The only online publication for women in Greater Cincinnati
Health

by -

A local woman launched a business that encourages dogs to start exercising. Keep reading for all the tail-wagging details.

 

4 Paws Running Co. gives your four-legged friends a chance to get out and run.

Do you want your furry friend to get more in shape? 4 Paws Running Co. is a startup business that is currently located in Terrace Park, Ohio. Kimberly Renie, Founder and Operations Manager of 4 Paws Running Company, has a passion for dogs and running, and wanted to create a company that was a culmination of both.

“I personally have been a lifelong runner and have participated in half marathons, marathons, and various road races. We also have six teenagers and three dogs living under our roof,” she says. “With all the teenagers, dogs and working full time at our primary jobs, we noticed the dogs would be extra rambunctious if we didn’t take the time to exercise them. When they were not exercised, it was stressful on everyone.”

4 Paws was started with families as the main focus. Renie works with her husband and her three children. “Every family loves their pet, and wants the best, but doesn’t always have the time. We want to help them in the department. Easing the stress on families while doing something we love is very easy for use,” says Renie.

She always wanted to start her own running business. “Because I also love fashion, initially I wanted to own a running company apparel store,” says Renie. “Since I haven’t gotten to the point of building and running apparel part of the company, I took the name and added the 4 Paws, since our main clientele have 4 paws.” The mission of 4 Paws Running Co. is “to exercise our canine friends to help them burn energy, drain anxiety, and lead an overall happy life,” she says.

There are two different services offered at 4 Paws. Dog running involves “pacing the dogs through a vigorous one hour running adventure. Like all good pacers, we make sure the dogs get water and rest breaks when appropriate. The distance is usually two to five miles, depending on the fitness level or the dog and the current weather conditions,” says Renie. “If a new dog can’t initially run for a full hour, we break up the session with periods of walking and slowly building up their endurance. A run recap with statistics is provided to the owner after each workout.” The running rate for a dog is $25 and an additional $5 if there is more than one dog.

There is also walking. “Here we ease up the pace and take the dog on a purposeful stroll around the neighborhood for 25 minutes. During the outing they enjoy fresh air, sunshine hopefully, bathroom breaks and sniffing out their territory.” The walking rate is $15 per outing and every additional dog is $5.

There are so many benefits for dogs to exercise. For walking, it gives you a break from the monotony of the day, but dogs need more vigorous exercise to feel calm and relaxed.  

“Repressed energy can easily translate into anxiety issues and a chaotic household. Our team of distance runners and experienced dog handlers will guide dogs through a fun and challenging workout designed around his or her needs,” she says. R

unning is positive for dogs because it can be a part of a training process. “From being a long time dog owner, I have realized that the structure behind keeping a pace, shortening a leash and verbal positive reinforcement can have the major positive effects on a dog,” says Renie.

4 Paws defines success by having a happy family. “If we can bring happiness to the dogs, which in turn brings happiness to the families, then we have done our job,” she says.

To learn more about 4 Paws Running Co., follow along on Twitter and Instagram.

by -

Area parks and physicians are teaming up so you and your family can enjoy local parks while learning helpful health information straight from the source.

Walk with a Doc gives you the opportunity to explore nature while talking with a certified medical professional.

Want to take in the beauty of local parks and learn from a physician how to improve your health?

You can do just that through the local Great Parks’ “Walk With a Doc” program, which was started in 2005 by Dr. David Sabgir, a Columbus-based cardiologist. Today, there are 277 chapters in the country. “We are able to use the name and logo since Dr. Angela Fitch created a local chapter and she and the physicians she works with, runs the programs,” says Amy Roell, Outdoor Education Director for Great Parks.

The Cincinnati-based Walk With a Doc is prepared by Dr. Fitch, who usually prepares a health related topic and talks about it at the beginning of the event, and then the group goes on a one mile (or more) walk around the trails of the parks around the city of Cincinnati.

