The Oklahoma State Department of Health (OSDH) is celebrating Women’s Health Month during May. Women are encouraged to take steps toward being their healthiest as they are often primary caretakers of their families, and should make their health a priority. In particular, women of childbearing age are encouraged to be in good health before and during pregnancy to help give baby a healthy start to life.
Achieving and maintaining a healthy weight can promote wellness before, during and after pregnancy. Being at a healthy weight can benefit women of all ages by reducing the risk of heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, and may result in taking less pain medication. Being in good physical health also promotes good mental health. Women are almost twice as likely as men to experience depression.
Steps toward better health include:
· Setting health goals such as being active and maintaining a healthy weight.
· Eating fruits and vegetables every day.
· Drinking more water and less sugary drinks.
· Taking prescription medication only as prescribed.
· Getting regular checkups and preventive screenings
· Taking time for yourself with activities you enjoy.
Health officials recognize that making healthy choices can be challenging. Limited access to healthy foods, unsafe neighborhoods for physical activity, and busy schedules can be barriers to achieving health goals. It’s never too late to take actions to promote good health by starting with small steps for long-term benefits.
For more information on women and health, visit Office on Women’s Health at www.womenshealth.gov. Preparing for a Lifetime offers information on being healthy before and between pregnancy at http://iio.health.ok.gov. The Shape Your Future Program offers many resources on good health at https://shapeyourfutureok.com.