Showing posts from 2016

Honoring the Women you love this holiday season!

Have you considered honoring a loved one with a donation to the Howell Foundation?

Why should you?

Because we ARE different, genetically, anatomically and psychologically. So what leads many to believe that women and men should be diagnosed and treated the same when it comes to our health?

The complexity of gender differences and the greater health incidences a women faces --especially in the latter years of her life-- make women’s health research even more necessary than ever.   And by gender differences I mean going beyond the various roles ascribed to us because of our boobs and vaginas.   As best described by Carol Vlassoff, “Gender refers to the array of socially constructed roles and relationships, personality traits, attitudes, behaviors, values, relative power and influence that society ascribes to the two sexes on a differential basis.”

We do not have heart attacks the same way.

We do not face stress the same way.

We do not react to Ambien the same way.

We don’t even get dep…

Is there an intelligent way of aging? The key research findings that say there is!

The old age question remains:  why do some people live longer than others?  Do some of us REALLY want to live that long?

The 'old old' may hold all the answers to longevity.  In order to understand the spike in longevity, investigators from the University of Southern California embarked in a research project back in 1981.  It started with a 14 page questionnaire which was sent to 18,000 people.  14,000 were returned.   The average age was 73, and two out of three people alive were women. The group of researchers wanted to understand what factors affected their health.

Why is this important? More of half of the children born today are expected to live up to 103 years old! It is expected that by 2050, 3% of the population will be over 90!

The most important findings of the study and how to age intelligently back in the 80's included:

1. Of the most common recommendations to lead a healthy lifestyle,  and as to what activities influence our ability to live longer, the results…

Howell's Community Engagement Initiative focuses on weight gain prevention and meditation

The Howell's CEI holds more than "Fresh 15"... mentoring and leadership skills in a real-world setting are included! 

Dr. Hala Madanat presented the results of Howell's CEI research grant focused on preventing gain weight in women starting college -- also known as 'freshman 15' -- at our last luncheon in November.

But it wasn't only about the ways to prevent weight gain, it was also about providing and being able to train researchers in a 'real world' setting; including an in-depth understanding on leadership and mentorship for the researchers involved.  The project included 3 undergraduate students, 4 master's degree students, and one doctoral student.

The study was divided into 2 arms; one included coaching and nutrition; the other without any kind of intervention at all.  The study would take place during a 12-week period; and participants were tested to identify the markers at the beginning at at the end of the study.  No surprises, reall…

The hidden disorder that no one talks about and the health consequences it brings.

Let's face it: how many times, at the beginning of the year, we promise ourselves to clean out the clutter in our closet/garage/storage room/office? What about the stress that comes with just thinking about it? Feeling the neck pain from turning away from your new year's resolution? How can we beat this unnecessary stress?

WHERE DO I BEGIN? Am I on a path to hoarding?

A new year is about new beginnings; the opportunity to take care of the issues that might be bothering you, stressing you and flat out making you unhappy.  The Howell's Health and Happiness Series will be celebrating its first symposium on January 21, 2017.  Its line of renown speakers promise to deliver a clear understanding of clutter and hoarding, as well as the tools to take control of your habits before they take control of you, and your health:
Are women more prone to OCD than men? Are women more at risk to become hoarders than men? What effect does clutter have on your health? Are you aware of the dif…

December 2nd is Doris Howell Day!

“I realized how little women knew about themselves, when you would ask a woman where she got her medical advice for herself and her family, she would say, ‘I ask my husband,’ ” she said. “Well, how does he know about what’s best for you?”

Read the full interview here.

For her 90th, and in recognition for her relentless pursuit of women's health, the City of San Diego honored her by declaring December 2nd as Doris Howell Day. Under the premise that women's health is family health, she has dedicated over 20 years in making sure women are informed on the latest research in women's health to become their own health care advocates.

The organization, set up in conjunction with Soroptimist International of La Jolla over 20 years ago, is focused on 3 key areas.  

The scholarship program was intended to get young graduate and post-graduate researchers excited and into the field of women’s health.  So far, in 20 years, it has proven to work!  According to Dr. Thinzar Helmi Lwin, &q…

For caregivers, the top 4 must-knows for senior care.

"What do you do when the phone rings at 11:00 at night, and it is the Emergency room telling you your parent fell, broke her hip, will have surgery and be discharged within a couple of days?", asks our own Cheryl Wilson, CEO for St. Paul's and Board Member of the Howell Foundation as she kicks off her presentation at the last Howell luncheon.

According to Dr. Kawas, also a lecturer at the past Howell Luncheon, research is showing that half the children born today are expected to live past 103.  An estimated 2 million people in the US is over 90.  By 2050, it is expected that 3% of the population --around 6 million individuals-- will be part of the 'oldest old' segment of the population.

That means that the need for care giving will also exponentially grow.

Are you prepared?

Working with senior citizens gives Cheryl the opportunity to share the most important things to make sure your loved one is taken care of well into their old age.  Her suggestions?

1.- Have …

Ways you can give today towards women's health.