“People can ask questions, just have a conversation with Dr. Fitch, one of the other doctors that usually joins the group or each other,” she says. “It is not meant to act as a doctor appointment and she doesn’t give specific medical advice that one would get in an appointment with their doctor.”

Walk With a Doc takes place at the different Great Parks in the Cincinnati area for people of all ages. “It’s a great way for people to see the different parks or if they do not like to travel, at least one could come pretty close throughout the year,” she says. To Roell, the event is successful when people want to get out of the house to walk and enjoy the programs. “So even having a small group of five or six is a success,” she says.

Plus, she says, this event is important for the health and well being of people in the Cincinnati area. “Walking has so many positive benefits for your mind, body and soul,” she adds. “Couple that with being out in nature and it is a home run for your health!” Benefits of walking include: reduces blood pressure, lowers cholesterol, strengthens lungs, provides more oxygen to the body, reduces stress by removing lactic acid from the blood, boosts energy, etc. To find out more about the benefits of walking, check out www.walkwithadoc.org.

Some events coming up for Walk with a Doc are Walk With a Doc at Miami Whitewater Forest on March 11 at 1pm, Walk With a Naturalist at Woodland Mound on March 25 at 10am, Wetland Walk at Miami whitewater Forest on April 1 at 11am. If you want to find out more about the events, check out www.walkwithadoc.org or www.greatcincystrides.com.

by -

Learn about the local physician who, inspired by her own struggles, opened a medical spa that helps with hormone imbalances, weight loss, and a variety of skin issues.

Inspired by her own struggles with hormone imbalances, weight loss, and aging skin, Dr. Magdalena Kerschner opened her own practice her to help other with those issues.

“I was inspired by my own experience with bio identical hormone replacement and anti aging,” says Kerschner, Medical Director of Victory Wellness and Medspa, a practice which initially focused on weight loss and hormone replacement, but recently expanded with the addition and rebranding as a medical spa. “I am excited to bring the latest and newest anti aging laser and radio frequency technology for skin care, such as Halo, BBL, Thermiva, Pellave, etc.”

The procedures offered at Victory are Halo, which is the latest combination of ablative and nonablative laser technology for the “Hollywood glow,” BBL, which is a photo facial for age spots and other discolorations, and Thermiva, which is for vaginal rejuvenation. “Helps to enhance sexual pleasure, orgasm, and external appearance of labia’s, she says. “Helps to decrease symptoms of leaky bladder. No down time.”

Other procedures include Pelleve, which is radio frequency skin tightening, Hydro facials for anti aging and acne treatments, and Botox and Fillers for facial and hand rejuvenation “Bio identical hormone replacement for both men and women, weight loss program,” says Kerschner.

“My extensive experience as a physician and a woman helps me to understand people’s needs and how to care for them. I have a personal passion for personal growth and passion for beauty. I believe we should try to be the best that we can be at any point of our lives,” she says. “I believe in preventative medicine as opposed to conventional pharmaceutical medicine. Patient interaction. I am very gratified when patients become happy and lead fulfilling lives once again.”

Victory Wellness and Medspa wants people to leave their business feeling better about themselves. “We are unique because we care for the external as well as internal well being of people,” says Kerschner. There is a need for Victory in Cincinnati. “As we age, our needs are not addressed properly by conventional medicine. In spite of the alarming obesity epidemic, patients are not getting help from regular doctors,” she says.

Positive responses are what makes Kerschner’s job worthwhile. A memorable moment for her was “a patient who told me that for the first time she feels alive and enjoys living to the fullest,” she says. “I define success as a grateful smile on my patient’s face.”

Victory Wellness and Medspa is located at 9600 Montgomery Road in Cincinnati. Learn more at www.victorywelness.com.

by -

Learn about a new, locally-launched, low-calorie sports drink that hydrates, fights fatigue and sweetens the deal with only plant-based sweeteners.

 

Thirty Drink uses plant-based sweeteners to give you a healthier alternative to other recovery drinks.

