By: Dominique Boyette and Leticia Vaca
Welcome to the Spring quarter family! It is time to start shaking off the wares of winter and rejoice in the new growth. This is a reminder for the caretakers to take care of themselves, and women have a long tradition of being the caretaker in our families and communities.
Black, Indigenous, Women of Color suffer disproportionately from certain diseases compared to males and white counterparts.
Knowing your health risks, resources, and where to locate advocates can be life-saving. Blackhealthmatters.com is a great resource for the Black community to understand the disparities we are up against and to learn about what tools are available to help find proper care.
This Women's History Month, we want to encourage you to make your health a priority by creating a foundation of self care for your wellbeing.
Here are a few things women can start doing today!
Wondering if you’ve had enough water? Here is your sign. Get a 40oz water bottle and refill 3 times a day. Try incorporating water at every meal, during down time, so that drinking and hydrating become second nature. There are positive, immediate, and long term effects of increasing your water intake that are vital to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
Women know how to put their needs aside so easily, I often found myself in the past looking up from a full day of work only to realize I haven’t had anything to eat or drink. Just because we can push ourselves to go without, does not mean our bodies should. If you saw your flowers or plants wilting, you’d water them. Don’t forget to water your flowers...Don’t forget to hydrate yourself.
When you visit your doctor, don’t be afraid to ask all your questions. Make sure you understand and know your numbers for blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar level results. Having accurate information allows you to be informed on changes of our bodies; and the lifestyle changes you can try out to address concerning lab results.
Find moments throughout your day to intentionally breathe, collect your thoughts, and check on physical signals your body is sending you.
Make a commitment to investing in your needs. Whether it be monetarily or momentarily, block out time in your day that is solely for you. Fully enjoy and affirm yourself in this claimed space and use it to recharge.
Practice daily movement, it’s recommended 30 minutes a day. Working from home has caused a new set of concerns. Sitting at a computer for long periods of time, I have found my brain is constantly stimulated and my body is stiff at the end of the day. I have started nightly sessions of bedtime yoga to recirculate my blood flow and relax my mind and prepare me for sleep.
Start with Incremental Change:
What we do for ourselves does not have to be monumental-although you deserve it!
Sometimes incremental changes or additions to our lives can serve us more fully in the long run.
It’s taken me time, but simple as it is, I’ve learned how to keep to a skin routine morning and night. The routine now serves as my quiet time to give undivided attention to myself or listen to a podcast. Celebrate the small wins on your way to better health. Mind and body wellness is the ultimate goal.
Seek Professional Support:
And last but definitely not least, consult with a professional. Culturally there is a stigma for BIPOC women towards therapy and what it means to seek out mental health. Psychotherapy can be scary at first, but it can be extremely helpful in addressing generational issues, traumas, oppression experienced in the workplace, health related issues, and general life stressors. There has been more open discussion on the need to have emotional support available for BIPOC women, help is available.“Therapy is an investment in the person we aspire to be.” Take the time to invest in your present and future self.
Here are a few podcasts to listen to & therapy resources to check out in the meantime.
Urban Health Group LLC is a boutique-style, concierge for healthcare navigation and mental health support based in Oakland, California. We empower Black Indigenous People of Color (B.I.P.O.C.) with tools and support to effectively navigate their health and mental health needs for better wellness. We are eliminating healthcare disparities and reducing healthcare biases head on through strategic partnerships.
Our Plan Well for Care Course and One-in-One Healthcare Navigation services help Black, Indigenous, People of Color who want to make plans to provide for future needs by reducing the occurrence of being ignored by medical professionals, feeling helpless, and confused.
For more information on how you can Plan Well For Care, click here.
Happy Women’s Health Month!
Keep taking care of yourself & seeking peace.
We asked Black healers to share the self-care tips every Black woman needs to know11 Podcasts That Celebrate Black Excellencehttps://hellogiggles.com/l
35 Self-Care Tipshttps://www.dearblackwomenproject.com
Women and heart disease Health Equity
Facebook Stories: Why Black Health Mattershttps://blackhealthmatters.com/
Therapy For Black Girls