Celebrating Women’s History Month

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March is Women’s History Month, a time to focus on the many contributions women have made throughout history. It’s also a time to consider how we can support the women we love now and in the future. One way to do that is through encouraging each other to live our best, healthiest lives. With that in mind, let’s focus on the nutrition women need and why.

To Maintain Strength

There’s nothing more empowering than feeling strong. To maintain high bone density, women are often reminded to engage in weight-bearing exercise and consume adequate calcium (1000 mg/day for women under the age of 50, 1200 mg/day for women over 50). However, we speak less about the significant need for women to maintain muscle mass. Sarcopenia, or the slow loss of muscle mass, begins in the fourth decade and accelerates as we age. And significant loss in muscle mass leads to decreased stamina, increased risk of injury, and overall weakness. Encourage the women you love to maintain muscle through strength training and a balanced diet that includes adequate protein (0.8 g/kg body weight per day for most women).

To Have a Positive Relationship with Food

Encouraging a positive relationship with food is so important for the women we love. This means an approach to eating that’s about balance and emphasizes responding to true hunger. It also celebrates an all-inclusive, non-diet way of thinking about meals. Do you know someone who is always on a diet? Do they live with food guilt and struggle to maintain a safe relationship with food every day? If so, consider how you can support them to reframe their “diet” thinking. Offer them a positive communication tool like Guiding Stars, which identifies nutritious options without negative messaging on more indulgent choices that can fit into a healthy lifestyle when enjoyed in moderation.

For Better Mental Health

Science has shown us that there’s a connection between mental health and nutrition. Choose a diet rich in Guiding Stars earning fish, whole grains, and nuts. By doing so, you’ll consume micronutrients that enhance mood, improve concentration, reduce depression, and more.

Regular physical activity is also highly effective at reducing anxiety and improving mental health. And seeking a lifestyle that improves mental wellness doesn’t have to be difficult. Begin with small changes, attainable goals, and changes that allow you to feel successful.

To Reduce Risk of Disease

Lastly, we should help the women we care about adopt a lifestyle that limits the potential for developing chronic diseases. Type two diabetes, heart disease, and obesity, while sometimes impacted by family history and age, are considered “illnesses of environment.” And the risks increase dramatically with unhealthy lifestyle choices. We can often take steps to improve our health picture, even with risk factors like elevated cholesterol or hypertension. Guiding Stars can help you find foods and recipes lower in salt, sugar, and unhealthy fats. You’ll be following a more nutritious diet today, while building better health for tomorrow.