nutritional needsIt is not a secret that modern men and women lead a little different lifestyles, with more of physical activities in men, certain specifics of body size and generally different risks for certain diseases and illnesses. Therefore, the concept of optimal nutrition is not the same for men and women, and our men need to consume different products (or, say, different doses of the products) that we, ladies, do.  In other words, the nutritional needs of men and women are different, and below you can find some simple dietary guidelines for women and men.

1. Calories. Certainly, our caloric requirements are defined by such factors as the amounts of daily physical activities, our body size, out metabolism type and so on. Generally, men need more calories for their daily activities, with average amounts around 2,500- 3,500 calories a day (unless they are not professional basketball players or bodybuilders). Women need about 1,500-2,500 calories a day.

2. Vitamins. Vitamin requirements and dosages are strictly individual and should be determined by a specialist. It is very important to control our daily consumption of all vitamins in order to prevent vitamin deficiency and all of its negative effects. Actually, for most vitamins the recommended daily amount is approximately the same for men and women, and the differences are very small (mostly due to body size difference). However, these assumptions may not relate to vitamin D, which is very important for women as it aids calcium absorption and this way serves for osteoporosis prevention.

3. Omega 3 Fatty Acids. The importance of these compounds is well-known: omega 3 acids assist in lowering LDL cholesterol, increasing HDL cholesterol levels and lowering triglycerides levels. Therefore, our nutritional needs in this nutrient is high. It is considered that men should avoid consuming too much of Omega 3 acid since one of those acids, namely alpha-linolenic acid, is presumably increases risks of prostate cancer. That is why men should avoid taking flaxseed oil supplements. However, eating 2 portions of oily fish a week is recommended fro both men and women.

4. Fiber. It is known that natural fiber assists in improving the function of our digestive system and helps in lowering LDL cholesterol levels in blood, this way preventing heart disease and other serious cardiovascular problems. A proper intake of fiber is linked to lower risks of breast cancer and colon cancer. Specialists suggest daily intake of fiber as 25 g for women under 50 and 21 g for women over 50, at the same time daily intake of fiber for men is 38 grams for men under 50 and 30 g for men over 50.

5. nutritional requirementsProtein. Being the main source of energy for us, proteins are essential and vital for us. Primarily, we need proteins to repair and grow new body tissue, and as a rule, modern diet provides us with enough amounts of this nutrient. Sure, nutritional requirements of men in proteins are higher because of their body size. An average woman needs about 45-50 g of proteins a day, and an average man needs about 60 g of proteins.

6. Calcium. Since women have a higher risk of osteoporosis, calcium is considered to be more important for women and a high-calcium diet can effectively decrease risks of this disease. For men, large amounts of calcium can be even harmful as increased consumption of this microelement is linked to higher risks of prostate cancer. Therefore, daily amount of calcium for men should not exceed 800 mg, but for women the recommended amount can go as high as 1,200 mg.

7. Iron. This microelement is also more necessary for women as we lose a lot of iron during our periods and that is why we have higher risks of anemia. The main signs that signal about iron deficiency in women include headaches, inability to focus, fatigue and so on. On the other hand, men may also need iron but in moderate amounts because increased iron intake is linked to higher chances of heart disease. The recommended amounts of iron are 16-18 mg a day for women and 7-8 mg a day for men.

Author Info: Hi! My name is Carla and I am a 5th year medical student at HYMS. I am interested in alternative medicine and I have done months researching the topic of herbal medicine. Besides, I like interviewing people and learning more about their experiences with one or another type of herbal treatments. I am willing to contribute to this site with my knowledge, and I would be happy to help you out to the best of my ability with any specific questions or problems related to alternative medicine.

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