Put the Sizzle Back into Sex!

February 13, 2013

Has the “free love” generation lost its mojo?  Many baby boomer gals, seem to answer, ‘yes’.  In fact, millions of women enter perimenopause and then menopause and beyond, and say they check their sex drive at the door, and most are not happy about it.

According to Laura Corio, MD, a gynecologist and clinical instructor at Mt. Sinai Medical Center in New York City, “I don’t think a day goes by when at least one patient – and usually more – complain that their sex drive is dropping off and want to know what they can do about it.”

Corio believes this problem, clinically known as HSDD (hypoactive sexual desire disorder) isn’t affecting more women, but more are coming forward, prompted, at least in part, by the success of male potency drugs like Viagra.

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Male sex drive is easy to define and relatively easy to restore, but that is not the case for women.  A female’s sex drive is “multifunctional,” and therefore the desire to make love is not only influenced by physical issues, but emotional ones as well.

Doctors have contributed emotions behind the loss of sex drive, but frequently it is the aging processes itself.  Indeed, as many women are aware, Mother Nature built in a natural increase in the desire for sex beginning just prior to ovulation, and lasting several days afterwards — not coincidentally, the only time of the month conception is possible.  When a women stops ovulating, she loses that regularly scheduled boost in her sex drive that has been present since puberty.

Moreover, around menopause, when there is also less estrogen circulating in your body, that too can bring your sex drive down for the count.

“Estrogen is a mood elevator, it works in the brain to maintain interest in sex, but it also works at the level of the genitals, helping to increase sensation and just making sex more pleasurable,” says Corio.  Without it, she says, not only can desire take a dive, vaginal tissue begins to dry and shrink. As a result, intercourse can become uncomfortable, or even painful.

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It’s time to put the sizzle in sex!  While estrogen levels are important, the latest research shows that the male hormone testosterone also plays a role in a woman’s sex drive. Though present in only tiny amounts, some doctors say it’s the seasoning that makes her sex drive sizzle.

For many women who are otherwise healthy, a drop in testosterone that occurs at midlife is the reason for a decrease in sexual desire.  And, studies show that sometimes the very treatments women take to control midlife symptoms — such as HRT — can actually disrupt desire by robbing the body of testosterone.

“When these hormones are taken orally, they are metabolized by the liver, which in turn puts out a protein that binds to testosterone, causing a deficiency,” says Corio.

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To find your mojo again, look to The Wiley Protocol.  Topical doses of estrogen and testosterone could be the key to the best sex of your life.  Wiley says, “As a women ages her libido and desire for sex often diminishes. Testosterone can plays a key role in libido, energy, and immune function in women. Produced by the ovaries, testosterone, over the course of the menstrual cycle, has a rhythm in women.

Testosterone levels are highest for a woman in the early twenties, but by the time she approaches and enters menopause there may be a testosterone deficiency. The replacement of estrogen alone may not correct loss of muscle tone, absent sex drive, or general lack of mental function. The Wiley Protocol Testosterone cream for women is biomimetic and replicates feminine testosterone hormone rhythms.”

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Be Dedicated to Sleep in 2013!

January 24, 2013

January has always been a time for looking back to the past, but more importantly, forward to the coming year.  It’s a time to reflect on the changes we want (or need) to make and resolve to follow through on those changes.  In 2012, the most common resolution was to lose weight and I am sure for years past and year to come, it will remain the number one goal for many Americans.  With January underway, was your resolution to lose weight?  Well, don’t just plan on counting your calories and buying a gym membership.

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According to the Canadian Medical Association Journal, adequate sleep is as important part of a weight loss plan, as the usual mix of diet and exercise.  There is significant evidence that inadequate sleep is contributing to obesity.  In fact, lack of sleep increases the stimulus to consume more food and increases appetite-regulating hormones.  According to Dr. Jean-Phillippe Chaput of the Children’s Hospital of Eastern Ontario Research Institute, “the solution to weight loss is not as simple as ‘eat less, move more’.  An accumulating body of evidence suggests that sleep habits should not be overlooked when prescribing a weight-reduction program to a patient with obesity.  Sleep should be included as part of the lifestyle package that traditionally has focused on diet and physical activity.”  Additional research has been found that total sleep time and quality of sleep predicted the loss of fat in people enrolled in a weight loss program.

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Further research suggests that sleep behavior affects body weight control and that sleep loss has ramifications not only for how many calories we consume but also for how much energy we burn off.   Many scientists are finding a relationship between insufficient sleep and an increase in risk of gaining weight and developing diabetes.  This research is telling us when we are sleep deprived we are likely to eat more calories because we are hungrier.  This alone might cause us to gain weight over time.  However, sleep loss also means we burn off fewer calories which adds to the risk of gaining weight.  The research clearly supports the notion that sleep is involved in the balance between the amount of calories we eat and the amount we use up through activity and metabolism.

So, this year, vow to sleep more in 2013 – you won’t be sorry you did!

The Big Business of Breast Cancer

December 4, 2012

October has come and gone, but the backlash of Breast Cancer Awareness month are here to stay.  The brand of Breast Cancer Awareness is a mult-million dollar a year industry.  And, doesn’t it seem like every business is cashing in on the pink band-wagon?  According to Lea Goldman of Marie Claire magazine wrote, “Some six billion a year is committed to breast cancer research and awareness campaigns.  Is it any wonder that the disease has become a gold mine for pink profiteers?”

The simple reality is that this disease is being used to make a profit.  Glamorous breast cancer?  Sounds outrageous, right?  Yet that is how this illness is portrayed in our society.  The disease is not pretty and feminine and normal.  It is horrible.  And devastatingly, for those suffering, all of the glitz and commercialization are masking some harsh realities.

