Tip of the Day
Listen Up Ladies! Know Your Health Needs
This week is National Women's Health Week, a great time to learn about the unique health needs of women. The complexities of the reproductive system, the ups and downs of female hormones, and the physical demands of childbearing require females to get more of certain nutrients than males.
Make sure you are meeting the following requirements:
Women need more iron than men to replace iron lost from their menstrual flow. For women aged 9 to 50, the requirement is 18 milligrams per day. For pregnant women, the requirement is increased to 27 milligrams per day. To get enough iron from food, eat iron-rich foods such as lean meat, poultry, fortified cereal, enriched rice and beans.
Essential for lifelong bone health, most women don't get enough. Add more calcium to your eating plan by eating three servings of low-fat dairy per day. If you do not eat dairy products, be sure to include three servings of calcium-fortified foods, such as calcium-fortified soy milk, rice milk, orange juice, tofu and some grains.
All women of childbearing age should consume 400 micrograms of folic acid per day from fortified foods, vitamin supplements or both, in addition to the folate found naturally in food. Folate-rich foods include citrus fruits, dark-green leafy vegetables, nuts and beans (legumes).
For more information on women's health, consult a registered dietitian and visit our Nutrition for Women section.
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