Are you active and looking for a new drink to give you energy? Thirty is a recovery drink that’s “sweetened with plant-based sweeteners, such as stevia, monk fruit, and real sugar, offering you a healthier alternative,” says Patrick McGinnis, CEO and Founder of Thirty. “All of these essential vitamins and natural flavors are just thirty calories.”

Thirty has a four-person team located in Downtown Cincinnati. Thirty’s employees want the drink to be the best tasting low-calorie sports drink in the market. “It’s important for us to raise awareness of calories and bad products for consumers,” McGinnis says. “Our mission is to help grow the healthy drink category and get this into every consumers’ hands to let them know the healthy option tastes just as good.”

The company started because McGinnis was tired of drinking products after a workout that had too many calories. “When you walk into your every day grocery store or convenience store, the options seemed limited,” he says. “There is no disagreement that water is the King. But instead of drinking a sports drink punched with 80-160 calories, I wanted to create something just as great tasting with minimal calories.”

Thirty is called an isotonic drink. An isotonic drink normally has 4g to 8g of sugar (carbohydrates) per 100mL and has the same osmotic pressure as bodily fluids. “An isotonic drink is taken up by the body about as quickly as water. They are intended to quench thirst and provide energy to the body. Ideal for endurance sports.” Thirty has triple the electrolytes, compared to your average sports drink, natural flavors, monk fruit juice that helps fight fatigue, great tasting liquid and 1/3 less sugar than typical sports drinks.

The sports drink industry is a growing field, and McGinnis wanted to make his mark. “I have been on the adult beverage side of things, selling products that are lower calorie or even gluten free products,” says McGinnis. “I wanted to create a product I knew people would use daily. I want it to be the healthiest product you can buy at your everyday convenience store or local market store.”

Thirty defines success according to the customers and their stories. McGinnis loves to hear the stories of how the customers enjoyed the taste and the benefits of the product on a daily basis.  “Our success comes from the people drinking our product and seeing results that help them live a healthier lifestyle.”

McGinnis’s favorite part of working for Thirty is figuring out what he can do better for his customers. “I love having these brainstorming sessions with the team and myself. Knowing there is always room for improvements is what drives me,” he says. “Our growth potential is such a high ceiling, I don’t want to limit that growth. I look forward to each challenge this company takes on daily.”

If you want to follow what Thirty is doing, check out their website or follow them on Facebook.

by -

Read on to learn about a farm in Mount Healthy that helps nourish you physically, emotionally and spiritually.

Tikkun Farm is a non-profit farm that creates spaces and experiences of healing.

Do you want to experience spiritual healing in your life? Tikkun Farm may be just what you need.

Tikkun Farm is a 3.5 acre non-profit farm located on a quiet, dead-end street in the Mount Healthy neighborhood of Cincinnati. “It uses its lands and buildings to create spaces and experiences of healing, restoration and repair,” says Mary Laymon, Executive Director of Tikkun Farm. “We have a long term vision to offer integrated healing experiences for people recovering from trauma.”

Tikkun is a Hebrew word that Laymon’s son heard at a friend’s Bar Mitzvah. “The young Jewish boy celebrating this milestone invited guests to support him in his work of ‘Tikkun Olam,’ which he told us is meant ‘to repair the world,’” she says. “This is how I learned of the Jewish belief that all Jews should commit themselves to partnering with God in the ongoing ‘repair of the world.’”

Spirituality is at the center of all wholeness and healing. “Healing isn’t complete until we know in the very core of our being that we are the beloved… that no matter what we’ve done, or what has been done to us, we are loved,” she says.

Tikkun Farm has been an idea growing in Laymon’s heart for 20 years. For a long time she has “nurtured a vision for creating a space of hospitality and healing. When my husband and I bought this farm in 2010, we imagined it could be the setting for this vision,” says Laymon. “We moved to the farm in 2013 and began renovating and repairing the buildings. When we applied for non-profit status for the farm in 2015, I became the Executive Director.”

