EE:MINDSET ○ 6 min read
5 Old (and New) Myths About Women’s Health
Don’t let yourself get tricked by obsolete knowledge about women’s health and fitness. Here are 5 of the top myths about your health, the medical truth of the matter, and how you can use your new knowledge to your health advantage.
1. Strength Training Makes Women Bulky
Once upon a time, most women didn’t want big muscles. The look was considered masculine as opposed to feminine. Well, that viewpoint is certainly changing, and more and more women want defined muscles. But is strength training the answer?
The truth is that women simply don’t naturally produce enough testosterone to bulk up. This isn’t the most exciting news for women who want big muscles but it is good news for a lot of other reasons.
Number one, adding strength training to a woman’s fitness routine gives her some variety that can make working out more fun and a longer-lasting habit. Strength training also raises your metabolism, so you burn more calories and fat. Strength training increases strength, so you’ll definitely see more definition, but it’s doubtful that you’ll see bulk.
Additionally, women who increase the weight they work out with may lose more weight, making this a very efficient form of exercise. And of great concern to women, strength training increases bone density, which can ward off osteoporosis. It turns out strength training and weight lifting are great fitness approaches for women.
2. In Health Care, Women Should Be Treated Like Men
We’re all for women being treated like men, except when it comes to health care. This is one of those separate but equal areas. Women are simply different than men. There are different hormones at play that change how women’s bodies grow and develop. Women have different health concerns. And women can have different symptoms than men do for the exact same diagnosis or disease. This means that women might need to have different treatment plans for the same illnesses.
Women should get equal types of insurance coverage, they should have routine healthcare checkups, and everyone should prioritize their health care. But when it comes to the approach to diagnoses and treatments, the care that a man and a woman receive may not run parallel.
3. Women Need To Eat More Carbs Than Men
Here’s a weird one, women need to eat more carbohydrates. We’re not even sure where this one comes from, but some people believe that women need more carbs to be healthy. This is not true.
Your body’s need for carbs is based on your body weight and the total number of calories you consume and use. As is your intake of protein and fat, so if you hear a woman needs more or less of these, then that’s a myth, too.
The best approach to nutrition is based on the individual. Each person has different nutritional needs based on genetics, microbiome, lifestyle, food sensitivities, health, and goals.
4. Running Is Better Than Walking
If you want to get your workout done faster, then yes, running is better than walking. But if you believe running is better than walking when it comes to getting fit, then you’re falling for a myth.
Running and walking target the same muscle groups, and you expend roughly the same amount of energy walking as you do running, as long as you’re going the same distance. You may expend a little more energy running because you’re getting your heart rate a little higher. Running can also be more stressful on your joints, so the benefit can be a wash.
Now, if one person runs for an hour and another person walks for an hour, the person who is running will likely benefit more. The benefit is based on how far you go, not how long it takes. This means that a 3-mile walk gives you roughly the same advantage as a three-mile run.
5. You Can Target Fat Burning
You do sit-ups to lose that spare tire, the muffin top, the ring around the middle, right? Wrong. Targeted fat burning isn’t a thing. But it does help you tone and then builds muscles in that area. All targeted exercise helps the muscles you’re targeting, but it doesn’t do anything specifically for the fat in that area.
This means it’s totally possible to have strong abdominal muscles under a layer of fat. If you want to really target fat, you need to think about reducing the overall amount of fat in your body. Toning your muscles does burn more fat, so that will help. But cardio and strength training can also help you look and feel fitter and healthier.
A great way to manage your weight is with a healthy diet, but oftentimes our busy schedule can get in the way of making sure we’re eating a balanced meal. This is when it’s important to supplement your nutrition, and Essential elements’ CLA is composed of high-quality extracted Conjugated Linoleic Acid derived from the most premium, non-GMO safflower oil in the world. This naturally fat-burning formula is also known to provide support for bone, muscle, heart, and digestion health, so it makes for a great addition to any new health routine.
The Essential Element
Guess what? You’re already doing the right thing. If you’re researching health myths and myths about women’s health and fitness, you’re informing yourself, and that’s a big part of being healthy. Learning about your health and taking steps to do it right is a great start on the road to a healthier life full of better choices.
When it comes to women’s health care, make sure you feel your doctor is considering your unique needs, not just as a woman but as an individual. As far as nutrition goes, plan on eating based on your size, health goals, and specific nutritional needs.
Women’s fitness is an interesting field with a lot of misconceptions. Give yourself a break and walk when you don’t feel like running, as long as you put in the same distance. Add some strength training and heavier weights to your routine for variety and a lot of additional benefits. And don’t give up your spot strengthening.
You’re already on the path to making better choices, and there’s no reason to turn back now. You got this!