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How To Be Your Own Financial Support System and Practice Self-Care During A Crisis

The crisis of COVID-19 has taught everyone how to be more self-sufficient because people are isolated from others and in many ways have had to become their own support systems. It’s important to be reflective of this unprecedented time to take these experiences and turn them into learning moments. Finances are a major cause of stress for Americans; with women, single parents, and those living in lower-income households reporting higher levels of stress due to money. Take time during self-isolation to learn to be your own financial support system and take control of your finances. Map out your financial goals: Take some extra free time to map out your financial goals for the near future. Everyone’s situation is unique but here are some common financial strains that...

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From Fighting Emotional Trauma to Healing and Becoming A Relationship Expert – Meet Montrella Cowan, MSW, LICSW

Originally from Brooklyn, New York, Montrella Cowan, MSW, LICSW who is the founding CEO of Affinity Health Affairs and International bestselling author is a personal trauma and relationship expert. She has spent her career helping men and women heal from personal trauma as a licensed clinical social worker, psychotherapist, and Life Coach. Montrella decided to start her business because of the dire need in our society for Black, culturally-competent mental health professionals who are psychotherapists. Right now more approximately 87% of psychotherapists are Caucasian - leaving all other practitioners of color to make up only 13%. There are also fewer Black therapists. At Affinity Health Affairs, in her practice, she offers a holistic and practical approach, where she gives her clients tips and tools that can...

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How Her Battle with an Autoimmune Disorder Pushed Her to Become a Powerhouse – Meet Lauren Wells

Have you ever received a diagnosis that you weren’t sure how to tackle?  Have you experienced health issues that impacted your outer appearance and overall self-esteem?  Have you lost your spark and felt drained emotionally, physically, and spiritually?  At one point, Lauren Wells responded to say ‘yes’ to all of the above. She was suffering from an autoimmune disorder and had constant battles with her health. Fitness and wellness were here saving graces during some of the darkest moments of her life. Over the past 7 years, she has coupled her journey with extensive study in holistic health to assist Black women on their journey to achieve optimal health and longevity.  Lauren, or LC, is the CEO & Founder of LC Fits You!  She provides holistic and realistic...

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How to Better Yourself During Self-Isolation

Another month of quarantine can be worrisome for many, especially if you’re not taking care of yourself during it. It can be easy to forget about your mental and physical health when it seems like everyone is struggling with their new normal. However, spending hours quarantined by yourself or even with others can have an effect on your well-being, which is why you should use this time to better yourself and your life during self-isolation.  If you’re not sure how to improve, not just your day-to-day but yourself then follow these 5 tips.  Pay Attention to Your Health Even if you’re not feeling any symptoms that have you worried, you should always take care of your health. Taking care of your bodies throughout quarantine will only provide you...

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Changing the Trajectory of Black Women’s Health through Holistic Wellness with Erica Woods

As a certified personal trainer and nutrition coach, Erica runs fitness classes and offers one-on-one training sessions. In addition, over the past 4 years, Erica Woods has taught empowered women and young girls with life skills by organizing grant-funded health conferences in the DMV, reaching over 200 participants.  She addresses a wide array of topics such as financial literacy, mental health, goal setting, and relationship building. Her passion for health and fitness with the intent to help women and young girls live a holistic lifestyle stems from a doctor finding a cyst in her breast. After six months of monitoring its growth, they decided to remove it for precaution. In 2019, Erica established SPN Fitness, LLC in an effort to redefine what it means to live...

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Amateur Boxer Turn Certified Personal Trainer and Medical Exercise Specialist Marita Martina Gumbs

Competing as an amateur boxer, Marita Martina Gumbs knew that in 2010, she wanted to become a NASM (National Academy of Sports Medicine) Certified Personal Trainer. Since her early twenties, her desire has been to help people achieve a healthier lifestyle. More than just gaining muscle or losing weight, she acknowledges that "playing ball with my kids, going on long walking tours to explore a new city, embarking on adventurous excursions while on vacation, and waking up in the morning with the energy to seize the day and give her best" is what fuels her and brings her joy. In 2017, Marita became certified through the Medical Exercise Training Institute (METI) (a part of the American Academy of Health, Fitness and Rehab Professionals) as a Medical...

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The Feminine Touch with Anna J. Lewis

Our BGH Member spotlight shines bright on Mrs. Anna J. Lewis.  Anna is a wife, a mother, a daughter, a sister, a grandmother, a minister, and a women’s health advocate.  Anna knows that finding safe and effective feminine hygiene products is not always an easy feat.  You have to consider the fit, the level of protection, and whether or not the products are made from ingredients that may or may not impact your health and wellbeing.  Instead of sifting through the current options, Anna decided to do her part to revolutionize menstrual health. As a proud Ambassador for the Jewel Sanitary Napkins “Justice for my Jewel Campaign,” Anna helps to educate young women and girls about making healthier, more informed decisions when it comes to their...

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Gone Viral

It’s on every channel, in every newspaper, all over the Internet, and the topic of several memes on social media. It’s become a public health emergency and a possible pandemic. It’s the cause for travel fears, and empty store aisles that usually contain facial masks, hand sanitizer, Lysol, and bleach. By now, you've figured out that the culprit I’m referring to is the Coronavirus. I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to being unnerved at how quickly this disease has gone viral. But what concerns me more is the fact that we are still very reactive when it comes to our health and well-being. Colds, influenza, and other viruses have been in existence since the beginning of time. That’s not to make light of their impact,...

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Above All Else, Guard Your Heart

If you’ve ever been to a doctor’s office, it’s safe to say that you’ve had your blood pressure taken. You may not have understood what the numbers meant, or even asked what the numbers were, but I’m certain you knew that those numbers were significant to your overall health and wellbeing. As the daughter of two hypertensive (high blood pressure) parents, with countless relatives who are also hypertensive and/or have cardiovascular issues, I am at an increased risk for developing high blood pressure. I have managed to maintain a healthy blood pressure, but it’s not without effort. Since the only jeans I control are the ones I purchase in the store, I am very diligent about making sure that I know my numbers. Not only do...

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5 Ways to Keep Your Heart Healthy

Your heart is important.  Very, VERY important.  Just take a minute to think about how NECESSARY your heart is.  Your heart pumps all the blood, delivering oxygen to your body, keeping your mind sharp for you to tackle the day. We put so much emphasis on being healthy, we need to make sure that our muscles are healthy and strong.  So how do we keep our Hearts Healthy?   Eat Healthily  How does our food affect our heart? Your diet plays a role in your risk of coronary heart disease. Food-related risk factors include obesity, high blood pressure, uncontrolled diabetes and a diet high in saturated fats. Therefore, if you are already at risk, it is important to implement a low-saturated fat, high-fiber, high plant food diet as...

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