POST TIME: 5 March, 2018 00:00 00 AM
Celebrating womanhood
Looking good from within, what every woman should know ...
Raffles Health News

Celebrating womanhood

Dr Cordelia Han
Dr Watt Wing Fong

Share some tips on leading a healthier life

Start off healthy living with a healthy smile

Visit your dentist regularly to maintain a beautiful smile and healthy gums. A dental checkup once every six months is advisable.

Regular exercise keeps you trim and fit

Exercises increase our metabolism rate, keeping medical conditions like diabetes and high-blood pressure at bay. Even pregnant ladies are advised to have a short evening stroll as this not only helps prevent medical conditions but also helps them sleep better.

As we age, we lose calcium from our bones. Exercising, especially weight-bearing exercise like brisk walking, stair climbing and rock climbing helps reduces bone loss to prevent osteoporosis. Exercise keeps our cognitive function in check i.e. faster reflexes and less forgetfulness.

It increases our stamina and helps us look better and trimmer! So take time to exercise for at least 15 minutes each day.

Tailor exercise to your own individual condition and lifestyle. Start slow, and gradually increase the intensity.

You are what you eat

A healthy diet is essential for your well-being. Consider the types of food you eat, the amount that is taken each time and the way it is cooked.

Foods that are high in fibre and low in fat are ideal for those trying to lose weight. Having regular meals, at least three meals a day, also helps to fend off cravings for junk food.


Balanced meals include a variety of foods from all four food groups:  

Breads, cereals, and grains

Vegetables and fruits

Dairy products

Meats, fish, dried beans, soy, nuts, and eggs

Handling stress

With the stressful lifestyle we have in Singapore, it is important to learn how to manage stress well. Stress plays a key role in many illnesses and finding ways to reduce stress may add years to your life.

Start a hobby. Take a holiday. Discuss problems with a loved one. You will see your quality of life improve.

Lifestyle modifications

If you are a smoker, stop smoking. If you drink a lot, reduce alcohol intake. Practice safe sex by always using a condom, unless you are in a long-term monogamous relationship, to prevent HPV (the most common cause of cervical cancer) and other sexually transmitted diseases.

Peek into your health with regular general health checks

General health screening includes testing for high blood pressure,

diabetes and high cholesterol. The health screening should also determine if you are maintaining your ideal BMI. From 50 years old, you should screen for colorectal cancer.

Those who have personal or family history of medical problems, you should also screen for kidney disease, liver disease, heart disease, etc.

Women who have had a sexual encounter are advised to have a Pap smear done within the first two years of sexual activity to screen for cervical cancer.

Other tests to consider include ultrasound pelvis to screen for fibroids and cysts and mammogram for breast cancer. A mammogram should be done annually from 40 years of age, and once every two years after 50 years of age. Those who have a family history should start screening earlier. However, women who were previously on Hormone Replacement Therapy (HR1) or those abnormal mammograms should discuss with their Specialists on their individual screening intervals.

Know yourself - self breast


All females should have the habit of doing the breast self-examination within a week of their menstruation. The reason for this is that the seven to 10 days leading up to the period, there is water-retention caused by the hormonal change, thus breasts feels denser and the consistency makes any possible 'lumps' more difficult to feel.  

Drink up! 70 percent of your body is water

You should drink 100ml for every three kilograms of your body weight. Hence a person who is 50kg should drink 1.65 litres of water a day. You don't have to limit yourself to water alone. Milk, juice, herbal teas, soup, pudding, and frozen fruit bars all count as fluids, too.

In addition to the daily maintenance of our bodies, water also plays a key role in the prevention of disease. One should drink six to eight glasses of water a day, and this prevents constipation and many disease like urinary tract infection. And the best news about drinking water for health benefits? It's virtually free!

Protect yourself from the sun

Always use sunscreen and/or wear a hat when you are in the sun to protect your skin from possible skin cancer.

Optimise health

Vaccinate yourself against diseases such as Hepatitis N B. Consider human papillomavirus test (HPV) vaccination in near future. HPV is the cause of almost all cases of cervical cancer.

Premarital/ pre-conception


Premarital/pre-conception check-up allows you to screen for common problems that may directly impact your fertility and pregnancy before you start family planning.

Gynaecological screening packages

See your gynaecologist for the diagnosis and treatment of your problems.

They would be able to help you cope with the whole spectrum of women's conditions across the stages of a woman's life.  

Speak to your O&G specialist for woman health issues

An O&G specialist will be able to provide a detailed and specialised diagnosis.  Early detection and

intervention can help you stay healthy.