6 Common Nutritional Deficiencies in US Women
During the research, physicians concluded that the female body most often lacks vitamins D and B12, iron, magnesium, iodine, and omega-3 fatty acids.
This is one of the essential vitamins for the body. And it is this vitamin that often lacks in the female body (and in the male body), even though the body can synthesize this vitamin in UV light. Vitamin D plays a vital role in calcium absorption, and its deficiency brings about problems with bones. Moreover, vitamin D is needed for regular heart activity, immune and hormonal systems.
Out of the whole group of B vitamins, B12 deficiency is the most frequent. Its deficit is characterized by weakness, increased dryness of the skin, the tendency to constipation and irritability. Vitamin B12 plays an essential role in the synthesis of hemoglobin, a compound that is part of the red blood cells. Low hemoglobin causes oxygen starvation.
Vitamin B12 is vital for people of all ages. Still, especially after the age of 50: its deficit is related to cognitive dysfunction. Even a moderate lack of B12 can cause a decrease in brain function and chronic tiredness. Products such as liver, muscles, prawns, sea fish, cheese, yogurt, and eggs can saturate the body with vitamin B12.
Many women suffer from a lack of iron and anemias caused by it. WHO suggests that 30% of the Earth's population lives with iron deficiency-related anemia. The signs of low hemoglobin are muscle weakness, fatigue, hair loss, frequent headaches, dizziness. Women of reproductory age, teenage girls, and vegetarian women are at risk of developing anemia. They should regularly check iron levels and group B vitamins in the body. Women lose a lot of iron together with blood during the period. Weak anemia can be dealt with by regulating the diet: the addition of products rich in iron and vitamin C, which helps the iron to be absorbed better. In severe iron deficiency, the physician will prescribe medications.
The next on our list is magnesium. It is essential: it participates in more than 300 biochemical reactions in the body. Physicians think that modern women suffer more from magnesium deficit than previous generations. The reason is chronic stress, unhealthy habits, inaccuracies in nutrition, frequent use of medications. Signs of magnesium deficiency are muscle spasms, frequent headaches, digestion problems, frequent tiredness, irritability. Women of older age are at higher risk due to magnesium deficiency.
Legumes, leafy vegetables, seafood, nuts, and seeds can top up the magnesium levels in the body. You can also try using vitamin complexes and nutritional supplements but first consult with your physician.
Doctors noted that women between the age of 20 and 40 suffer the most from iodine deficiency. Amongst this, iron is essential for women of reproductive age: it is mainly responsible for pregnancy progression and correct embryo development, including the brain's formation.
Iodine is also required for the normal functioning of the thyroid gland. It takes part in the synthesis of T3 and T4 thyroid hormones, which are responsible for metabolism. One of the ways to add iodine to your diet is to eat iodized salt. But it is recommended to add it at the end of cooking, as iodine disintegrates when heated. Seafood is also a good source for this critical element.
Replenishing the lack of iodine in the body will help you reduce the risk of developing thyroid diseases (hypothyroidism, Graves' disease) and hormonal disbalance, serious complications during pregnancy, and help eliminate tiredness and weakness.
Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Often, our diet has enough omega-6 fatty acids that are contained in vegetable oils and whose excess induces inflammations in the body. Yet, omega-3 fatty acids in sea fish (salmon, mackerel, sardines, tuna) are in deficiency. Amongst this, omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids are working best in the 2:1 ratio. This ratio ensures the regular activity of the heart, blood vessels, brain, nervous system, protects from arthritis, depression, and Alzheimer's disease.
You can get rid of the omega-3 deficit by consuming sea fish several times a day. You can also, as an alternative, take food additives of omega-3 – 1000mg daily.