16 health conditions that affect more women than men


young woman at gynecologist office

The female body can do some incredible things, like grow brand-new humans and break world records for longevity.

But being female also means you’re more prone to certain diseases.

Of course, not everyone’s body fits neatly into a strict male-female binary. But, generally speaking, these 16 conditions affect more women than men.

1. Anxiety

Worry is a normal part of being human. But with anxiety disorders, worry can become extreme and start to interfere with daily life.

Women are twice as likely as men to be diagnosed with an anxiety disorder in their lifetime, according to the US Department of Health and Humans Services Office on Women’s Health (OWH).

These disorders are real medical problems, and there are treatments that can help. This guide from the Anxiety and Depression Association of America can help you find a therapy that works for you.

2. Depression

Just as with anxiety, women are twice as likely as men to be diagnosed with depression, according to the OWH.

There’s no one cause of depression, but fluctuating female hormone levels during the menstrual cycle, pregnancy, the postpartum period, and menopause may increase a woman’s depression risk. Stress, family history, pain, and medical problems can also factor in.

And, just as with anxiety, depression is treatable.

3. Osteoporosis

In osteoporosis, the bones become weak and more likely to break. Age is one important risk factor — the older you are, the higher the chance you’ll get it — but so is being female. An estimated 10 million Americans have osteoporosis and 80% of them are women, according to the OWH.

The disease is more common in women for a few reasons, as the OWH notes. First, women tend to have smaller, less dense bones than men. Second, bone loss ramps up when estrogen levels drop after menopause. Third, women often live longer than men — and living longer increases osteoporosis risk.

There are a few things everyone can do to slow down bone loss: Don’t smoke or drink to excess, get exercise, and make sure you’re getting enough calcium and vitamin D. Your body uses calcium to build healthy bones, but it can’t absorb calcium without help from vitamin D, the US National Institutes of Health (NIH) explains.

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Source:: Business Insider

      

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