Women's Health and Issues

Doulas and the Childbirth Process

August 22, 2011

Marin Mommies is excited to present another guest article by a Marin County professional: aromatherapist, bodytherapist, birth doula, and childbirth educator Samantha Stormer of Sacred Beginnings Birth Services, based in Corte Madera. Ever wondered what exactly a doula does, and whether you need one? Samantha explains what a doula is and the role a doula plays in the childbirth process.

What Is a Doula?

Doula is the Greek term for servant. Throughout thousands of years, women have always been in service of other women to assist during the birth process, providing an intuitive and practical knowledge of just what is needed at the right time.

A birth doula (birth assistant) is a woman in service to the laboring mother and father to provide physical, emotional, and hands-on support from early labor until the baby is born. She delivers continuity of care from home to hospital, easing the transition from home to the hospital environment. Traditionally, in years

Stuck At A Weight Loss Plateau? Bust Through It!

June 7, 2011

Personal training sessionMarin Mommies is pleased to present another guest article by Marin County fitness expert John Spongberg.

When you started your weight loss routine, you knew it would be a process. After all, you didn’t gain the weight overnight. You couldn’t have expected it to come off that fast. Unfortunately, you’ve hit a bump in the road and your motivation level is starting to wane.

How can you get past a weight loss plateau to see the results you really want? First off, don’t give up! You can bust through your obstacle to see the rewards on the other side. The key is in learning how to keep your motivation high through your plateau and continuing to work in the right direction.

Goal Setting Tips For Marin Moms

May 6, 2011

Marin Mommies presents a guest article by health and fitness expert John Spongberg, founder of Personal Training in Marin, and creator of the Mother's Day Gift Experience, a personalized fitness and nutrition program for busy moms.

If you’ve watched Oprah or seen Bob Greene or Dr. Oz lately on television then you already know it’s not just about reducing calories or aimlessly exercising.... It’s about making lifestyle changes through nutrition and effective exercise personalized to your individual needs and preferences!

Focus On Goal Setting

If you want to lose weight, setting goals is going to help you immensely. Goals can keep you on track and they can motivate you when the going gets tough. Mini-goals can be especially helpful if you set them and reward yourself wisely each time a milestone is attained. You will need to seriously look at your motivation and commitment towards your goals. That’s where a professional can help. That way, you can stay focused even through the difficult times.

Yoga on the Bay at Richardson Bay

April 5, 2011

Looking for a yoga class? Yoga on the Bay, a six-week series has started on Wednesdays at 12:45 pm at the Lyford House Terrace in Tiburon. Instructor Diana Estey will guide a Yin Yoga class for all levels that stretches tight bodies and quiets busy minds, all in an amazing setting overlooking San Francisco Bay.

The cost for the series is $96. Email: ggrani@audubon.org to reserve your spot. For more information on this and other Richardson Bay Audubon programs, visit www.tiburonaudubon.org

Parenthood Dreams Through Vitrification

March 15, 2011

new baby and momThis guest article is from our friends at Laurel Fetility Clinic, a local fertility practice with offices in Mill Valley, San Francisco, and Modesto. Visit them online at www.laurelfertility.com.

Vitrification is the latest method for freezing unfertilized eggs to preserve fertility options for hopeful mothers. “This cutting edge practice is still fairly new and not many programs are doing it,” commented Laurel Fertility Care Lab Director Dr. Marlane Angle, PhD. “However, survival rates using vitrification are much higher for eggs and embryos when compared to previous freezing methods like slow cooling.”

Why Choose Vitrification?

“It's the technology of the future,” commented Dr. Angle. “People, especially women, need this and are asking for it. We were originally used fertility preservation for women undergoing cancer treatment. These women often experience fertility challenges following radiation or chemotherapy. If these women preserve their fertility before cancer treatment, they have a much better chance of conception down the road.”

Hidden Hypothyroidism: How Undiagnosed Thyroid Disorders Can Affect Your Health

March 9, 2011

Mom and son runningThis guest article is by Lisa Brent, ND, LAc. Lisa is a naturopathic doctor specializing in women’s health and integrative gynecology at the Owning Pink Center in Mill Valley, CA.

