Power Foods for Women

By | April 14, 2009

Healthy Foods And Food Supplements For Women

In their lifetime, women undergo many physiological changes, from PMS, to pregnancy to menopause and eventually old age. They are more prone to hormonal imbalance, osteoporosis, depression, mood swings, UTI, and breast cancer. Although the basic nutrition needs of women remain similar to those of men, let’s just say that there are specific nutrients women require in different proportions then men. Magnesium, folate, potassium, calcium, anti-oxidants, phytochemicals, omega fats, MUFAs along with other vitamins and minerals are some of them.

Super Foods For Women

Let us take a look at some of the most essential foods, which every woman must incorporate in her diet to maintain a healthy body and keep the above ailments at bay.

Milk – It is an absolute must for women. Women lose calcium more easily than men and hence are prone to brittle bones and osteoporosis. Menopausal women are particularly at risk of calcium loss. Milk is one of the best sources of calcium. In addition it is an excellent choice as a protein source for vegetarians. It is also abundant in magnesium and phosphorus, which are required for overall bone health.

Omega Fats – These are good fats, which the body cannot make but rather it must be supplemented from external sources. These help fight obesity and lower the risk of heart ailments. They boost serotonin levels, which helps keep depression at bay. They are must during pregnancy and breastfeeding periods as they help brain development. Salmon, olive oil, nuts and seeds, cod liver oil, flaxseed oil, nuts and seeds are good sources of Omega fatty acids.

Wheatgerm – It is the heart of the wheat kernel and is one of the best sources of magnesium, folic acid and Vitamin E. Half a cup of toasted Wheatgerm can provide a woman with her daily dose of folic acid and half the dose of magnesium and Vitamin E. Magnesium is essential for bone development, thyroid function and reducing stress levels. Folic acid helps brain development and prevents ulcers. Vitamin E is essential for skin and helps maintain its elasticity and keep wrinkles at bay.

Berries – Berries are power packed with antioxidants and phytochemicals. These are particularly beneficial to women as they help prevent breast, oral, and colon cancer. They also help prevent urinary tract infections, which are more prevalent in women than men. They contain melatonin, which improves sleep quality and reduce insomnia.

Oranges– It’s an excellent source of Vitamin C, phytochemicals, potassium, folate and soluble and non soluble fiber. Vitamin C, phytochemicals and soluble fibers such as pectin protect against breast cancer and heart diseases. Insoluble fibers provide roughage and help ease bowel movements, thereby relieving constipation. Potassium is essential for women, who are on diuretic medicines, which causes potassium leaching.

Dark Chocolate – It’s one of the best comfort foods and rich in Mono Unsaturated Fatty Acids or MUFAs, which help reduce fat in the belly region. About a quarter cup of semi sweet dark chocolate chips or other versions, which contain at least 60% dark chocolate, can be safely had during the course of the day to meet with the Daily MUFA requirement.

Green Tea – It is packed with anti oxidants and hence fights free radicals. It also accelerates metabolism and hence is a great aid in weight loss efforts. It prevents breast cancers and helps keep the heart healthy.