A woman’s body requires certain vitamins and minerals for it to function properly. Each vitamin and mineral has its specific benefit for the body. Some vitamins and minerals are also needed by women more than men. These vitamins for women include the following:
Folic acid or folate
This vitamin is essential for the body to make red blood cells as well as DNA to create new cells. This will be able to prevent birth defects known as neural tube defects which normally happen during the first trimester of pregnancy. It also prevents premature births and the baby’s having low birth weight.
This is needed by all women who are with child or want to get pregnant. They need to consume 400 to 800 mcg of folic acid every day whether from dietary supplements (most prenatal vitamins include this) or from fortified foods like breakfast cereals. This can be found in green leafy veggies, nuts, beans, lean beef, whole grains, and cereals that have additional folic acid.
Along with calcium, vitamin D can help strengthen the bones and avoid osteoporosis. This also helps inflammation in the cells of the body. Moreover, it also boosts the immune system to fight off germs that can make you sick.
Women who don’t get much sunlight need this vitamin. This is also needed more by women who are Asian-American, African-American, and Hispanic. This is essential for women who are obese and postmenopausal as well as those who suffer from inflammatory bowel disease or have had gastric bypass surgery.
One of the important vitamins for women is calcium. This provides protection and creates strong bones, reducing the chances of getting osteoporosis. The body naturally stores calcium in the bones. Without enough calcium from food, the body will automatically acquire calcium from the bones, weakening them. This vitamin also helps messages to go between the brain and muscles appropriately.
Girls from 9 to 18 years old need 1,300 milligrams (mg) of calcium daily. Bones naturally absorb calcium to build strong bones needed during adulthood and old age. Adult women require 1,000 mg of calcium daily while after menopause they need 1,200 mg of calcium per day.
Vitamin B-12 helps the body in making red blood cells. It also supports the neurons to function properly. Some women are more prone to a vitamin B-12 deficiency. These include pregnant women, those who are vegetarian, and those who are 50 and older.
Iron is a vitamin that helps create healthy blood cells that will carry oxygen to your entire body. This also creates certain hormones and connective tissues in the body. This is needed by women who go through menstruation. Lots of it is lost during menstruation. Iron is also required by pregnant women to ensure enough blood supply for their babies.