Bikini Medicine: The Brain Game  

“Bikini Medicine” is the misconception that women are similar to men in all ways biologically, except for those body parts that fit under a bikini. In other words, women were assumed to be men, but with breasts and uteri. Women have long been understudied in science and medicine, and this has led to non-existent funding for medical studies which would be tailored towards women. Specifically, the female brain has received astonishingly little attention and was rarely studied by medical researchers, resulting in a wealth of misinformation about women’s health.

Women’s brains are significantly different from men’s brains. For example, in men, the path to Alzheimer’s disease is primarily vascular, whereas in women, it’s more metabolic and hormonal. These differences are significant in understanding the processes which can lead to Alzheimer’s disease. Male and female brains age differently, and hormones affect the brain in different ways. Estrogen, the female hormone, is neuro-protective, boosts the brain’s energy levels, which supports the immune systems and also keeps the brain young. Testosterone does the same in men; however, estrogen and testosterone have different life spans: testosterone declines gradually, while estrogen declines quickly. The estrogen deficit in women can potentially trigger episodes of mood changes or increase the risk of Alzheimer’s disease.

The focus is often on hormone deficiency and how those deficiencies impact women’s menopausal symptoms, such as hot flashes, weight gain, bone density, etc. While those issues are critical in the quality of life and protection of bone density, brain health should also be considered equally important.

Women are twice as likely to develop Alzheimer’s disease. In fact, 2 out of every 3 Alzheimer’s patients are women and twice as likely to end their lives suffering from Alzheimer’s disease, even when their longer lifespans and family history are taken into account. In addition, women in their 60s are twice as likely to develop Alzheimer’s over the rest of their lives as they are to develop breast cancer; however, breast cancer has been clearly defined as a women’s health issue, while Alzheimer’s is not. 

Dr. Lisa Mosconi, the director of the Women’s Brain Initiative at Weill Cornel Medical College, has a Ph.D. in neuroscience and is the author of The XX Brain. Dr. Mosconi has extensively studied the female brain and its connection with Alzheimer’s and has found that as women age, life events can be the cause of increased stress, and stress can steal estrogen away from the brain. When experiencing stress, the body produces an overproduction of the hormone cortisol. When cortisol increases, estrogen decreases. Estrogen protects the female brain and keeps the brain from shrinking, and since estrogen begins to decline in the 4th decade, proactive brain health is the key to preventing Alzheimer’s risk. Proactively embracing a healthy lifestyle, a low-fat, high fiber diet, and the consideration of bio-identical hormone replacement can optimize brain health in women. Women need to reclaim their health. It takes discipline, perseverance, and knowledge.

Luckily, it is never too late to take care of yourself. No matter when you start, the benefits are undeniable. Let us help you live your best life.

 

To your brain health,

Dana Humes Goff, APRN, CNM, DNP

 

 

 

 

Intimacy and Symptoms of Low-T

ARE SYMPTOMS OF LOW-TESTOSTERONE AFFECTING YOUR INTIMACY?

Our hormones change as we age. Testosterone, the most critical hormone the male body produces, decreases around age 40 and continues to decline by about 1% each year.  A normal part of aging, low Testosterone (Low-T) can significantly impact the quality of life.  The good news is that our safe, simple pellet therapy can reduce these undesirable symptoms.  

SYMPTOMS OF LOW-T:

  • Decreased sex drive, erectile dysfunction
  • Sleep disorders such as insomnia
  • Loss of strength and muscle mass
  • Increased body fat
  • Decreased bone density
  • Low energy levels, fatigue
  • Depression/anxiety
  • Loss of self-confidence, loss of vitality
  • Trouble focusing, memory issues
  • Irritability/moodiness
  • Loss of facial or body hair

If you experience any of these undesirable symptoms, it’s easy to get your hormone levels checked. Get back in the game with our simple, proven bioidentical pellet therapy.

TO SCHEDULE A CONSULTATION OR TELEHEALTH VIRTUAL VISIT, CALL 309-692-6838 or click below

Get Back in the Game with T by Couri

Energy.  Focus.  Libido.  It is time you  get back in the game?