More often than not, women’s health IS  family health.  By donating towards the Howell Foundation’s community research and scholarship programs you help ensure that the illness in the lives of the women you love are diagnosed and treated accordingly.  Women’s health starts with research and continues with education. Here are some suggestions on how you can help this #givingTuesday.  Become a Friend of Howell.  Your small donation or full scholarship award  can help us achieve BIG things; among them, helping young scholars achieve their education goals and dreams!  Attend our events.  Spreading the word with family and friends  or participating with sponsorships  allows us to catch up while enjoying wonderful food and perhaps a great glass of wine. Donate on behalf of your organization.   Women –and men-- in your company or foundation will have the opportunity to learn more about the women in their lives.   If you’d prefer, we can visit your location and talk about the latest in women’s …

Why is Lung Cancer being diagnosed more in women than in men?

Going beyond the established guidelines of diagnosis, recent studies confirm that estrogen and an untreated infection with the Human Papiloma virus increase the risk of lung cancer in women. Yet, and just as with heart disease, there is typically no gender differences considered when diagnosing and treating women with the illness.

Here is a list of recently published findings that can shed a light on women and lung cancer:
While statistics show that lung cancer diagnosis is decreasing in men, lung cancer is increasing in young women.  Almost half of all lung cancer cases in young adults are women. Statistics show that diagnosis in older women has maintained in the past year.    Lung cancer is typically different in men (squamous cell lung cancer) than in women (adenocarcinoma)-- ; and therefore, the symptoms vary significantly.  Because of the differences in types of lung cancer and its location in the body, men will show the typical symptoms:  a persistent cough, or coughing up blood;…

Honoring one of our own during Palliative Care & Hospice month!

She is affectionately called the 'mother of hospice' in San Diego.  She has influenced hospice and palliative care nationally.  And in honor of her work, she has been named "Woman of Wonder" by the CHEERS Foundation.  She has addressed the La Jolla Women's Club on the adventures of creating a hospice organization in San Diego.  Just recently, the California State Institute of Palliative Care named in Dr. Howell's honor an award given to individuals that advance palliative care in our community and beyond.

She has done so much more!  She is the reason why Soroptimist International of La Jolla founded the Doris A. Howell Foundation for Women's Health Research.  And she is, quite frankly, a star in our organization.

She has dedicated her career to ensuring women are empowered with information on women's health to make sure we become our best health advocates. She works tirelessly on efforts to light the curiosity of young minds to pursue a career in wo…

Organization's throughout San Diego supporting smoke out day!

On my way out from my doctor's appointment today at the Naval Base Hospital, I ran across these two wonderful ladies promoting 'smoke out' day.  Bottom line is that smoking affects more than just the smoker. Here are the benefits of 'smoking out':

20 minutes without a cigarette stabilizes heart rate and blood pressure. After 24 hours, smoker's breath disappears and oxygen levels normalize. In 2-3 days, breathing is easier.  The sense of taste and smell improve. Take deep breaths and smell the roses!  In just one month, blood circulation levels improve and exercise becomes easier.  One year after quitting, one significantly reduces the risk of heart disease and stroke. The risk of heart disease is the same as a non-smoker after 10 years of kicking the habit. After 10 years, the risk of lung cancer is cut in half.After 10 years, the average of savings from quitting is estimated at 40,000.   Unfortunately, I did not catch their names. But putting things into persp…

Women and Alzheimer's: Facts and figures we ALL need to know.

It is often thought that Alzheimer's disease is indiscriminate of age, race and gender.  However, diagnosis in women goes beyond the fact that women live longer than men.  Recent research is showing that more women are diagnosed with the disease than men.

In support of Alzheimer's awareness month, a summary of the most relevant information below.


About the Doris A. Howell Foundation:

The Doris A. Howell Foundation for Women’s Health Research is committed to keeping the women we love healthy, advancing women’s health through research and educating women to be catalysts for improving family health in the community.

The organization does so by funding scholarships to students researching issues affecting women’s health; providing a forum for medical experts, scientists, doctors, and researchers to convey timely information on topics relevant to women’s health and the health of their families through i…

Sneak Peak: How the 90+ year-olds are letting us know how to age intelligently.

“There truly isn’t anything like the 90+ Study. Results obtained thus far have provided researchers across the globe with valuable information about aging.”                                                                    ~ Dr. Claudia Kawas
                                                                      UCI News

It is no secret that life expectancy has increased almost by 30 years. But what determines if anyone makes it past 90?  Do we event want to? What resources are available to us to continue being independent, and most of all healthy?   Take a sneak peak on Dr. Kawa's research as seen on her interview with 60 minutes.  


About the Doris A. Howell Foundation:

The Doris A. Howell Foundation for Women’s Health Research is committed to keeping the women we love healthy, advancing women’s health through research and educating women to be catalysts for improving family health in the community.


Not because we are old, but because we will eventually get there! Let's make our journey easier!

Have you ever wondered what steps we can take to prepare ourselves for healthy aging? Do we even know where to start? What resources are available to us to ensure a happy aging process? What do we need to consider if we are taking care of a family member?

The Howell Foundation will celebrate its last luncheon of the year on November 11 with a topic that concerns us all: 'Intelligent Aging".  We have the honor of hosting two experts that can give us a in-depth perspective on the intelligent steps to to take in our aging journey.

Claudia Kawas, MD, Professor of Neurology, UCI School of Medicine, and lead investigator of the “The 90 + Study” (as seen on 60 Minutes) is dedicated to advancing knowledge about the cognitive and physiological changes that occur in aging.  Since 1989, hundreds of older adults have contributed their time and effort to helping scientists explore healthy brain aging.

Claudia Kawas, MD, Professor of Neurology, UCI School of Medicine, is a geriatric neuro…