Many pharmaceutical companies now formulate vitamin medicines exclusively for women. Men, women and children need vitamins and minerals in their daily diet; however, the vitamin requirement of the two sexes differs from each other. Along with vitamins women require additional nutrients that can be taken in supplement form. Every woman over the age of twenty five must make it a habit to take vitamin supplements a few times in a week.
This is important for a woman who is a full-time mother or a woman who is a full-time professional. The stress and chaos during the day can make a woman favor junk and other unhealthy stuff to satiate her hunger pangs. However, these foods offer little or no nutritional value. When the body does not get enough nutrition it is almost impossible to carry on with your day-to-day activities.
To tide over this nutritional deficiency it is important to take vitamin and mineral supplements. Before you decide on taking vitamin supplements you must first understand your body’s requirements and your daily diet. This will help you choose your vitamins carefully. You must also get an understanding of each vitamin, its importance and its daily dosage.
Vitamins To Maintain Women’s Health
Vitamin A helps build bones and makes them strong and healthy. It also strengthens the skin, tissues and mucous membranes. Sufficient amounts of vitamin A in your daily diet will boost the immune system and help the body fight off infection causing bacteria.
Vitamin A is also important for maintaining healthy eye sight. Our daily requirements of vitamin A are met by the food that we intake so women don’t really need to take supplement for vitamin A. However, if you have vitamin A deficiency then don’t skip the supplements.
The B group of vitamins is essential for formation of red blood cells in the body. Vitamin B also helps in regular and healthy functioning of the brain. Pregnant women require vitamin B for building DNA. The most important of Vitamin B groups is vitamin B9 or folic acid. Read on to learn more about vitamin B9.
Folic acid is an important requirement for women who are planning to conceive and for women who are already pregnant. Folic acid helps in the prevention of certain birth defects and is also helps in the brain development of the growing fetus.
This is one reason folic acid is given during the first trimester of pregnancy because by this stage the fetus develops almost 90% of the brain. Women who aren’t pregnant get enough folic acid or vitamin B9 from their daily diet. However, pregnant women need folic acid supplements every day for a period of three months. Prenatal vitamins have sufficient quantities of folic acid to meet the pregnant woman’s daily requirements.
Vitamin D is considered the most important source of calcium and phosphorous. Both the minerals help keep the bones strong. When there is deficiency of calcium in the body the body starts using the calcium stored in the bones which makes the bones weak and they start shrinking with time. Vitamin D and calcium supplements must be taken together.
Check with your doctor before taking vitamin D supplements. He/she may have an advice or two to give if you want to combine vitamin D and calcium tablets. The best source of vitamin D is the sun. Hence women are advised to soak themselves under the sun for 5-10 minutes every day. Even infants are exposed to rays of the sun to make their bones strong. There are some fortifies foods as well which contain good amounts of Vitamin D.
Women need sufficient quantity of calcium every day. Calcium is required especially by pregnant women and nursing mothers because it helps in the production of milk. Calcium is also needed by the body during and after menopause to ensure prevention of osteoporosis. Calcium helps make bones strong. Lack of calcium in the body can lead to brittle and weak bones. Calcium deficiency often leads to osteoporosis in women especially in those women who are on the brink of menopause.
Women between the ages 19 and 50 should take 1000mg of calcium every day to meet their daily requirements. Women who have reached their menopause and are over 50 years should include a minimum of 1200mg of calcium in their daily diet or in the form of a supplement. Milk and other dairy products are rich sources of calcium. However, not many women are particular about their daily intake of calcium. Supplements can easily help tide over this problem. Simply pop a calcium tablet to meet your daily requirement of calcium.
Vitamin E is known for its properties that help keep the hair and skin healthy and strong. Vitamin E oil is also commonly used in many cosmetic products to maintain skin and hair.
The vitamin is also known for many of its medicinal properties including healing of inflamed skin. a vitamin e capsule should be taken every day to tide over any deficiency.
Women lose a lot of blood during menstruation. Loss of blood also results in loss of iron from the body because iron is a major component of blood. Hence women need at least 18mg of iron every day compared to men who require only 8mg of iron in their daily diet. Iron is found in foods like green leafy vegetables (spinach and green leafy turnip are a few examples), broccoli, zucchini, legumes, molasses and apricots.
However, it may not be possible to get your daily dose of iron from the food that you eat every day. Iron supplements are therefore recommended. Remember, loss of iron from the body can result in anemia which is sometimes life threatening. Iron supplements need to be taken separately as not many multi-vitamin and multi-mineral capsules contain iron.
Vitamin K is also important for maintaining health of the bones. Vitamin K keeps the bones strong because it contains calcium. However, vitamin K should be taken only in small quantities as overdose will lead to clotting of blood.
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