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Health Wellness

PCOD Diet Chart: Foods to Eat and Avoid

The condition of PCOD is a lifestyle disease commonly seen among women today. While its exact causes are unknown, some common issues triggering PCOD include poor lifestyle, stress, obesity and other associated disorders.. With early diagnosis and preventive steps such as weight loss and PCOD specific diet , you can reduce the risk of long-term health complications related to heart and type 2 diabetes. Symptoms of PCOD? Recognising the early signs and symptoms of PCOD can help you keep the disorder in control. You must understand that not all symptoms and signs of PCOD are similar for every woman. Despite varying from one person to the other, they are treatable with a good PCOD Diet Plan and exercise. For many, PCOD starts at puberty when their first menstrual period hits. As for many others, PCOD may develop due to a poor lifestyle resulting in weight gain. For a better understanding of this common lifestyle disease, let us check the symptoms. If you experience two or more of these symptoms, consult a medical practitioner: 1. Irregular Periods This is one of the most common symptoms of PCOD. The irregularities in one’s menstrual cycle can range from two months to 7 months and even more in some cases. The menstrual disturbances caused by PCOD can also result in abnormally heavy periods, lasting for days. 2. Excess Levels of Androgen An increase in male hormone levels called androgen is another factor that causes PCOD. One of the early signs of androgen-induced-PCOS is sudden growth in facial and body hair. Also known as hirsutism, this condition causes unwanted hair growth in the chin area, abdomen, back, upper arms and legs and around the breast area. Severe acne and male-pattern baldness are other signs of hirsutism. 3. Polycystic Ovaries In PCOD, the ovaries tend to enlarge as several small-sized fluid-filled sacs start growing inside them. Also known as follicles, these sacs contain immature eggs that cannot ovulate. These cysts further alter the progesterone, oestrogen, FSH and LH levels, causing androgen to rise. How Can a PCOD Diet Chart Help? By following a PCOD Diet Chart, you can start to control the symptoms of PCOD and maintain a healthy life. The diet charts usually recommend the consumption of green and leafy vegetables, along with foods that help supply the body with enough nutrients. When making a PCOD Diet chart , ensure to include foods rich in nutrients such as calcium, iron, protein, potassium, magnesium and multiple vitamins, including vitamin B.  Two primary ways that diet impacts PCOD are insulin production and resistance and weight management. It is important to note that Insulin plays a vital role in PCOD.  Therefore, following a diet to manage insulin levels is one of the best steps to managing the condition. For best results, follow a diet that meets your nutritional requirements, keeps excess weight under check and promotes good insulin levels. Foods to Include in Your PCOD Diet Chart Plan Let us check out foods that are a definite yes to control the symptoms of PCOD: 1. Fruits Your PCOD Diet Plan should definitely include fruits daily. You may add fruits like red grapes, cherries, blueberries, blackberries, strawberries and apples to your diet. These fruits are low in glycaemic index (GI), helpful for insulin sensitivity. 2. Vegetables Green leafy vegetables, including kale, broccoli and spinach, are excellent additions to a PCOD Diet Chart. They can also prove beneficial in improving blood circulation and skin health. 3. High-fibre Fibre-rich foods such as beans, avocados, nuts, peas and oranges help keep PCOS symptoms under control and should be a part of the PCOD Diet Chart. 4. Nuts Many nuts such as walnuts, almonds, pistachios and pine nuts are good sources of healthy fats that help to treat PCOD. 5. Fish While you can include lean meats in your diet, a PCOD Diet Plan For Weight Loss must feature omega-rich and fatty fish such as salmon, sardines, mackerel and tuna. Foods to Avoid in PCOD As PCOD is a lifestyle disease, you must follow specific diet restrictions. It would be best to avoid packed and processed foods that are also harmful overall to the body. 1. Refined Carbs It is best to avoid refined carbs such as pastries, bread, breakfast cereals, pizzas and anything containing white flour. 2. Sugary Beverages A PCOD Diet Plan For Weight Loss is meaningless unless you put a stop to the consumption of all forms of sugary drinks like sodas, sports drinks, sweetened waters and more. 3. Processed Meats If you wish to cure PCOD, forget processed meats that come in the form of sausages, salamis, hot dogs and more Conclusion To conclude, like every lifestyle disease, PCOD too can be controlled and cured with minute attention to diet and exercise. You may consult a doctor for efficient treatment who is qualified to suggest what PCOD Diet will suit you best. Besides guiding your diet, the doctor can suggest behavioural strategies from goal-setting to self-monitoring techniques to help you achieve your goals better and quicker. As a preventive measure, it would help to take a PCOS profile - 3 Test without delay as soon as you notice any of the symptoms mentioned above. Along with this doctors also recommend regular testing of sugar and cholesterol levels as these may also contribute to PCOD.