The inspiration behind starting Tikkun Farm was from the sexual abuse that she went through when she was a child. “In 40+ years, I have been healing from this trauma. I have learned how many aspects of a person’s life are comprised by traumatic events and how varied and extensive the treatments need to be to restore a person to wholeness,” she says. “Trauma impacts biological, emotional, spiritual and social systems. Our traditional medical model does not offer an integrated healing approach for this multifaceted wound.”

In Laymon’s role as a pastor and spiritual director, I have worked with people who have gone through traumatic events. “I witness the greatest healing with people who have access to many healing modalities: talk therapy, yoga, Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing, massage and acupuncture, healing touch, reiki, spiritual direction, Body Talk, etc. I want to offer those seeking wholeness, access to a team of practitioners who work together to help a person recover.”

Tikkun Farm defines success by people being able to trust the employees of the business with their struggles, wounds, hearts, and allow us to accompany them on their healing journey. “Those with resources trust us to be good stewards of their support offered through their time, their gifts and their financial support.”

The farm offers a variety of events and services that will help you to pursue healing. Some of these events include: A New Year’s retreat that she leads every year, seasonal Quiet Days and Prayer retreats during Lent, Advent, Easter, and about themes related to the Sabbath, Healing and All Hallow’s Eve; coaching groups that concentrate on Family Systems Theory, book studies, etc.

Tikkun Farm is located at 7941 Elizabeth Street Cincinnati, OH 45231. To learn more, visit http://www.tikkunfarm.com, or follow Tikkun Farm on Facebook.

by -

Learn about some of the best gifts you can give your significant other (and yourself) this Valentine’s Day to truly show the love.

 

Check out the best gift ideas for a mom-to-be this Valentine’s Day.

The countdown is upon us, Cincinnati ladies. Valentine’s Day is almost here, and most of you are just hoping to survive the next 24 hours, never mind thinking about what to get your significant other for V-Day. HELLO, pregnancy brain, who can even remember what that thing was you were searching for on Amazon before you wandered into the kitchen, struck by errant cravings that needed to be satisfied immediately? #icecream #chocolate

Where were we? Oh yes, Valentine’s Day. Depending on how far along you are on your journey to Becoming Mom, the echoes of the past filled with chic and racy lingerie and wine-fueled dinners are on hold. While our hearts melted for Mandy Moore on ‘This is Us’ as she danced around with her bra on the outside of her t-shirt for Jack’s birthday, beautiful belly on full display while pregnant with triplets, I think we can all agree we need some alternative options here, just in case!

Gift One:

Stress-Free and Happy – A Couples Massage for the Mommy and Daddy to Be

Stress-free is sexy. Seriously, ask ANYONE. Hands down one of the best gifts you can give your partner: An experience to connect, relax, and be together in dim light, snuggled under soft blankets, with soft music floating all around out. Not to mention the soothing effect hot stones can have on your aching limbs, tired back, and sore feet.

While you’re presenting this gift of togetherness to your husband, you still must make sure that you’re receiving a massage in a safe environment with staff trained in pregnancy massage. A Certified Prenatal Massage Therapist can address many of the issues you may face during your pregnancy, including sciatic nerve pain, round ligament pain, leg cramping, constipation, gas, heartburn, headaches, and stress. Becoming Mom Spa + Ultrasound is a Pregnancy spa, ultrasound imaging center, and maternity boutique that specializes in the journey to motherhood located in the Deerfield Town Center in Mason, Ohio.

They have licensed and certified staff in prenatal massage therapy accredited by the NCBTMB. (National Certification Board for Therapeutic Massage and Body Work.)

Becoming Mom has created a special package for couples this Valentine’s Day. It Includes a side-by-side 50-minute Pregnancy Massage for you and a Swedish Massage for him in adjoining rooms. For additional luxury, you can add on an enhancer like hot stones or a moisturizing Eco-Fin hand and foot treatment, or upgrade to 80-minute massages.

Another benefit to going to a pregnancy spa like Becoming Mom Spa + Ultrasound are the specialized massage techniques and safety protocols they’ve developed for mom and baby. The treatment rooms contain customizable reclining tables or pregnancy support cushions for safe side positioning, and every product is pregnancy-safe and natural.