The Susan G. Komen for the Cure, and other breast cancer charities are heavily entwined with the commerce-side of the business, yet where is the focus on research, preventive measures and the truth of the disease?

The publicity, fanfare and mass marketing of merchandise have very little, if anything to do with actual breast cancer awareness.   Gayle Sulik writes, “These overwhelming events, fundraisers, and products do not give people the tools they need to face uncertain diagnoses, treatments and prognoses.  Nor will they keep anyone from going bankrupt to pay for them.  They will not help us to understand risk.  They will not keep cancer from returning, and will not save lives.”  (http://ow.ly/fCSPu)

As a society we are creating a fetish around women’s breasts at the expense of the bodies,   hearts and minds attached to them.  As a society, we cannot handle the seriousness around the disease.

Take this image for example.  The use of slang terms and portrayal of stylized images depicts breast cancer as glamorous.  Horrific is a more sensible term to describe the disease.  The slang detracts from the significance of the cancer and the affect on women and their bodies.  As a consequence to all of this nonsense, it has suppressed discussion of real cancer, rendering the sufferers those of whom all this is supposed to be fore – invisible.

The rubber bracelets and t-shirts and bumper stickers (need I go on?) are part of a new trend: sexy breast cancer.  These campaigns are trivializing the disease and it needs to be questioned how the funds raised are being spent.

            Companies selling products that contribute to obesity, a risk factor for cancer, are cashing in on the pink craze.  Corporate sponsorships, branding partnerships and a great number of nonprofits oriented to breast cancer contribute little or nothing to research, creating a superficial notion of “awareness.”                          

            Products like KFC and soda manufacturers are selling pink versions of things that have been associated with INCREASED INCIDENCE OF BREAST CANCER.  It’s insane.  In actuality, by partaking in these events and purchasing the pink goodies, it is perpetuating the Big Business of cancer, which is a crying shame.

I highly recommend checking out the book, Pink Ribbon Blues, by Gayle Sulik, and this video of  Ms. Sulik speaking at Siena College:

 


You Snooze, You Lose

November 6, 2012

You snooze, you lose…weight that is!  Yes, you heard us right.  When you sleep, you lose weight and ward off modern day diseases. This old adage used to refer to the great American lifestyle – you snooze and you lose your edge, your job, your money. But the world is coming to terms with the simple fact that just the opposite is true.

“Sleep debt is like credit card debt,” says Susan Zafarlotfi, PHD, Clinical Director of the Institute for Sleep and Wake Disorders at Hackensack University Medical Center in New Jersey.  “If you keep accumulating credit card debt, you will pay high interest rates.  If you accumulate too much sleep debt, your body will crash.”

And, unfortunately for Americans, not getting enough sleep is far too common. Our lack of sleep has wreaked havoc on our society. It is time we recognize the natural rhythms of light.

Artificial light affects us all in negative ways.  According to T.S. Wiley in her book Lights Out, “The biggest change human beings have lived through in the last ten thousand years happened less than seventy years ago.  Electricity and the widespread use of the light bulb qualify, along with the discovery of fire, the advent of agriculture, and the discovery of antibiotic treatment, as a point of no return in human history.”

When we don’t get enough sleep in sync with seasonal light exposure, we alter a balance of nature that has been programmed into our physiology since day one.  This delicate biological rhythm rules the hormones and neurotransmitters that determine appetite, as well as overall mental and physical health.

Relying on artificial light to extend our day until midnight, we fool our bodies into living in a perpetual state of summer.  Anticipating the scarce food supply and forced inactivity of winter, our bodies begin storing fat and slowing our metabolism to sustain us through the months of hibernation and hunger that never arrive.

“Our internal clocks are governed by seasonal variations in light and dark; extending daylight artificially leads to a craving for sugar, especially concentrated refined carbohydrates that in turn, cause obesity.  More seriously, lack of sleep inhibits the production of prolactic and melatonin – derailing our immune systems and causing depression, diabetes, heart disease, and cancer,” says T.S. Wiley.

According to the NIH research cited in the book, Lights Out, six hours of prolactic production in the dark is the minimum necessary to maintain immune function like T-cell and beneficial killer-cell production.  But you can’t get six hours of prolactic secretion on six hours of sleep a night; it takes at least three and a half hours of melatonin secretion before your body even makes prolactin.  That is 9.5 hours of needed sleep every night, for proper immune function.

The connection is clear.  Scale back on arduous gym sessions and endless calorie counting.  There is a much more relaxing way to slim down – grabbing some extra shut-eye.  Say goodnight to getting fat.

Here are some tips on helping you sleep from Dr. Frank Lipman:

  1. By 10 pm, stop sitting in front of your computer or TV screen and switch off all other electronic devices. They are too stimulating to the brain and inhibit the release of sleep neurotransmitters.
  2. Dim the lights an hour or more before going to bed; take a warm bath; listen to calming music or soothing sounds. Remove any distractions (mental and physical) that will prevent you from sleeping.
  3. Going to bed around the same time everyday even on weekends, is the most important thing you can do to establish good sleep habits.
  4. Our bodies need complete darkness for production of the important sleep hormone, melatonin. If your bedroom is not pitch dark when you go to sleep, it interferes with this key process and disrupts your circadian rhythms.

Interested in learning more about the issues surrounding weight loss, diabetes, aging and sleep?  Listen in to T.S. Wiley’s radio show “Livin’ La Vida LowCarb” and hear from real experts in all fields of science and medicine debate the top medical news alerts.  http://ow.ly/cHJQQ

Lights Out: Sleep, Sugar and Survival is available in hard cover, as well as for your Kindle.

Visit Amazon.com to order your copy! http://ow.ly/cIoKH


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