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Health Wellness

A Healthy Pregnancy Diet Plan Every Woman Should Know

Introduction Do you know that a pregnant woman requires approximately 300 extra calories per day to maintain a healthy pregnancy? Yes, that’s right! To gain these calories, one must follow the best diet for pregnant women, which includes whole grains, protein, fruits, and vegetables. Furthermore, sweets and unhealthy fats must be kept to a minimum. We know how challenging it is to carve out a balanced and healthy daily diet for pregnant women. Therefore, we bring you a list of beneficial foods and beverages for an ideal Indian diet for pregnant women. This food list takes care of the nutritional needs of the baby and ensures the holistic health of the mother-to-be. Diet for Pregnant Women: Pre-Breakfast Snack Ideas Dry fruits (10 to 12 pieces) One glass of cow milk (plain) Banana milkshake Almond milk Carrot juice Tomato juice Apple juice Breakfast Ideas Bowl of fruit salad (including apricots, apples, dates, banana, sweet fig, and oranges) Rava upma with vegetables Vegetable poha with chillas Oats with 2 boiled eggs Vegetable omelette Whole wheat toast, butter, and omelette Stuffed parathas (with fillings of potatoes, dal, spinach, carrots, paneer, or beans) with curd Cheese and vegetable sandwich Cheese toast Rice sevai with vegetables Vegetable khandvi Mid-Morning Snack Ideas Chicken soup Spinach soup Tomato soup Carrot and beetroot soup Creamy spinach soup Pumpkin (kaddu) soup Banana milkshake Diet for Pregnant Women: Lunch Ideas Plain paratha with curd and a bowl of dal Chapati with dal, curd, and a bowl of vegetable Peas and carrot stuffed paratha made with butter and a bowl of curd Vegetable khichdi Curd rice Rice and chicken curry Green peas pulao or jeera pulao with raita Rice, vegetables, and dal with a green salad Rice, dal, vegetable raita with one fruit Pea lemon rice with a green salad Chicken salad with vegetable soup Grilled chicken with curd Rice with kofta curry Paneer paratha made with butter and green salad Stuffed paratha with sprouts salad Evening Snack Ideas Chicken cutlet Bread cutlet Chicken sandwich Corn and cheese sandwich Roasted peanuts Dry fruits with dried dates Milk porridge with sevai, oats, or daliya Vegetable daliya Tomato and spinach idli Vegetable idli Mixed-veg uttapam Vegetable sevai Carrot halwa Lauki halwa Fresh fruit smoothie (banana or strawberry) A cup of green tea Dinner Ideas Chicken rice or vegetable pulao with a bowl of curd Mixed dal khichdi, curd, vegetable curry Rice, spinach veggie, dal, green salad Plain paratha with curd (or buttermilk) Roti, dal, vegetable of choice, curd (or buttermilk) Diet for Pregnant Women: Foods and Beverages to Consume Water: Drinking about 10 to 12 glasses of water is imperative during pregnancy. Adequate water helps the protective fluid (or amniotic fluid) around the foetus and boosts better digestion as well. Dairy products: They are loaded with rich nutrients like vitamins and calcium that assist the baby’s development. Leafy green vegetables and broccoli: Dark green vegetables like broccoli are a good source of folate, antioxidants, and vitamins, including A, B6, C, and K. They promote haemoglobin supply, healthy bones, and keep skin problems at bay. Sweet potatoes: Sweet potatoes contain high levels of beta carotene (vitamin), which is vital for fetal growth and development. Salmon: Regular consumption of salmon must be included in the Indian diet for pregnant women as it can boost docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), commonly known as an omega-3 fatty acid. The need for docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) increases during the third semester of pregnancy. Legumes: Enriched with plant-based nutrients like iron, protein, fibre, and calcium, legumes are a good source of plant-based nutrients that must be included in the daily diet of pregnant women. Eggs: Eggs are amongst the best sources of protein. They boost amino acids and choline, among other beneficial vitamins and minerals. Lean meat: A healthy diet for pregnant women must include good quality protein, which comes from lean meat. Lean meat has good amounts of iron, vitamin B, and essential minerals. Berries: Berries help in increasing your water intake as they pack lots of water and nutrients like healthy carbohydrates, fibres, and vitamin C. Dry fruits: A handful of dry fruits pack zinc, potassium, calcium, and fibre. They prevent constipation during pregnancy. Whole grains: The growing foetus requires minerals and vitamin B for its development. Whole grains are fortified with folic acid and provide essential nutrients required by the baby. Food and Beverages to Avoid During Pregnancy Unwashed food: Unwashed fruits, vegetables, and especially meat can expose you to toxoplasma gondii (a harmful parasite), which can cause serious complications in pregnancy. Caffeine: While chalking out the best diet for pregnant women, caffeine must always be kept out of the list! Caffeine is known to increase your blood pressure and heart rate, both of which are detrimental and risky in pregnancy. Alcohol: Alcohol consumption can lead to structural defects in the baby. If a woman consumes alcohol in the first trimester, the chance of abnormal facial features in the baby rises. Processed junk foods: Junk food cravings are real and happen to all women during pregnancy. However, you must always stay away from processed junk foods (like cookies, candies, pizza, burgers, and baked goodies made from white flour) as they can increase the toxic acrylamide levels in the mother’s body. Unpasteurised foods: Unpasteurised foods, including fruit juice, milk, or cheese, may contain food-borne illnesses causing bacteria like E. coli, campylobacter jejuni, and listeria. Raw sprouts: Raw sprouts are not among the ideal diet for pregnant women, and their consumption can make you sick. Raw sprouts grow in warm and humid conditions, an environment that is conducive for bacteria to flourish. Raw or undercooked fish: Raw fish contain bacteria, parasites, and microorganisms, which exposes you to several illnesses. Undercooked and processed meat: Undercooked meat that carries microorganisms can make you sick. Processed meat that contains listeria bacteria can cause vomiting and food poisoning among pregnant women. Raw eggs: Raw eggs contain the bacteria called salmonella, and their consumption can lead to a host of health problems like food poisoning, diarrhoea, and vomiting. Conclusion Good eating habits in pregnancy have a long-lasting positive effect on your baby’s growth and development. A healthy diet for pregnant women also ensures a hassle-free pregnancy experience. Based on these suggestions, a personalized diet chart can be formulated in consultation with your doctor and dietician.  