Enough about you, this is still a gift for your significant other after all *cough*. His Swedish massage will occur in the same room, can be customized to address any pain points and issues that he might be having and the treatment table can be adjusted to any reclining position desired. Best of all he will get to experience a relaxing and stress-free massage gazing at your beautiful face, shoulders, and a sheet draped baby bump in dim lighting. It doesn’t get any better than that!

Gift Two:

Book a Date to Fall in Love: Time to Meet Your Baby

You might be thinking that you’ve already given him the best Valentine’s Gift ever. You’re growing a human inside of you! What can top that? Well, what if you could book a date night he will never forget and surprise him (and you! ) by meeting your baby for the first time or finding out if the bun in the oven is a boy or a girl?

With an elective ultrasound at Becoming Mom Spa + Ultrasound, you both can share in the experience of “seeing” your baby for the first time in the comfort of a spa environment with an ultrasound performed by a medical sonographer.

Becoming Mom is the only Cincinnati area elective ultrasound center with the latest in 2D, 3D and HD technologies – a package for every stage of your pregnancy.  If gender determination is your ideal date night and you’re at least 16 weeks, the 2D Just Can’t Wait Package is a good fit. If you’re interested in a 3D or HD Package, you should be at least 23 weeks, and the Simply Sweet HD Ultrasound Package should be considered.

Here are some guidelines:

23-26 weeks: Baby’s facial features are starting to be defined, and you can see more of the baby at once.

27-32 weeks: This is a good time for your second 3D ultrasound or if you’re only going to come in for one session during your pregnancy. Baby’s facial features are more defined, and the baby still has room to move around. However, because the baby is getting larger, you won’t see quite as much of him/her at once as you would earlier.

33-36 weeks: The best time for beautiful facial shots IF baby “cooperates.” Please be aware that increased crowding in the womb does make it more challenging to get pictures.

What to Do – How Do You Decide?

As we have established, pregnancy brain is the real deal!  Decisions are hard and time is short. My suggestion is to go with the package YOU want most, because Happy Wife = Happy Life! But if you can’t decide, the Enjoy the Journey. package combines everything we chatted about – and saves you money! And i you combine that package with the Gift Certificate Special that Becoming Mom is running you can receive a FREE mom-on-the-go-facial to come back for at a later date. #score You really can’t beat saving money, receiving free stuff and finding the perfect present for your husband with a gift certificate at Becoming Mom. I don’t know about you, but this is my kind of shopping trip!

Happy Valentine’s Day Mamas! Stay relaxed, have fun, enjoy connecting with your partner and treasure the moment you get to meet your little peanut. 

The journey to becoming a mom is marathon you’ve just started. We can’t wait to share it with you! Want to buy an instant gift certificate, click here to select the special that works for you or book your appointment at 513-770-6730. 

by -

In honor of February being heart health awareness month, we learn about the scans that can test your cardiac age compared to your calendar age.

 

St. Elizabeth is traveling with its CardioVascular Mobile Health Unit.

Heart health is the responsibility of the young. After all, most of us get only one ticker.

Knowing how it’s working (circulation) and what it’s up against (plaque that can block the arteries) can help you make changes to protect your heart and keep it beating strong.

Long before symptoms appear, key medical tests can provide a baseline for you and your doctor. Four of those tests are offered on the St. Elizabeth Healthcare CardioVascular Mobile Health Unit, which visits shopping centers, churches and senior centers as part of St. Elizabeth’s community effort to promote heart health.

“For younger people that come on and have the screening, it’s kind of a nice affirmation of ‘yes, I’m doing things right’ or ‘boy, I need to straighten some things out because if I don’t, in 10-15 years, I could be at risk for cardiovascular disease,’” said Jeanie Foley, Patient and Wellness Coordinator for the mobile unit.

A quick blood test and smoking history, as well as height and weight, are used to determine your cardiac age. It estimates the risk of developing heart disease in the next 10 years. “So, if you are 42 and you have a cardiac age of 64,” explained Foley, a registered nurse, “it’s a clear wakeup call.”

