Maylin Rodriguez-Paez, RNMen and women are created equal, but they sure do have their differences.
For this reason, most women could benefit from a little nutritional tailoring to their specific needs.
So women, if you've ever tried to figure out which supplements are right for you, you can relax a little now. Why? Because this post should remove a lot of the guesswork from the equation.
Below, we’ll cover 3 fundamental nutrients that nearly every woman should consider as part of her supplement regimen.
Sorry, guys, we had to leave you out this time!
Supplement Basics for WomenBefore we go into specifics, let’s touch on the basics. Simply put, no supplement program is complete without the following nutrients, so they definitely deserve an early mention.
Here’s what just about everyone should be taking:
Maca Supplements for WomenMaca is an herb native to South America. Traditionally, it’s been used for hundreds of years for different conditions, including infertility. Today, maca is used by many women but mostly to alleviate menopause symptoms.
According to one study, up to 87% of women using maca reported improvements in menopausal symptoms, which included hot flashes, night sweats, and mood swings.1
Maca has also been shown to enhance libido, which is something a lot of women struggle with these days.2 Other benefits include anti-depressive and anti-anxiety effects.3
Do we really need to say anything else here? ;-)
Saffron Supplements for WomenMany women (if not most) complain of battling with food cravings and weight issues. Saffron combats both by targeting a woman’s brain chemistry.
It appears to inhibit the re-uptake of dopamine and serotonin,4 two neurotransmitters which play a key role in mood and appetite.
According to research, saffron can help to minimize snacking. In one study, women taking 176.5 mg of saffron extract per day, for 8 weeks, decreased 2-fold their in-between-meal snacks.
They reported a reduced “need” to snack, and after 8 weeks, they lost about 2 pounds … without dieting.5 If this sounds like something you could benefit from, consider giving it try.
Cruciferous Vegetable Extracts for WomenMost women will not develop breast cancer in their lifetime, but all women should take measures to prevent it. And one of the best ways is to increase your intake of cruciferous vegetables.
Broccoli and kale, for example, contain a protective compound called I3C, which has anti-tumor effects that were shown in vitro and in vivo.6
I3C has a good effect on estrogen metabolism. It increases the production of “weaker” forms (i.e. estriol7) of estrogen, which are protective, and it decreases the production of “stronger” forms (i.e. 4-hydroxyestrone8), which are implicated in breast cancer.
What about You?Are you taking any (or all) of these supplements yourself? If so, please share your experiences with us in the comments below!
- Int J Biomed Sci. 2006 Jun;2(2):143-59.
- CNS Neurosci Ther. 2008 Fall;14(3):182-91..
- Menopause. 2008 Nov-Dec;15(6):1157-62.
- BMC Complement Altern Med. 2004 Sep 2;4:12.
- Nutr Res. 2012 May; 30(5): 305-13.
- Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2012 Jul 20;424(1):45-51.
- Nutr Cancer. 1991;16(1):59-66.
- Nutr Cancer. 2001;41(1-2):57-63.
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