Article Summary:An overview of women's nutritional requirements and recommendations to stay fit and healthy.
As a woman, your body is very complex. Throughout every phase of your life you will require extra care and nutritional support. Today's scientific advances support a number of natural choices for women, like soy. Still, the fact remains that calcium, folic acid and iron continue to be the most important nutrients that can impact a woman's total health. All women should take a daily multiple vitamins with these essential nutrients.
Calcium is essential to strong healthy bones.
As a woman you have a much greater risk of developing osteoporosis because you have less bone tissue and lose bone more rapidly then men do. Be sure to consume adequate calcium throughout life, as this may reduce your risk of osteoporosis later in life. Calcium is essential to the health of bones, teeth and skin, yet few adults get enough of it in their diets. Make sure you find a high quality calcium supplement to ensure you receive a health-enhancing daily allowance.
Folic acid impacts women in many ways.
It plays an important role during rapid fetal growth and development. In fact, adequate intake of folic acid as part of a healthy diet before and in early pregnancy may reduce the risk of having a baby with a birth defect of the brain or spinal cord. All women of childbearing age are recommended to consume 400 mcg of folic acid everyday starting at least one month before conception into the early weeks of pregnancy.
Folic acid also plays a role in the maintenance of normal homocysteine levels; elevated levels of homocysteine are believed to be a risk factor of heart health.
Iron is a vital nutrient that plays an essential role in forming healthy red blood cells and transporting oxygen. It's estimated that as many as 62% of women over the age of 20 are not meeting the RDA for iron. Women also tend to be low in iron because they tend to eat foods low in iron and lose iron through menstruation.
Drinking a glass of orange juice with your cereal can boost iron absorption by the body. Vitamin C helps the body metabolize the iron. A high quality Vitamin C supplement rich in antioxidants to help fight the harmful effects of free radicals is a wonderful supplement not only to assist iron absorption, but also to combat ageing.
Vitamin C is coveted for its many benefits, including a contribution to healthy bones, teeth, blood vessels and the production of collagen.
In addition to taking a daily multiple vitamin, routine exams are key to prevention and healthy living. You should have a yearly gynecological exam that includes a pelvic exam, breast exam and PAP test. Also, consider performing monthly self-breast exams to familiarize yourself with how your breasts normally look and feel. If you are over 40, you should have a mammogram every year.
Kim Beardsmore is an Independent Herbalife Distributor, weight loss coach and author of the online magazine Weight Loss Health. She has a Bachelor of Science degree, majoring in Biochemistry and Histology. For recipes, articles, a newsletter, and tips to burn fat, boost energy and block cravings, visit her website at weight-loss-health.com.au