People are really surprised when they see their cardiac age is 20 years older than their calendar age, said Foley. “[They often say] I really do need to stop eating fried chicken and get moving a little more.”

Also offered on the mobile unit: carotid ultrasound which can reveal plaque buildup and blockages in the arteries of the neck which supply blood to the brain.

People can be doing all the right things – exercising and watching what they eat – and still want to check things out using the tests.

“If you are 55, there are ways to improve … perhaps your cholesterol isn’t quite being managed right … your statin isn’t as effective as it should be,” said Foley. A visit with the doctor may be in order.

The specifics:

  • Four tests are offered for $100; or you may choose individual tests for $25.
  • Bring a check, cash or credit card. Insurance is not accepted.
  • A typical visit is 30 minutes with a reservation at 859-301-WELL (9355).
  • A four-hour fast is required for the blood test.

“It is a non-threatening, easy way to get some good baseline information about your health,” said Foley.

 Upcoming dates for the St. Elizabeth CardioVascular Mobile Health Unit:

TUESDAY, FEB. 14 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Women Take Heart Screening Dillard’s
2900 Town Center Blvd.
Crestview Hills

WEDNESDAY, FEB. 15 1-5 p.m.
R.C. Durr YMCA
5874 Veterans Way
Burlington

THURSDAY, FEB. 16 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Kroger
9950 Berberich Drive
Florence

FRIDAY, FEB. 17 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Remke Markets
5016 Old Taylor Mill Road
Taylor Mill

MONDAY, FEB. 20 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Town and Country Sports and Health Club
1018 Town Drive
Wilder

TUESDAY, FEB. 21 Noon to 6 p.m.
St. Elizabeth Florence
4900 Houston Road
Florence

TUESDAY, FEB. 22 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Kroger Marketplace
375 Crossroads Blvd.
Cold Spring

THURSDAY, FEB. 23 8 a.m. to noon
Five Seasons Family Sports Club
345 Thomas More Parkway
Crestview Hills

by -

Learn about a brand new space in the Hyde Park that’s about to open in the mid-March, hosting special events and fitness classes.

 

At The LB aims to bring shared fitness classes and special events to Cincinnati.

Are you looking for a place to host a fitness class or a special event? At The LB Hyde Park is a brand new space that is going to be opening in the middle of March of this year and the address is: 3825 Edwards Road, Suite 102A, Cincinnati, Ohio.

It’s located in a premium location that has a wide variety of amenities, including, parking, beautiful design, full wet bar, caterer’s kitchen, 22’ branding wall, well-appointed lobby; fresh fruit, infused water, chocolates and snacks, ability to have an open air studio or event space with storefront canopy system, premium restrooms with amenities, concierge level service, and towel service. The space is mostly going to be used for boutique fitness classes/workshops and hospitality events.

“The LB offers a space for inclusive experiential events of all kinds,” says Betsy Hodges, Vice President of Business Development for At The LB Hyde Park. To learn about using the space, you can go to the website and fill out forms about teaching a class, or hosting an event.

“We created the LB based on the undeniable trend of shared economy. Think Airbnb, Uber and WeWork,” she says. The mantra of the company is “Be Exceptional.”

“We strive for excellence. Our space and service are exceptional and that is what we want you to experience when you are with us. We are synonymous with luxurious comfort and impeccable service. We set our sights high and our standards higher. We are the detail people,” says Hodges. “We’ve developed this stunning space, but the power of the space is how it empowers others to create incredible experiences.”

There is such a need for At The LB Hyde Park. “We are the first and only concept that offers premium rental space for boutique fitness, artistic experiences, and special events. It’s not just shared economy-it’s an entirely new category in the space,” she says. “The LB offers affordable and inclusive experiential space for the hospitality, events, and boutique studio industries. There has never been a business that has empowered boutique studio instructors and the boutique studio industry in such a unique way.”   