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Health Wellness

Antenatal Care - Assuring a Hassle-Free Pregnancy

Pregnancy is a fascinating process, beginning with conception and ending with childbirth. A woman's body goes through several changes that are helpful for her and the development of the foetus. Some changes can lead to complications without proper care or monitoring during the antenatal period. Timely corrective actions during every stage help to prevent the risks and complications of pregnancy, ensuring the safe delivery of a healthy child. Purpose of Professional Care During The Antenatal Period The antenatal period comprises three trimesters. The care during the antenatal period in pregnancy encompasses all trimesters, from the time of conception to childbirth. Antenatal care aims to detect and treat pre-existing health issues or those likely to develop during pregnancy. A good ANC (antenatal care) is a crucial bond between the expecting mother and the healthcare system. Standard antenatal care involves periodic visits to the obstetrician. They will recommend routine screening and diagnostic tests to monitor the mother's health and the development of the foetus. It helps in the timely detection of health concerns. The obstetrician will offer valuable guidance and care tips by examining various health parameters during the antenatal period. What to Expect During Periodic Antenatal Care Visits The selection of an expert obstetrician should be your priority as soon as you decide to have a baby. Ensure that the maternity home has all the necessary amenities and is not too far from your residence. It will reduce the stress of travelling long distances during antenatal appointments and the final stage of labour pains. The obstetrician will conduct various tests and scans depending on the stage of the pregnancy. The following are a few objectives for frequent visits during the antenatal period. Understanding the history of past pregnancies, if any Knowing about pre-existing conditions like diabetes or hypertension Understanding themedications you are on. Tips for a healthy diet and exercise to ensure the well-being of the mother and the growing foetus Regular checking of weight, blood pressure, and other health parameters Blood tests and ultrasound scans determine the health of the baby Treating stress, anxiety, or depression, if you are experiencing any of these issues You will visit the obstetrician for routine antenatal care a minimum of seven to eight times during the entire period of pregnancy. Use these visits to discuss any symptoms that may bother you, such as morning sickness, sleep disturbances, and loss of appetite with the obstetrician. Antenatal Care During Each Trimester Every mother must receive proper antenatal, intranatal, and postnatal care for her wellbeing and consistent growth of the baby right from the time of conception. The type of care during each trimester of the antenatal period differs as your baby goes through different growth stages. Your doctor needs to keep track of the baby's growth and your health for a smooth pregnancy and safe delivery. Every antenatal visit helps your obstetrician address several health concerns to prevent likely complications. Read further to know how antenatal appointments during each trimester can benefit you and your baby. The First Trimester The first three months of your pregnancy is crucial for your baby's development. Your obstetrician will probably recommend supplements to improve your body's iron, vitamin, and folic acid levels. You may need to take these supplements even before and after conceiving. Good nutrition through a well-balanced diet and supplements is crucial for the healthy growth of the fetus and your health. Monitoring your weight is a standard practice in antenatal visits during the initial trimesters. An ultrasound scan will help your doctor check the development of the foetus. It will also enable them to share the likely delivery date with you. The ultrasound scanning is necessary throughout antenatal care to track the growth and other health parameters of the foetus, including heartbeats and blood pressure. The antenatal tests to be done at this stage are very crucial to determine various parameters like blood group, Rh antibodies, haemoglobin, screening for infections, thyroid markers, diabetes screening, and thalassemia screening.  The non-invasive pregnancy tests and Karyotypic screening are also done as prescribed by the doctor. Discuss ongoing medications with your doctor. Stop or avoid certain medications during the first trimesters, as these may harm the foetus during the early growth stages. Visit us for the Antenatal Profile - I Test The Second Trimester You will visit your obstetrician once in four weeks through the second trimester. The obstetrician uses ultrasound to assess the baby's structural development of the genitourinary, skeletal, and digestive systems. They can detect anomalies in various organ systems, like kidneys and the heart during this antenatal period. Blood and urine tests during this period canevaluateblood cell count, infections, blood sugar levels, and proteins. The obstetrician will also get measurements of the uterus, including the size and shape. They may suggest calcium and iron supplements in the initial phase of the second trimester if necessary. The AFP test,  triple and quadruple marker tests are indicated in this stage as recommended by the treating doctor. The NIPT and Karyotyping tests are also done as recommended.  Kindly mention about Antenatal Profile -II , NIPT tests and AFP tests. The Third Trimester The third trimester is the third and last phase of the antenatal period. The fortnightly prenatal visits during the third trimester are vital as the baby moves downwards by assuming a head-down position. The obstetrician will recommend routine checks like ultrasound, blood test, urine test, weight, and blood pressure. The ultrasound scan will help you know your baby's measurements, heart rate, and other details. Visits during the antenatal period of the third-trimester help doctors identify growth abnormalities or placental issues. These are vital factors for safe delivery and proper growth of the foetus. You must not miss following the appointment schedule despite your sound health. Conclusion Antenatal care refers to the periodic appointments with the obstetrician during the antenatal period in pregnancy. Visiting your obstetrician regularly during the antenatal period is significant for the healthy growth of your baby as well as your good health. Do not miss your appointments with the obstetrician, as there is no alternative to expert antenatal care. Besides these visits, you must contact the doctor immediately if you notice any change in the foetal movements. Carry a notebook listing your queries during every visit and get answers from the doctor. Your partner should accompany you during the antenatal visits for better involvement for the entire duration of your pregnancy. Contact us for a reliable Antenatal Profile - I Test

