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Your suitcase is packed, your neighbor is feeding the cat, and you're ready to go. There's only one problem: you suffer from motion sickness. But instead of ending up huddled over an upchuck bag, try a cup of red raspberry leaf tea an hour or less before you go. This alternative to prescription and over-the-counter antinausea medications won't knock you out--and it tastes good, too. Red raspberry leaf tea--which shouldn't be confused with the raspberry-flavored teas sold in supermarkets--is available in health food stores. So brew a cup, sit back, and enjoy the ride.
The number of HIV-positive women in Africa is now greater than that of men, according to the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS). Sub-Saharan Africa continues to be the hardest hit area in the world: nearly 70 percent of all HIV-positive people live there. One barrier to treating the disease is the stigma attached to it. In many African languages, the common euphemism for AIDS is "Shame has fallen on the earth." Recently, both the U.N. and the U.S. government announced new commitments to confronting the AIDS crisis in Africa by increasing vaccine research and developing prevention programs. The White House also plans to work with African business leaders to improve treatment options.
Combine an up-to-the-minute guide to alternative treatments with articles on the history and current state of women's health care by feminist writers and practitioners, and what do you get? For Women Only!: Your Guide to Health Empowerment (Seven Stories Press, $49.95) by Gary Null and longtime feminist health activist and Ms. contributing editor Barbara Seaman. Want the latest info on osteoporosis treatments? A feminist analysis of women and muscles? A discussion on smoking and self-image? It's all here, in one groundbreaking edition that is really two books in one: the health guide and the anthology of feminist essays. There are even tips for navigating today's harried health care superhighway.
Most adults would be insulted by the notion that they need a chaperone. But it may not be such a bad idea when you're visiting a gynecologist. A companion isn't required by law but experts--including the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG)--believe that bringing one is in the best interest of doctor and patient. A chaperone can reassure the patient "about the professional context and content of the exam and . . . offer witness to the actual events taking place should there be any misunderstanding," according to an ACOG statement. So bring along a friend, or ask that a nurse be present.
Are you one of the thousands of women with disabilities who are trying to find a doctor they can trust? Are you one of the many who have been subjected to the indignity of having a doctor tell them, "I don't treat people in wheelchairs?" Two groups are working to help break down the barriers to good health care. The Center for Research on Women with Disabilities provides info on dealing with problems ranging from doctors' attitudes to financial need. Contact them at (800) 44-CROWD or (713) 960-0505; visit their Web site at www.bcm.tmc.edu/crowd. The National Women's Health Information Center can also help. They're at (800) 994-WOMAN or (888) 220-5446 (TDD). You can visit their Web site at www.4women.gov.

Copyright Ms. Magazine 2009