If you want to follow what At The LB Hyde Park is doing, you can go to their website to see how you can personally utilize the space. Also, to keep up with what the company is doing you can follow them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and SnapChat. Also, if you have any questions, you can call them at (513) 275-6444.

by -

Read on as our relationship expert explains how sex can improve your life both in and out of the bedroom!

Many of the women that I work with tell me that they could live the rest of their lives without having sex. And while this may seem bleak to some, it is reality for many women who struggle with low desire (aka hypoactive sexual desire disorder). Sometimes the motivation to have sex may not come from our own personal desire. Sometimes it comes from knowing that this is something that is good for us physically, mentally and emotionally. Sort of like going to the gym, right? Much of the time it is incredibly hard to get the motivation to get to the gym or a yoga class. But after we are finished we are overflowing with endorphins and a sense of accomplishment, making it all worthwhile. Same goes for sex!  On those days when desire is low and you need an additional push to get in the mood, remember these 10 reasons that sex is oh so good for you!

1. Decreases Depression & Increases Happiness
Research shows that sex and physical contact increases happiness and life expectancy rates. Both men and women benefit from the mood enhancing benefits of an orgasm. As endorphins are released we feel better, happier and more connected with our partner (and ourselves). Research also indicates that remaining present and engaged during sexual encounters increases pleasure and feelings of happiness. This means that sex doesn’t always have to be mind-blowing. As long as we can stay aware and mindful we can reap the happy benefits.

2.  Strengthens Your Immune System
Hello sex season, goodbye flu season! A study at Wilkes University shows that sexually active people were found to have higher levels of immunoglobin- an antibody that helps the body fend off disease, colds and the flu. Researches also discovered that people who have regular sex take fewer sick days. You know what this means, right? Save those sick days and use them for a day-long romantic rendezvous with yourself or a partner.

3. Increases Libido
The more you have sex the more you want it… and the more your sex life improves. Women report that the more sex they have the better sex feels and the more they want it. Why? Having sex can increase blood flow to the genitals, improve vaginal elasticity, and increase vaginal lubrication. Three important ingredients to sexual pleasure!

4. Improves Pelvic Floor and Core Strength
Having a healthy sex life provides a serious workout for your pelvic floor. As you orgasm you will experience small contractions in the pelvic floor muscles, which, in turn, tones and strengthens those muscles. Why do we want strong pelvic floor muscles? Helps decrease chances of incontinence (bladder control issues), can make child birth easier, helps to reduce pain during sex, and improves the quality of orgasm.

5. Lowers Blood Pressure
When we have an orgasm the hormone oxytocin is released. This hormone is directly linked to blood pressure. This means that solo sex and partnered sex can directly effect your blood pressure. In another study, it was found that sexual intercourse (not masturbation) lowered systolic blood pressure (the first number on your blood pressure report). Now, sex can’t replace blood pressure meds or living a healthy lifestyle, but it can be a great addition!

6. Decreases Pain
There goes that headache excuse… Research shows that the endorphins that are released following an orgasm can ease any mild ache or pain. Endorphins actually have similar effects on the body as morphine. Single? Don’t you worry. It is just as effective to self-medicate with masturbation.

7. Decreases Stress and Anxiety
When we feel sexually aroused our pleasure and reward system in the brain is activated. This can help us feel more intimate and connected. Additionally, sex decreases the production of cortisol which triggers stress in the body.  During a study at the University of West Scotland, they even found that people who were having sex at least once every two weeks were more capable of handling stressful situations, like public speaking!

8. Improves Sleep
Sex and masturbation are a great self-soothing technique. After we have an orgasm our body releases prolactin, a hormone that causes relaxation and sleepiness. For women, the benefits are even greater because sex increases our estrogen levels. Increased estrogen levels enhance REM cycles, which help us to reach a deeper level of sleep.

9. Makes You Look Younger
Better than Botox! A study from Royal Edinburgh Hospital in Scotland had a panel of judges watch subjects through a one-way mirror and guess their ages. The participants in the study who were engaging in regular sexcapades (4 times a week) were seen as 7-12 years younger than they actually were! Why? Sex releases estrogen and testosterone, which improve the appearance of skin and hair, and help the body appear more youthful.

