KEY NUTRIENTS NEEDED BY WOMEN
Want to know about nutrients needed by women?
At every phase of women’s lives, regular exercise and proper nutrition are the podiums for food health and optimistic energy. But as we go on with our lives, few mineral and vitamins should be made essential to make sure the energy and health are never on a stake. Knowing which vitamins and minerals are best for your age range can help choose the best supplements and food.
In this article, we have shared the importance of various mineral and vitamins for specific age groups and needs.
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Nutrition for young girls and teenagers
To make sure that early aged girls get all the nutrients they need, it is advised to consume fresh vegetables, fruits, whole grains, dairy products, and lean meat. Two nutrients are the most important and we have added the details on that.
Calcium: Having consumed enough calcium is important for all age groups but it is most important for girls who are in the adolescence or early adulthood to make sure that their bones grow fine. Calcium and vitamin D are often combined in fortified foods such as milk or yogurt. The reason for combining both is that Vitamin D is needed to absorb calcium in the body.
The daily consumption of calcium for young girls aged from 9 to 19 years is said to be 1300 mg of calcium. Natural dairy products are the easiest yet smartest choice for the enough consumption of calcium and it has vitamin D as well which will help in absorbing the calcium. Milk, cheese, yogurt, and butter are the rich sources of calcium in our diet. Other than dairy products, few vegetables also provide calcium such as kale, broccoli, and Chinese cabbage. Many packed juices and tofu’s can be a rich source of calcium supplements. The daily intake for most children is said to be 600 IU per day.
Iron: Iron is responsible for the generation of healthy blood which makes it extremely important for the girls when they start to menstruate. It is a known fact that girls lose blood during menstruation and they also lose iron with it. According to research carried out by the University of Maine, 10% of the American women are iron deficient and 5% have anemia due to iron deficiency. Symptoms of iron deficiency include bad immunity, fatigue, and lower energy levels.
Girls should consume 8 mg of iron every day until they start to menstruate. Girls aged from 14 to 18 are recommended to consume 15 mg of iron per day. The best sources of iron are chicken, beef, turkey, tuna, beans, halibut, lentils, and cereals that have been supplemented with iron. Many multivitamins also include iron minerals.
According to the spokesperson of the American Dietetic Association, many teens consume excess calories in the race of gaining more energy with age. The latest researches show that 18% of young children and teenagers are healthier/obese than they should be. Children who are fat or obese are at a 16% higher risk of being obese as adults. We should encourage young girls and young women to be more physically active while reducing the consumption of high-calorie food which will help in balancing the energy equation. Encourage them to set a healthy pattern that will help them throughout life
Nutrition of Pregnant Women
Women who are pregnant or who are in the age of being pregnant should take care of their nutritional needs. We have added the nutrients that are important.
Folic acid: This form of vitamin B helps in preventing neural tube issues especially spina bifida and anencephaly. These might look minor but can leave devastating effects and can even be fatal. Foods are now being fortified with folic acid. Many women get their folic acid intake from leafy green vegetables as they are high in folic acid. However, in some cases, folic acid supplements are recommended to make sure they are getting the 400 to 800 mg of folic acid.
B12: B12 is equally essential for healthy and strong nervous system development and function. Pregnant women who happen to be vegetarians usually fall deficient on this as it is present in meat and to a lesser extent in dairy. The daily B12 intake should be 2.6 mg for pregnant and 2.8 mg for lactating women.
Choline: Some studies have linked low choline level to the defects in the neural tube. Eggs are the best source of choline. According to research, eating a few eggs per week will ensure the recommended consumption of choline. Other choline-rich foods are kinds of milk, peanuts, and liver meat.
Omega-3s: Omega-3 will help in building healthy brain and nerve cells. Few studies claim that enough consumption of Omega-3 will help in reducing the chances of premature births. However, women who are not pregnant should also consume Omega-3. This oil has proven to reduce the risk of heart diseases which happens to be the death cause of the most number of women.
Vitamin D: Over recent years, many important functions of vitamin D have been revealed. The recommended daily intake of vitamin D is set at 600 IU per day. Get your vitamin level tested if you do not have the sun exposure or if you live in northern areas.
Calcium: Now, this is the most important point as it shows that calcium intake is equally important for women who are important. The daily intake of childbearing-aged women should be 1000 mg to 1300 mg.
Iron: Iron has always remained a critical nutrient. Adult women aged between 19 and 50 must consume 18 mg iron a day. Pregnant women should aim for 27 mg iron a day. According to researches, the volume of blood gets twofold more which happens to increase the demand for iron. After delivering the baby, a lactating mother does not need iron in much amount, only 9 mg as they are no longer menstruating but as soon as the breastfeeding stops, the amount should be changed to 18 mg per day.
Nutrition for Women in their Senior Years
After menopause, women’s bodies change rapidly. The iron intake requirement drops because women are no longer having periods. However, Vitamin D and calcium remain at the top for being consumed enough as they are a basic source of energy.
Hope you now you know all about nutrients needed by women.