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Health Wellness

PCOS Diet for Effective Treatment - Foods to Include and Avoid

Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is one of the most common endocrine disorders faced by women today, mostly in reproductive age. While there is no cure for PCOS, research suggests that certain dietary and lifestyle changes can help you manage the condition better. If you have PCOS, your doctor may recommend a personalised PCOS diet plan to help prevent the symptoms and potential complications that may occur due to the condition's associated hormonal imbalances, insulin resistance, and inflammation. Hustling at home and workplace? Ladies, do not ignore your health amidst these priorities! Book a comprehensive health check up here. PCOS symptoms to watch out for Many who suffer from this know what it is and what its symptoms are, but there are many who are not even aware that they suffer from it. So to begin with, let’s discuss what exactly it is. PCOS is considered a syndrome since it has various manifestations, including:   Irregular periods, missed periods or very light periods Ovaries that are large or have many cysts. Excessive body hair, including the face, chest, stomach, and back (hirsutism) Weight gain, especially around the belly (abdomen) Pimples Hair loss Fertility issues At large, infrequent or irregular menstrual periods remain the primary concern which brings women to the doctor’s office. Ignoring it may lead to several other complications like diabetes, infertility, sleep apnea, depression, cancer, and heart-related problems. To reduce the risk, it’s always best to consult a gynaecologist and start treatment as soon as you become aware of the problem. Foods to include in your diet Women with PCOS need to follow a diet where their nutritional needs are met while maintaining a healthy weight. Here is a look at the most important points while planning your daily diet in PCOS: A low glycemic index (GI) diet: Foods with low GI get digested slowly and blood sugar rises gradually and slowly, thus insulin levels rise at a much slower rate. The improvement in insulin levels seems to be beneficial for PCOS. Any unprocessed low carbohydrate food, whole grains, nuts, seeds, fruits, starchy vegetables, and legumes all come under this category. An anti-inflammatory diet: A diet that reduces fatigue and inflammation-related symptoms is helpful too. Here consuming berries, leafy greens, and extra virgin oil is recommended by experts. The DASH diet: Or what is known as the Dietary Approach to Stop Hypertension- also helps to manage PCOS. Foods that are high in saturated fat and sugar are a big NO. A Dash diet is rich in whole grains, seasonal fruits and vegetables, low-fat dairy products, fish, and poultry. Basically, whatever harms your heart, increases weight, and dysregulates insulin levels are to be avoided. Instead, what should be included in your daily food are the following- 1. Natural unprocessed foods enable vitamin absorption, and healthy nutrient intake and lead to weight loss. 2. High-fibre foods like oats and millets can lower cholesterol and inflammation in the body as well as stabilise blood sugar levels. 3. Fish –salmon, tuna, sardines, and foods rich in vitamins can aid in improving insulin resistance and decrease the severity of symptoms associated with PCOS. 4. Leafy greens like spinach, kale, and mustard leaves which are low in the glycaemic index but rich in phytochemicals, vitamins, and antioxidants can be eaten raw as in salads or pureed and made into exotic dishes. 5. Coloured fruits– red grapes, blueberries, blackberries, cherries, papaya, melon, are all rich in antioxidants and fibre but low in glycemic index and as such can prove helpful for PCOS patients.  They also satisfy the sweet cravings. But going on an only fruit diet or consuming only fruits is not recommended. It’s better to eat most fruits with their skin and avoid drinking juices as the latter don’t have fibres and usually increase the sugar level faster than when we eat them. 6. Vegetables- broccoli, cauliflower, avocados, green beans, and carrots which are a rich source of magnesium, help to boost immunity and prevent obesity so are good for people suffering from PCOS. At least try to eat 25 gms of such veggies daily.   7. Legumes- dried beans like rajma, lentils, moong, and split peas all work to lower inflammation and insulin levels so ladies should include them in their diet. 8. Healthy fats- olive oil, coconuts, and vegetable oils with low omega 6 fatty acids help to increase hormone production, and fat is a biological necessity that aids in vitamin absorption and improving brain and heart function. 9. Nuts – pine nuts, walnuts, almonds, and pistachios all have the right balance of mono-saturated fats to help balance female hormones and should be consumed in moderation. 10. Chocolate- dark ones in moderation work as antioxidants, and hence curtail the effects of PCOS. 11. Spices- turmeric, cinnamon, black pepper, ginger, cumin, and saffron have proven to be very effective in dealing with PCOS, and including them in your daily diet is very beneficial for anyone’s health. Include most of the above-mentioned food in your daily diet in different combinations- the result should be to maintain a stable weight with controlled insulin levels. Eat small meals but at regular intervals. Foods to exclude from your diet All said and done, it is also necessary to know what should be avoided – what should be excluded from your diet. For unless one does that it’s no use eating healthy and negating the whole effect by eating unhealthy food too. Certain food that should be avoided in dealing with PCOS are- 1.     Bakery products made using saturated fats 2.     Fried and fast food 3.     Sugary beverages and ready to drink energy drinks 4.     Processed meats 5.     Unhealthy fats that raises cholesterol like trans-fat 6.     Excess red meat A good-balanced diet plays a pivotal role in dealing with the consequences of PCOS, especially losing weight, and controlling inflammation and insulin levels. The right diet can heal and help in dealing with PCOS better! Make healthy choices in your daily eating.  

