Decoding Women’s Nutritional Needs As Per Their Age
Women’s bodies undergo drastic changes throughout their lives. And as their bodies evolve through these different stages, their bodies’ nutritional needs also change. While taking dietary supplements is a great way to meet these needs, it is also important to choose the right supplement as per your age.
We have broken down women’s nutritional needs in the most prominent stages and have given a quick list of nutrients and minerals that one should be paying attention to during that stage:
PMS and nutrition
The hormonal interplay during the menstrual cycle affects women’s bodies in numerous ways. Their body requires a higher amount of energy during the premenstrual phase. You must have noticed those weird and irresistible food cravings a few days before ‘the date’. Other symptoms of PMS include moodiness, tiredness and even constipation. B-group vitamins (especially vitamin B6) can help manage PMS symptoms.
Apart from this, many women face iron deficiency during their periods.
Iron and Periods
Iron is an essential mineral that works with other substances to create haemoglobin, the carrier of oxygen in the blood. Women need more iron than men because they lose blood (and iron) during their menstrual periods. Around 1 mg of iron is lost during everyday bleeding.
Insufficient iron in blood leads to anaemia. Common symptoms of anaemia include tiredness and breathlessness. However, one can depend upon foods like red meat, chicken, fish, green leafy vegetables, legumes and nuts to get enough iron; it is advisable to include an iron-rich multivitamin capsule in your health and nutrition routine.
Vitamins & pregnancy
Eating a well-balanced nutrition-rich diet is not only essential for the growth of the baby but is also critical for the overall wellbeing of women. It does not necessarily mean that now you should start ‘eating for two', but you should rather be concentrating more on the quality than the quantity.
Some essential nutrients & minerals that you should be making a part of your diet during pregnancy include:
A developing baby needs a lot of calcium to build bones, but pregnant women also need calcium to protect their bones. Therefore, one can depend upon foods like salmon, sardines, dairy products like cheese, yoghurt, and so on.
Folic Acid (folate)
Folic Acid is needed for the growth and development of new cells. It is also instrumental in preventing neural tube defects in the unborn baby. Pregnant women or women trying to get pregnant should add some folate-rich nutritional supplements to their diets.
Women’s bodies demand more iron during pregnancy because of the increase in maternal blood volume and the development of the baby’s blood system. As a result, deficiency of iron during pregnancy can increase the risk of preterm or low birth weight babies.
Apart from the above listed nutrients, multivitamins for women during pregnancy should also include apt amounts of Zinc, iodine, magnesium, Vit B, Vit D, Vit C, and Vit K.
Nutritional needs post menopause
Falling estrogen levels and ageing can cause different types of deficiencies during this phase of a woman's life. Therefore, women health supplements during this phase should include:
Vit B6, B9 and B12
The need for Vit B increases after menopause. These vitamins help in the production of red blood cell production, cognitive development, nervous system function and energy production.
Vit D & Calcium
Weak bones and lower bone density are common problems in this age. Hence, it makes sense to have women's health supplements rich in Vit D and Calcium at this age.
It can be concluded that women should pay attention to the evolving nutritional needs of their bodies and feed it with the right supplements for their health.