's of Health E-Review.

Health E-Review is available for IHRSA members only. For other member-only resources, visit


Women's Health looking for next 'it' trainer

Do you think you have what it takes to be the next Jillian Michaels?

If so, Women's Health may have the backing you need to be a fitness star. The magazine is hosting the Next Fitness Star contest, looking for the next "it" trainer. The winner will have her own DVD series and appear in the magazine.

The deadline is Feb. 1, 2013. Click here to see more on the contest.