As women age, their dietary needs change with time. Activity levels, hormonal issues and the cessation of monthly cycles all contribute to a woman’s changing body. Once a woman reaches 50, her metabolism slows down, her bones become more brittle, and she is at an increased risk for heart disease. Understanding the importance of nutrition can help women over 50 maintain their health.
Vitamin D Foods
Vitamin D is an important nutrient for women over 50. It serves several purposes in the body, including assisting mineral absorption and helping maintain the metabolism. In addition it helps prevent cancer as well as regulate blood sugar levels. Foods that contain vitamin D include dairy products. Women need approximately 2,000 UI a day of vitamin D. It is physically challenging to eat enough dairy products to get the correct amount of vitamin D; therefore, supplements to go along with food is recommended by Women to Women’s website.
Women over 50 are at an increased risk for osteoporosis. Calcium helps strengthen bones, which can help protect women from developing this disorder. Calcium can be found in dairy products as well as raw almonds and broccoli. Women over 50 need to take in 1,200 to 1,500 mg of calcium daily.
Though a woman’s iron requirements start to decline after the age of 50, she still needs approximately 8 mg a day. This can be done by eating foods rich in iron, including red meats, fortified cereals and leafy greens such as spinach. The reason women over 50 typically have a reduced need for dietary iron is because once they cease having monthly periods, their bodies stop missing losing it through loss of blood. If a woman is still having periods after the age of 50, then dietary recommendations will remain at a daily requirement of 18 mg per day.