It is not uncommon for a patient to come in to my office with all of the signs and symptoms of low thyroid function and to tell me that her recent blood tests had “come back normal”. While there are many medical explanations for some of the most common indications of a thyroid disorder—weight gain, hair loss, fatigue, etc.--it is also possible that the gland is not working optimally even without laboratory evidence.

The Problem
As many as 27 million Americans may have some type of thyroid disorder. Of that number, approximately half remain undiagnosed. The consequences of untreated thyroid dysfunction can be serious. For example, a recent study showed that individuals with “subclinical” hypothyroidism (low thyroid function that does not show up on lab tests) demonstrated a 41% increase in relative mortality from all causes versus people with normal thyroid function.

Marin Alternative Mothers Group

February 22, 2011

Are you passionate about natural childbirth or homebirth, and are you looking for like-minded families for support, information, and friendship? The Marin Alternative Mothers Group (MAMG) may be for you. The MAMG is a group of women devoted to alternative birth choices and proud of their educated and informed decisions to birth drug free in a safe and supported environment.

MAMG was founded by Marin mom Ozzie Ozkay-Villa—whose son was born at home in 2010—after she wasn't able to find exactly what she was looking for through existing local mother's groups. She and her fellow MAMG moms have found that surrounding themselves with like-minded women who support their decisions about childbirth and parenting gives them a strong sense of empowerment and community. "When we get a new pregnant mom in MAMG I feel over-joyed because I know she will find the support that I didn't have," says Ozkay-Villa. "Every once in a while I have a mom email me and say something like "I found my people" and it just makes my day."

The MAMG meets every other Friday at 11 am, and holds family days one Sunday a month. The next Friday meet is on March 4th. The group is rapidly growing, so more activities are planned. Membership dues are $35 a year or $60 for two years. For more information on the MAMG, visit www.marinalternativemothersgroup.com.

Must Know: How Health Care Reform Will Affect Your Family

January 11, 2011

This guest article is by Autumn Robertson, Co-Founder of Golden Gate Health Insurance, a local health insurance brokerage serving Marin, San Francisco, and the East Bay.

Health care reform is here, but how will it affect you and your family?

With all the changes taking place in the health care system these days, it can be difficult making sense of what it means for families. While businesses may not be cheering for the reforms, there are many benefits families will be able to take advantage of, such as insurance companies putting more money toward wellness benefits and preventative care. Wherever you and your family fit into the reforms, these times offer an opportunity to re-evaluate your current coverage and potentially, save money.

Although changes will take place between now and 2014, some will immediately affect your family:

Pre-Existing Health Conditions
Reforms will prohibit insurance companies from excluding children with pre-existing health conditions. This means your insurance company can’t drop you if a child gets sick or deny your family if one of your dependents is deemed “high-risk.”

Dr. Bob Sears, MD, Presents: Immune and Sinus Health for Children and Adults at Pharmaca-Novato

January 3, 2011

Pharmaca's Healthy Living Lecture Series in Novato presents the well-known pediatrician and author Dr. Bob Sears, MD, FAAP, on Tuesday, January 18 at 7 pm. The topic is: Immune and Sinus Health for Children and Adults.

You may be familiar with many of the books Dr. Sears has written or co-authored, including The Healthiest Kid in the Neighborhood, Father’s First Steps, The Baby Book, The Premature Baby Book and The Baby Sleep Book. Dr. Sears received his medical degree in 1995 from Georgetown University and completed his pediatric training at Childrens Hospital Los Angeles in 1998. Don’t miss this unique opportunity to meet “Dr. Bob,” as his little patients call him. This is a free event. Attendees will also receive a coupon for $10 off a $30 purchase the night of the event.

Seating is limited, so advance reservations are required by calling (415) 892-3700. Pharmaca-Novato is located at 7514 Redwood Blvd. in Novato (next to Trader Joes).

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