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Health Wellness

Menopause calls for a pause: Look back and Set the Pace

Menopause is the time in a woman’s reproductive cycle which marks the end of her periods. It might seem like “a good thing” to many young women, especially those who have a painful menses, or find it to be a draining time period that just appears every month. However, menopause indicates that the woman’s body is going through various hormonal changes, and some of these changes may bring unpleasant experiences. It can really be a tough transition phase for many women.Women around us usually keep neglecting their health to take care of everyone else around them. Book a health checkup and be aware if they need any medical help. How to know if it is menopause or something else? Basically, it is the age combined with the change in menstrual cycle. It is diagnosed after consecutive 12 months have passed without a period. In general, the natural menopause occurs between 45 and 55 years of age. As per different studies, the range of mean age at menopause reported in Indian women appears to be rather young, between 41.9 and 49.4 years.* How do the menopause symptoms feel like? First and foremost, the changing levels of estrogen and progesterone, two important female hormones produced by the ovaries, causes symptoms to appear. Not all women experience all symptoms. They may include: Change in your period: Irregular periods Dryness in vagina Hot flashes Chills Night sweats Problems with falling asleep Mood changes or mood swings Weight gain and a slow metabolism Medical tests for menopauseAt large,menopause can be self-diagnosed. If you are not able to relate to the pattern, do consult a doctor. Also, there is no single lab test that can reliably predicts if a woman is going through menopause. However, a few blood tests may help your doctor understand your body. A simple blood test that checks your body’s levels of follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and estrogen can be asked for. During menopause, FSH levels rise and estrogen levels decline. Book FSH test here. Many times, hypothyroidism or low thyroid hormone levels can also mimic symptoms that are similar to menopause. Hence, an additional blood test to check on the thyroid function can be required.Book thyroid panel here 5 tips to deal with menopause symptoms 1. Acknowledge your mood changes and seek help The mood changes that come with menopause can get you crying or cranky. Understand that it is not unnatural to happen during this time. Some women may get even bigger mood swings than you. Take control of your mind with relaxation techniques and yoga. Do fun things with friends or family. If you think these measures are not helping, seek help from a medical expert. They may prescribe medicines including  a low-dose birth control pill and antidepressants. 2. Learn and find ways to “tackle the hair problem” Around menopause, you can find your hair to thin or shed faster. At the same time, unwanted hair may grow on your chin and cheeks. Do not overdo hair care products. Avoid the sun, which is drying hair and can cause damage. For unwanted facial hair, take help of wax, bleach, pluck, or laser therapies. If you use hair color, choose coloring products that don't have harsh chemicals. 3. Revive sex driveIt is very common to have a reduced sex drive during menopause. This occurs due to decreased hormone levels that can cause vaginal dryness and tightness, resulting in pain during sex. Speak with your partner around the challenges you face. This is the time to downplay the focus on sex and set priority on making time to be together, along with foreplay, cuddles, massage, etc. Also, try keeping stress at bay as much as possible, as the mental pressure puts sex drive in park.4. Try helping yourselves down thereAround menopause, the vagina may get thinner and dryer. Consult a doctor and try water-based vaginal lubricants or vaginal moisturizer. Your expert can also give you prescription vaginal creams or rings, or pills to tackle these vaginal symptoms and painful sex. Also remember, sex can increase the blood flow down there, which keeps things healthy. 5. Keep a diary to track hot flashesIt iswise to know what sets off your hot flashes. It can be caffeine or alcohol, or just a hot room. If you feel a flash setting in, take slow, deep breaths, in your nose and out your mouth. For tough cases, speak with your doctor. What should you not do during menopause? Don’t assume your sex life is over: It is common for both women and men to have lower libido as they age. The sex hormones level may drop as we age, resulting in lower sex drive. You can try lubricants to tackle the pain that may ease the anxiety that comes with a previous painful experience. Also by this time, your relationship is above and beyond just sex. Don’t ignore mood changes: Menopause acts as a signal to your brains that your bodies are changing. Denying that fact can lead to some serious outcomes, including depression. Face the changes, do not feel helpless in the changing landscape, and let go of the irreversible ones. Don't blame menopause for your weight gain: Watch your diet and stay physically active. Preventing weight gain and obesity during your middle years is possible. Don't cut down on social support: You may feel disconnected at some times. However, some studies report that menopausal women who had better interactions with family and attended more monthly meetings, had better mental functioning. The takeaway is to accept your body. Stay strong and stay positive. Important links: Book your TSH test here Senior Citizen Health Checkup

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Health Wellness

Cervical Cancer: Becoming A Little Aware Can Save so Many Lives!

