The field of women’s health, historically understudied and often misunderstood, has finally begun to occupy a crucial place in mainstream health conversations. This shift, while empowering and supporting many women on their health journeys, has also unleashed a flood of misinformation and disinformation. These can be misleading marketing tactics at best, and at worst, they may prevent women from seeking the care they need or even cause direct harm. That’s why we need reliable, authoritative voices like Dr Jen Gunter to guide us through the complexities and bust the myths in this critical field.
“When you’re not bound by the truth, you can say whatever you want.”
Dr Jen Gunter is an internationally celebrated obstetrician and gynaecologist. She is the author of the New York Times bestsellers, The Vagina Bible and The Menopause Manifesto, pioneering a path in reproductive health literature. Fondly known as Twitter’s resident gynaecologist and the internet’s OB/GYN, she has been a steadfast advocate for women’s health, championing for accurate and reliable information to help women make informed decisions about their health. Dr Gunter’s work extends beyond her books, with her writings published in the New York Times, Dame, The New Republic, The Guardian, and more. Her mission is to build a better medical internet, because to be empowered about health one must have accurate information.
“We all misinterpret familiarity as accuracy. If we’ve heard something before, we’re more likely to believe it.”
In this episode, we delve deep into the world of women’s health, with a particular emphasis on understanding and debunking common misconceptions. Dr Gunter shares her knowledge on a wide range of topics, including yeast infections, various forms of birth control, compounded hormones, and supplements. We discuss the science behind menopausal hormone therapy and the myths that often cloud its understanding.
This isn’t just a health masterclass, but also a critical conversation about the misinformation and disinformation that is pervasive in women’s health discussions. Dr Gunter shines a light on the unfounded claims and shady marketing practices that mislead women and potentially jeopardise their well-being. We explore why these misconceptions persist, how to discern fact from fiction, and the importance of fostering trust in healthcare.
Specifically, we cover:
- Intro (00:00)
- Dr. Jen Gunter on Gynecology (2:56)
- Misinformation vs disinformation (8:11)
- Western medicine and the truth about supplements (15:16)
- Tips for discerning online information (20:43)
- Yeast infection and how to really treat it (29:42)
- Can diet treat yeast infection? (38:04)
- Is a vaginal microbiome test necessary? (44:52)
- Understanding menstruation and contraception (47:47)
- Challenges for women in their mid-30s after birth control (54:00)
- Menopause, hormone testing, and symptom assessment (1:01:42)
- The grandmother hypothesis (1:07:13)
- Hormone therapy (1:10:32)
- Bioidentical hormones vs. what’s recommended (1:18:02)
- Alternative treatments for hot flashes (1:26:52)
- What men need to know and how they can help (1:32:42)
- Outro (1:39:38)
I hope you come away from this episode with a deeper understanding of women’s health issues, and the tools to separate credible health information from the noise. This conversation isn’t just important for women – it’s essential for everyone who cares about promoting an equitable health landscape. Dr Gunter is a master at communicating evidence-based information, making this episode a must-listen as we strive for a more informed and healthier future.
Connect with Dr Jen Gunter on Instagram, Twitter, and TikTok. For more comprehensive information, you can read Dr Gunter’s two books, The Vagina Bible and The Menopause Manifesto. Head to her blog, https://vajenda.substack.com/, for frequent newsletters and articles.
Looking for more episodes centred around women’s health? Listen to past episodes on this topic here.
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More about Dr Jen Gunter
Dr Jen Gunter is an internationally renowned OB/GYN and the author of two New York Times bestselling books on reproductive health, The Vagina Bible and The Menopause Manifesto. She’d been called Twitter’s resident gynaecologist, the Internet’s OB/GYN, and one of the fiercest advocates for women’s health. Her mission is to build a better medical internet, because to be empowered about health one must have accurate information. Her writing has appeared in a variety of publications, including the New York Times, Dame, The New Republic, and The Guardian. Her upcoming book Blood: The Science, Medicine, and Mythology of Menstruation will be published January 2024. She also runs a blog, The Vajenda, which is best described as the corner of facts and feminism.