Raising the bar for women’s health: The FemTech Revolution
The FemTech Revolution is New Zealand’s first and only FemTech marketplace. It’s a marketplace and a forum to discuss and raise the bar for women’s health. The FemTech Revolution was founded, in part, out of concerns for the bias in sex-specific health but also for a desire to find novel ways to improve women’s health and everyday lives. Our mission is to bring amazing FemTech innovations to the women of New Zealand. We want to nurture increased discussions in the area of women’s health and make a difference by empowering women to make technology work for them.
I founded The FemTech Revolution, inspired by my need and knowledge, with the hope of helping other women out there also in need. I am a bioengineering researcher and mother of three, all born within 20 months of each other! I’ve researched in the field of medical technologies for over 15 years and have seen first-hand the benefits of health innovations and technologies in this role. On the other side of the coin, in my role as a full-time working Mum to three full-on children, I’m always searching for new ways to save my body and my sanity.
It’s no secret that men and women are different. It’s why we have a whole genre of jokes dedicated to ‘Men are from Mars; women are from Venus’. Mentally, physically, and biologically, men and women are different. But this hasn’t been reflected well in the field of medicine (you can read more about that here). Women’s health has often been considered a ‘niche’ area even though about 50% of the world’s population is female. It’s time that women’s health – and not just reproductive health, but the health of a woman as a whole – receives the attention it deserves. FemTech is one solution that is standing up to these problems and raising the bar for women’s health.
What is FemTech?
FemTech (or female technology) is technology tailored towards the needs of women. FemTech is quite a new term and includes software/apps, devices and products for women’s health and wellness, including things related to reproductive health, motherhood, and general health and wellbeing. It’s also about getting the conversation going for us to bring women’s health into line with that of all health. See some examples of FemTech products below.
How is FemTech improving women’s health?
The FemTech industry has skyrocketed recently, due to a rise of people taking their health into their own hands. The data and insights provided by technology can help people understand their bodies on a day-to-day basis. Meaning they are able to make more informed choices about their health. Some examples include period/fertility apps, fertility devices, pelvic floor training devices, wellness trackers and even sexual wellness products.
My favourite for staying well is the Bellabeat Wellness trackers. Bellabeat creates beautiful yet functional products that help women track, manage, and improve their overall health and well-being. They promote a healthier lifestyle by bringing intuitive wellness tools to women — encouraging them to take care of their health through educational content and community support. The Bellabeat Leaf and app collect information on your activity, sleep, hydration, mindfulness, stress sensitivity and your menstrual cycle and predict a measure of your stress sensitivity based on your measured data combined. From this, you can get insights into which lifestyle habits create higher stress levels in your life and learn to manage them with help from guided breathing and meditation exercises. I’ve learnt from my experiences here and can give you my top five tips for being ‘well’ below.
Five tips for staying ‘well’ in busy times and during lockdowns!
The Global Wellness Institute defines Wellness as “the active pursuit of activities, choices and lifestyles that lead to a state of holistic health”. It is incorporating healthy habits into our daily life to improve our physical and mental health. So, try to think about my top five tips below. By making small improvements to these things, we can improve our overall Wellness and reduce stress.
Get moving! Thanks to amazing apps/online videos, you can get simple exercise ideas right from your phone. I love the workouts from Bodyfit by Amy. She even has 10-minute workouts that you can feel! If you’re able to get outside for even 5-10 minutes, the easiest form of exercise is just going for a walk.
Make sure you get enough sleep. Aim for 7-9 hours overnight. A cat nap during the day can also be useful for an extra boost, but keep it short (~25 minutes).
Stay hydrated. Once your body starts to dehydrate you might feel your energy level go down. Your mood might start fluctuating. Concentration levels might start dropping. And you might feel the onset of one of those dreadful headaches. According to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicinethe ‘right’ amount of water to drink (for an average person) is 2.7 liters for women and 3.7 liters for men. This is total water – from all drinks and foods. Around 20% of our daily water intake comes from food so that leaves the rest to drink. And unfortunately, alcohol and coffee don’t count.
Take a breath. Deep breathing is one of the most effective ways to relieve stress, calm yourself, and get re-centered. It’s super easy too. Whether you’re stopped at a traffic light, stuck on hold on the phone, or waiting in line at the supermarket, take a few seconds to focus on your breathing. You can take this a bit further and do a short meditation – even 5 minutes a day is beneficial. The easiest way to meditate is to simply focus on your breathing – inhale through your nose, exhale through your mouth. Then, take it a step further by trying to keep your mind blank.
- Eat well. Try to eat healthy meals and have healthy snacks on hand. There are three main categories of foods – protein, carbohydrates, and fat. Although fats and carbs often get a bad rap as being unhealthy, and popular diets like Keto promote a high-protein diet, it’s important to include a balanced ratio of all three of these food types in your diet. It can be difficult to find the time to make and eat healthy meals every day (and heard to start away from the unhealthy snacks especially during lockdowns!), but try to plan ahead, this gives a better chance of staying on track.
To find out more about The FemTech Revolution and our journey towards making women’s lives easier, more enjoyable and full of health on our website here - https://thefemtechrevolution.com - like us on Facebook, follow us on Instagram or even better, sign up to our newsletter! (Oh and this beautiful lady is offering 10% off her store with the code 'WELLNESS10') x