Cases of Cervical cancer, one of the most common forms of cancer in women, are on a steady rise in the country, accounting for many deaths that could be prevented. Shockingly our country accounts for nearly 1/3rd of the global cervical cancer deaths. Cervical cancer occurs in the cells of the cervix that is the lower part of the uterus that connects to the vagina, sometimes referred to as the neck of the womb.  Various strains of HPV, the Human papillomavirus which is a sexually transmitted infection are one of the major and most common factors of cervical cancer cases. When a body has been exposed to this, although the immune system prevents the virus from causing harm, it is still found that in certain people, this virus survives for years, and is responsible for some cervical cells becoming cancerous cells. When the cells do not die or continue dividing, thus resulting in abnormal growth or uncontrolled division, that leads to formation of lump or tumour, resulting in cancer. What are the signs? In the early stages of the cancer, one might not even experience any symptoms or show any possible signs of cancer at all. Women are hence often advised to get regular Cervical Smear tests or Pap Tests. Pap tests are usually just preventive tests that might not be able to detect the cancer, but can provide insights if there are any cell changes that could possibly be an indication of cancer development, so that necessary action can be taken at the earliest. Some of the most common symptoms following cervical cancer include- Heavy vaginal discharge following a foul odour Pain in the pelvic region Experiencing discomfort or pain during sexual intercourse Bleeding after sexual intercourse Vaginal discharge with blood Bleeding after menopause While these signs can also be due to an infection in the body, anyone experiencing these, should have themselves examined, or consult an expert at the earliest.   Kinds of the cervical cancer The correct diagnosis and effective treatment following the diagnosis can be done, if the type of cervical cancer can be known. The main types are Squamous cell carcinoma- this begins in the thin and flat cells that line the outer part of the cervix. Mostly cervical cancers are this kind. Adenocarcinoma- this begins in the column shaped glandular cells that line the cervical canal. Being aware of the type of cancer that one is suffering from, and starting appropriate treatment at an early stage, can help save life. Treatment and prevention Knowing which stage of cancer a person is on, helps decide the best treatment. Taking quick and assured steps to prevent the spread can adversely increase the chances of survival for a person. Cervical cancer is based on a 4 stage system. Basically these stages aim to inform, how far has the cancer spread, if it has spread to the distant organs or is under control. Stage 0, where the precancerous cells are present. Stage 1, cancer cells have penetrated into the uterus and the nearby lymph nodes. Stage 2, cancer goes beyond the cervix and the uterus. Stage 3, cancer cells found in the lower part of the vagina or the walls of the pelvis. Stage 4, spreads to the distant organs, affects the bladder or the rectum. The possible treatments include surgery, chemotherapy or radiotherapy. A doctor may also recommend colposcopy, i.e. the visual examination of the vagina using a magnifying instrument, or biopsy, CT Scan and/or cone biopsy, where the doctor takes a small cone shaped section of the abnormal tissue from the affected cervix for examination. Some of these might have an after effect; hence it is best advised to go to the doctor at the earliest signs of cancer. An expert can tell you based on the symptoms and stage of the cancer, what would be the best treatment moving forward, how to take care of the body, and overall health post diagnosis etc.   How can you prevent it? The risk of cervical cancer depends on the number of sexual partners, age at first intercourse, and sexual behavior of the woman’s male partner. Additional risk indicators for cervical cancer are number of live births, long-term use of oral contraceptives, and smoking. While certain precautions have to be taken, these might not eliminate the cancer cells, but can surely reduce the risk associated with the same- Practice safe sex: Limiting the number of sexual partners and taking correct measures to prevent oneself from sexually transmitted infections, because the transmission of the HPV usually occurs as a result of coming in contact with a person who has HPV. Get vaccinated: Ask your doctor for getting the HPV vaccine, which can reduce the risk and infection of cervical cancer. Quit smoking: Smoking not only aggravates cervical cancer but is also responsible for other kinds of cancers. Cervical cancer screening: Apart from the regular Pap tests, it is also important to get screening done, to identify and deal with the disease, before it gets late. The earlier the diagnosis is done, the better is the success rate of the following treatment and hence better are the chances of survival. Being a little aware of the body, taking care of it and getting your facts right, can go a long way in contributing to a healthy and safe life. Looking to book your health package? Get an all-inclusive test package in the Metropolis Labs. 