Our hormones change as we age. Testosterone, the most critical hormone the male body produces, decreases around age 40 and continues to decline by about 1% each year.  A normal part of aging, low Testosterone (Low-T) can significantly impact the quality of life.  The good news is that our safe, simple pellet therapy can reduce these undesirable symptoms.  

SYMPTOMS OF LOW-T:

  • Decreased sex drive, erectile dysfunction
  • Sleep disorders such as insomnia
  • Loss of strength and muscle mass
  • Increased body fat
  • Decreased bone density
  • Low energy levels, fatigue
  • Depression/anxiety
  • Loss of self-confidence, loss of vitality
  • Trouble focusing, memory issues
  • Irritability/moodiness
  • Loss of facial or body hair

If you experience any of these undesirable symptoms, it’s easy to get your hormone levels checked. Get back in the game with our simple, proven bioidentical pellet therapy.

TO SCHEDULE A CONSULTATION OR TELEHEALTH VIRTUAL VISIT, CALL 309-692-6838 or click below

Meet Lauren Ponder, MSN, APN, FNP-C

The Couri Center team proudly welcomes Lauren Ponder, MSN, APN, FNP-C to our practice. We hope you enjoy learning more about her in the following interview:  

 

What is one word you would use to describe yourself? Compassionate

What are you most proud of?  The family my husband and I have created. How close I am with my parents and siblings. 

How do you recharge? Quality family time. Taking breaks from social media and the internet. Working out and going out with family and friends. 

Do you like to cook? I do like to cook, but my husband is the main cook in our house. 

What is a favorite recipe? My mom’s cheesy potatoes.

Which sports teams do you root for? St. Louis Cardinals and Blues. Green Bay Packers.

If you were to tell one person “Thank You” for helping me become the person I am today, who would it be, and what did they do? Definitely my mom. She instilled the importance of hard work and perseverance to achieve anything I set my mind to. She and my dad ensured my sisters and I knew the importance of family values and putting God and our faith at the center of our lives. 

When are you the happiest? When I am with my family, unplugged from the daily grind.

If you really knew me, you’d know…. I genuinely care about others and want to help people any way I can.

What would you most regret not having done by the end of your life? Not taking proper care of myself. Self-care is so essential in order to give the most of yourself to others.

What characteristic do you most admire in others? Loyalty

What are you most passionate about? My family, friends, and my work. I am so lucky to have a profession in which getting to know people and helping them on their journey is the focus of what we do. 

What one memory do you most treasure? The birth of my son.

What would a “perfect” day look like for you? Waking up with family, exercising, getting outside, spending quality time with family and friends, and laughing a lot.

Why did you choose to be an Advanced Nurse Practitioner? My younger sister was very sick, growing up. I saw firsthand how much of an impact the nurses had on both my sister and my parents. I wanted to be able to help people in their times of need and knew that nursing was the best choice for me. I went on to be a nurse practitioner because I wanted more autonomy with those that I served. It has really allowed me to capitalize on my passion for serving others while allowing me to have more independence while doing so. 

If you could volunteer your time, what would you do? Help children of high-risk families and schools.

Tell us about your favorite season?  Summer. I love hot summer days/nights and the carefree feeling that comes specifically with this season. I love seeing kids out riding their bikes, swimming, and having fun. 

What type of music do you enjoy? Honestly, all different types. I like different genres depending on what I am doing; driving, working out, relaxing, with friends, etc.

What is your least favorite exercise? Box Jumps! What’s your go-to exercise? My incline trainer. Good combo of cardio and resistance training. 

Tell us some of your favorite books? The Secret. Unbroken. Same Kind of Different as Me. 

What motivates you? My family. My passion for helping others. The idea of who I want myself to be in the future for my kids and one-day, grandkids.

We have so many wonderful patients here at the Couri Center. What would you most like to share with them? I genuinely want to help you meet whatever health or life goals you have. I am very invested in my patients; their lows are my lows, and their highs are my highs.

I look forward to serving you and going on this journey together. 

 

Lauren Ponder, MSN, APN, FNP-C