10. Improves Intimacy and Relationships
Skin to skin contact helps to stimulate the release of oxytocin, AKA “The Love Hormone”. (This is also why OBs and nurses in the maternity ward promote skin to skin contact for parents and babies). Oxytocin helps create feelings of love, trust, bonding and generosity. Don’t have time for even a quickie? Spend 60 seconds hugging your partner, making sure your bellies are touching. You will get a smaller, but still worthwhile, dose of oxytocin to keep you feel connected and loved.

by -

February is Heart Health Awareness month, so read on for all the exciting events and activities the American Heart Association has planned around the city!

Join a celebration of heart health at Cincy Chic’s annual Lady in Red event on February 3 at Macy’s in downtown Cincinnati.

Did you know that Cardiovascular Disease claims the lives of nearly 500,000 American women each year? The American Heart Association in Cincinnati is an organization that wants to improve people’s heart health.

“The mission of the AHA/ASA is to build healthier lives free of cardiovascular diseases and stroke,” says Lori Fovel, Director of Communications for the AHA in Cincinnati. “That single purpose drives all we do. The need for our work is beyond question.” It is Fovel’s job to tell AHA’s story and have Cincinnati connect to the mission. The goal of the AHA is to improve the cardiovascular health of people by 20 percent, and reduce deaths from cardiovascular disease and stroke by 20 percent by 2020.

Fovel has personal experience with heart problems in her family. Recently, her husband, who is an athletic and fit 54-year-old, had a heart attack. “He had a blockage in one artery, which required a stent. This event hit very close to home as you can imagine,” Fovel says. “After sharing stories of those who have been affected by cardiovascular disease for so many years, it got very personal when it happened to my own husband. Heart disease doesn’t discriminate and touches people of all ages, ethnicities and gender.”

The month of February is National Heart Month. The Christ Hospital Health Network plays a big part in the month’s festivities “Their support enables us to activate grassroots programs in our community, such as Learn and Live days at all girls’ high schools to share the message that heat health begins at an early age,” says Fovel. “They also participate in our Little Caps Big Hearts campaign that provides hand knitted baby caps to all newborns in February. Moms receive take home information about heart health.”

To raise awareness for heart health, the AHA of Cincinnati is going to host multiple events. February 3 is going to be National Wear Red Day. “It’s a call to action to raise awareness that heart disease is the number one killer of all Americans,” says Fovel. “Why go red? Heart disease and stroke cause 1 in 3 deaths among women each year, killing approximately one women every 80 seconds. Fortunately, we have the power to change that because 80 percent of cardiac and stroke events may be prevented with education and action.”

You can paint the town red as you wear your red on Feb. 3 at the 8th annual Lady in Red event at Macy’s downtown. From 6-10pm, you can enjoy a 20% store-wide* Macy’s discount, fashion show, music, swag bag, refreshments, fun photo booth and fundraising activities. All proceeds benefit the American Heart Association’s “Go Red for Women” campaign. Click here for more information and to reserve your tickets. http://2017LIR.eventbrite.com

The next day, February 4, there is a Ride Your Heart Out event. This event consists of “indoor cycling classes that are happening all over the country, hosted by our CycleNation sponsor, CycleBar. The proceeds from this event go to AHA.”

Another event happening is Kendra Scott in Liberty Center. Kendra Scott is a store, and 20 percent of the sales for the whole day will go to AHA. “Dollars raised are used to support local heart and stroke research, educational programs and advocacy efforts,” she says. At Kendra Scott, there will also be a mini event, “Sips, Sweets, and Jewels” from 5-8pm, where there is going to be door prizes, sweets, and drinks. There are also a variety of other events happening, such as the Greater Cincinnati Heart Ball, Heart Mini, and HeartChase NKY.

To keep up with what the AHA is doing, you can follow them on Facebook or check out the Heart Mini’s page; Instagram for both the Cincinnati AHA and the Heart Mini, and on Twitter.