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Health Wellness

Infertility in Women: Causes, Diagnosis and Prevention

  Scientifically speaking, infertility is a common reproductive condition defined by the inability to have a successful clinical pregnancy after at least a year of regular unprotected sexual intercourse. It is becoming more common worldwide, especially in many urban areas where women are planning their first babies at older ages. At least 10% of women have some kind of infertility. Infertility can be of two types – primary and secondary. The term primary infertility means that a woman has never conceived and secondary infertility means that the woman has experienced a pregnancy before and unable to conceive later. While infertility causes can be difficult to diagnose, it is very crucial to get tested for regular health updates to stay in the know. Book an exclusive women’s health package here.   Causes of infertility in women There are varied possible causes of infertility in women. Some possible causes of female factor infertility may include:   Ovulation disorders Infrequent or no ovulation at all accounts for most cases of infertility. Several reasons such as hormonal imbalances, thyroid conditions, pituitary tumors, severe stress, substance abuse and a past eating disorder can affect ovulation. Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), the most common cause of female infertility, causes a hormone imbalance, which affects ovulation.  Hypothalamic dysfunction can significantly affect female fertility. Follicle-stimulating hormone (FSH) and luteinizing hormone (LH) produced by the pituitary gland are responsible for stimulating ovulation each month. Emotional distress, extreme high or extreme low body weight, or a recent significant weight gain or loss can affect production of these hormones and cause ovulation disorders. Premature ovarian failure or primary ovarian insufficiency occurs when the ovaries stop working normally before the age of 40. The ovaries don’t produce eggs and normal amounts of the hormone estrogen and this condition often leads to infertility. Hyperprolactinemia, excess production of prolactin by pituitary gland, can reduce estrogen production and lead to infertility. Uterine causes Several uterine causes can prevent egg implantation or increase the risk of miscarriage. Benign polyps or fibroids can block fallopian tubes or interfere with egg implantation, affecting fertility. Polyps and fibroids can form on their own at any time, whereas other uterus abnormalities, such as an unusually shaped uterus, are present at birth.   Tubal factors Blocked fallopian tubes block the passage of the fertilized egg into the uterus and prevent sperm to get to the egg. The most common cause of tubal infertility is a pelvic inflammatory disease, an infection of the uterus and fallopian tubes usually caused by chlamydia, gonorrhea, or other sexually transmitted infections.   Cervical causes Cervical causes may include cervical stenosis (narrowing of the cervix) which can be caused by an inherent malformation, cervical surgical procedure, or damage to the cervix. Some women may have a cervical condition in which the sperm cannot travel through the cervical canal due to abnormal mucus production.   Unexplained infertility In some instances, the cause of infertility is never found. A combination of various minor factors in male and female partners could cause unexplained infertility.   Diagnosis of infertility in women Your doctor will evaluate your physical symptoms and ask for laboratory and radiological tests. If you or your partner has known fertility problems, or if you have a history of irregular or painful periods, unusual vaginal bleeding or discharge, pelvic pain, cancer treatment, endometriosis, or any past pregnancies miscarriages, pelvic infections, or sexually transmitted infections, and you are facing problems with conception, do consult your doctor for a timely diagnosis.   