• The Know
  • Posts
  • The Know Daily - Thursday 25 January 2024

The Know Daily - Thursday 25 January 2024

🏊‍♀️ A cold-water swimming study, Argentinians on strike + making the ‘perfect’ cuppa.

Read in 5m 44s Listening to Archie Shepp ∙ Share us to your socials ☝️

🏊‍♀️ Taking the plunge: A new study has found that cold-water swimming can “significantly reduce” menopause and period symptoms.

💼 The parent career progression gap: Half of mums think having children has “definitely” negatively impacted their career progression chances.

☕ Spilling the tea: A US scientist has claimed to have found the secret to making the perfect cup of tea.

France has introduced a month-long ban on nearly all commercial fishing in the Bay of Biscay, a gulf off the country’s western coast, to protect dolphins from accidents with fishing equipment. The move, which affects both French and foreign fishing companies, will see fishing cease almost completely in the area until 20 February.

🏊‍♀️ Taking the plunge

Cold-water swimming can “significantly reduce” menopause and period symptoms, a new study has found. 

What’s the story?
Academics at University College London conducted a survey of 1,114 women who regularly swim in cold water. 785 of those women were going through the menopause at the time - with half reporting that cold-water swimming “significantly reduced” their anxiety. 

“Large minorities” said it also helped to tackle mood swings (35%), low mood (31%) and hot flushes (30%), reported The Guardian, with more than six in 10 saying they swam specifically to address menopausal symptoms.

What else did we find out?
Those who swam for longer or more regularly reported greater benefits, said researchers. 711 women in the study group also had menstrual (period) symptoms, with 38% citing better control of their mood swings as a result of cold-water swimming.

Why is this a big deal?
The study’s senior author Prof Joyce Harper said she hoped the findings would provide an “alternative solution” for women struggling with the menopause and “encourage more women to take part in sports”. 

One 54-year-old woman who took part in the survey described the experience of cold-water swimming as “healing”, and stressed the community it had given her. “The camaraderie, shared stories and laughter are part of the magic,” she said.

That sounds pretty great.
Agreed. It is, however, worth pointing out that cold-water swimming “comes with certain risks”, said The Telegraph, with Harper also emphasising that water quality standards can vary greatly around the UK. 

But if this latest news has left you keen to take the plunge yourself, check out the Outdoor Swimming Society’s tips on acclimatising to cold water. They also have this handy list of local swim groups across the UK.

🙋‍♀️ TRIVIA TIME

New figures from the British Museum have revealed that which county is the UK’s “treasure capital for detectorists”?

A) Nottinghamshire
B) Norfolk
C) Cornwall

Scroll to the very bottom for the answer.

Our newsletters are free, but our work is valuable. Back independent, female-founded journalism for less than £1.25 a week. This directly supports keeping our content free for all and ensures we can pay our team a fair wage.

💼 The parent career progression gap

Half of mums think that having children has “definitely” negatively impacted their career progression chances compared with 30% of dads, a Leaders Plus survey has found.  

Go on…
The survey of almost 1,000 parents found that when people take time out to care for their children, their career progression tends to stall. More than half (60%) of parents said they had decided against applying for a promotion due to caring responsibilities, including 67% of mums.

The study was carried out by Leaders Plus, the social enterprise which supports working parents to progress in their careers. To try and counteract the parent career progression gap, Leaders Plus runs a Fellowship programme to support those with big careers and children.

What else did the survey find?
Although flexible working is “normalised as a term”, it’s often not seen in practice, the report said. Leaders Plus pointed out that just 0.3% of workers are in job shares, for example, and that part-time workers are often at a disadvantage when it comes to promotions and progression.

I’m guessing gender has a role to play?
Of course. While the survey found that nearly half of parents (48%) were promoted after returning to work, dads were nearly twice as likely as mums to be promoted more than once since. The imbalance was even more pronounced for women from minoritised backgrounds.

Anything else I should take from all this?
It’s not all doom and gloom. Half of parents said that having children has had a positive impact on their productivity, while just 15% cited a negative impact. “Work became purposeful. I became a provider not just a worker,” said one respondent. 

So what can we do to narrow the gap?
Employers can do things to prioritise flexible working at all levels, for example, by advertising jobs as flexible by default or by role modelling flexible working from the top.

At an individual level, Leaders Plus recommends that new parents seek out support from their managers and colleagues. Various resources are also available to help narrow the parent career progression gap, for example, the Leaders Plus Fellowship Programme which supports ambitious parents to thrive in leadership roles while juggling children. 

If the above has resonated with you, you can find out more about the Fellowship and access some handy resources here. Applications for the Fellowship close on 20 March 2024.

Would you like to share your experience of returning to work after having a baby?

Login or Subscribe to participate in polls.

☕ Spilling the tea: A US scientist has claimed to have found the secret to making the perfect cup of tea - but her advice for brewing a better cuppa has been met with some scepticism

👑 The return of Ghana’s “crown jewels”: London’s V&A and British Museum are returning 32 items to Ghana under long-term loan deals, 150 years after most of the artefacts were looted.

🇦🇷 Argentina strike: On Wednesday, thousands of Argentinians joined a 12-hour general strike in Buenos Aires to protest new President Javier Milei’s cost-cutting measures. 

🏆 Record-breaking RAYE: The British singer RAYE has broken Brit Award history by receiving seven nominations - the most nods ever given to one artist in a single year.

🏴󠁧󠁢󠁳󠁣󠁴󠁿 Bring on the bagpipes: Burns Night - the annual event honouring Scotland’s national poet - is tonight. For those celebrating, The Independent has four haggis-inspired recipes to “tickle your palate”.

Unwinding in nature with our latest giveaway: a luxurious two-night treehouse stay in the Cotswolds, courtesy of TreeDwellers!

Come for: The fact that the winner can take up to four friends along with them! Couples’ getaway or girls’ trip, you decide…

Stay for: Receiving five extra entries in the draw by referring a friend to us this month.

Recommended by Lily, who thinks the freestanding bathtubs, floor-to-ceiling windows and welcome hamper look especially dreamy.

Got a friend or colleague who would love The Know? Forward this email and get them to sign up by clicking on your personalised code 👉 https://theknowmedia.beehiiv.com/subscribe?ref=PLACEHOLDER

We’ll reward you with goodies from HURR, Grubby and CRU Kafe! You’ve signed up 0 friends so far.

The Know is an independent media company on a mission to help everyone start their day feeling informed and hopeful. We only recommend things we genuinely love but sometimes we make money out of the links we share. This directly supports keeping our journalism free for all.

Here are four ways you can support our work:

⭐ Get clicking - this tells our partners that readers are interested in our content. Let’s get started with this one (or maybe this one!).

Become a friend of The Know - back independent, female-founded journalism for just £1.25 a week. You’ll also get exclusive editions, supporter-only giveaways and more.

Refer a friend - spread the word about The Know and we’ll reward you with some amazing prizes.

⭐ Add us to your contacts or safe sender list - this makes sure we reach your inbox (and everyone else’s) each morning.

Trivia answer: B) Norfolk was the site of more treasure discoveries in 2022 than in any other county, new figures revealed this week - and some of the finds are pretty spectacular

How did you find today’s email?
😍 Loved it 😕 Could be better

Daily emails too much for you? Switch to our weekly Friday edition. Support The Know here.

Did the content change?

This content is free, but you must be subscribed to The Know to continue reading.

Already a subscriber?Sign In.Not now

Join the conversation

or to participate.