Some tests your healthcare provider will run to diagnose infertility may include: Ovarian function testing Ovarian reserve test helps to determine the quality and quantity of eggs available for ovulation. A blood test for progesterone (a hormone produced after ovulation) can also signals ovulation. Other hormone levels, such as thyroid, pituitary and prolactin, also might be checked.   Hysterosalpingography (HSG) It is a radiological procedure used to evaluate tubal patency. A dye is injected into the uterus through the cervix and simultaneously X-Ray pictures are taken to see how the dye moves through the fallopian tube. Spillage of dye into the abdominal cavity indicates that tubes are patent   Laparoscopy It is a minimally invasive surgery that involves the insertion of a small monitoring instrument called a laparoscope into the abdomen to visualize abdominal and pelvic organs. Using laparoscopy, the healthcare provider can diagnose blockages of the fallopian tubes, endometriosis, scarring and other problems with the ovaries and uterus.   Transvaginal ultrasound This test is done by inserting an ultrasound transducer into the vagina. It allows a better view of organs like the uterus and ovaries. It is used to detect ovulation in females and any abnormality in uterus and adnexa.                           Saline sonohysterogram Sometimes also called a saline infusion sonogram (SIS) is used to look at the lining of the uterus and examine for polyps, fibroids or other structural abnormalities.   Hysteroscopy This test is indicated for intrauterine space-occupying lesions detected on a hysterosalpingography. In this test, a hysteroscope is inserted into the vagina through the cervix. The healthcare provider moves it into the uterus to examine the inside of the organ.   Genetic testing Chromosomal karyotyping is used for suspected genetic disorders that may be causing infertility.   Prevention Most forms of female infertility cannot be prevented. However, it is possible to control the risk factors that may contribute to infertility. Lifestyle modifications may include: Maintain a healthy weight Weight management is an important factor in preventing and treating infertility. Underweight and overweight women ovulate less regularly compared to women of a healthy weight.   Quit Smoking If you smoke and are thinking about getting pregnant soon or in the future, quit now. As tobacco has multiple negative impacts on your fertility and your general health. Smoking can also affect the health of a developing fetus.   Avoid alcohol Heavy alcohol use can lead to decreased fertility. And any alcohol use can affect the fetus’s health. If you're considering pregnancy, avoid alcohol. Limiting alcohol will have a beneficial impact on a couple’s ability to conceive.   manage stress well Some studies have shown a possible connection between stress and infertility. It is found that the more stressed the woman is prior to or during treatment, the lower the pregnancy rates. Finding the time for leisure and enjoyment is a healthy step to reduce stress levels and improves your physical and emotional health.   Develop the habit of exercise Moderate exercise can help in bringing regularity to your menstrual cycle and improve your overall health. But excessive intense exercise can disturb the menstrual cycle and results in decreased ovulation.   PRACTICE safe sex Practice safe sex to avoid sexually transmitted diseases, such as chlamydia and gonorrhea.   The final word Infertility can cause psychological-emotional stress disorders in both men and women. But being diagnosed with infertility doesn’t mean that your dreams of having a child have come to an end. With proper medical assistance, a number of infertile women will eventually be able to have a child. The right treatment will depend on factors, such as age, the cause of infertility, and off course your personal choices. If a fertility problem cannot be treated, your doctor may suggest considering donor sperm or eggs, surrogacy, or adoption.

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