A Woman’s Guide to Wellness

 

Photo: [Link]

 

If you aren’t already, take this month to acknowledge the strength, achievement, and hard work of amazing women around you! March hosts International Women’s Day on the 8th, where the globe comes together to celebrate, support, and raise awareness for women’s rights to wellness [1]. “Wellness” here entails everything, from physical health to workplace inclusiveness, and even rightful applause for their success.

 

Joining in on the celebration, NOW Foods has compiled a list of ideas for empowering the wellness of women around us! Check out these foods, supplements, and personal care items that aid in women’s physical and mental health—either as well-deserved rewards for yourself or as a means of support for those around you.

 

Everyone Deserves Healthy Eating

 

Maintaining a healthy diet is a must for everyone, but what constitutes that diet may look different for men and women. Women tend to be more susceptible than men to illnesses like osteoporosis, breast cancer, and autoimmune diseases [2], which makes these 5 foods especially helpful in protecting their health:

 

  • Kale. Its high vitamin and calcium content, along with a high concentration of carotenoid antioxidants, make kale a great anticancer food [3]. Other leafy greens like spinach and arugula also have similar qualities.
  • Flaxseed. Along with loads of fibre, flaxseed contains lignans that help prevent breast cancer [4]. Consuming it is simple: just add a spoon or two of NOW Foods Flax Seed Meal to your regular baking recipes or yogurt bowls.
  • Citrus fruits. These include oranges, lemons, tangerines, limes, and grapefruits. Their vitamin C strengthens the skin and hair, while the flavonoids reduce the risk of strokes in women [5].
  • Ginger. This spice is well known for treating digestion problems, but its calming effects are also great for menstrual pain [6]. When suffering from painful periods, grab a handful of NOW Foods Crystallized Ginger Dices, or a hot cup of NOW Foods Ginger Mint Comfort Tea.
  • Avocado oil. With healthy fatty acids and magnesium, avocado oil has great anti-inflammatory and detoxing powers. Its high vitamin E content helps prevent infertility, too [7]. Incorporating it in your diet is ever so easy with the versatile NOW Foods Avocado Cooking Oil, suitable for high- and low-heat cooking.

 

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One of the best ways to incorporate these foods into your diet is to blend them together! Go extra green with this vegan kale avocado smoothie, using four of the five “superwoman” foods above:

 

Vegan Green Smoothie for Women [8]

Photo: [Link]

Ingredients:

1 cup frozen pineapple dices

1 cup frozen mango dices

½ ripe avocado, sliced

1 inch fresh ginger, peeled

2 cups organic kale

1 cup unsweetened almond milk

1 Tbsp. NOW Foods Flax Seed Meal

1 Tbsp. NOW Foods Avocado Cooking Oil

 

Instructions:

  1. Add all ingredients to a blender and blend on high for 1-2 minutes, until well combined. If necessary, add in more milk to thin the smoothie out.

 

Some Extra Support

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From essential daily vitamins to workout proteins, turning to supplements for fuller nutrition intake isn’t a rare choice now. Take a look at our top 3 nutrients that are particularly vital for modern women’s health, and learn how to take them:

 

  • Iron. A lack of this mineral can lead to low energy, slower brain function, and weak hair and nails [9]. Experts say that most women are low in iron stores as they lose it during periods and pregnancies but fail to restore it. Fill this gap easily with a capsule of NOW Foods Double Strength Iron daily after a meal, which fulfills 200% the daily required iron intake alone.
  • Iodine. This essential nutrient is responsible for normal thyroid function and breast health. Iodine deficiency can lead to conditions like fatigue, weight gain, menstrual irregularities, and even miscarriages in pregnant women [10]. A tablet of NOW Foods Potassium Plus Iodine daily offers general thyroid support to prevent such conditions, along with potassium, an essential mineral for healthy body pH balance.
  • Calcium. Bone health is especially important for women, as they are far more likely to have osteoporosis (a weakening of bones) than men—by about four times [11]. This makes calcium, the key nutrient in bone development, essential to women of all ages. Just two tablets of NOW Foods Calcium Citrate, divided into two portions after meals, helps calcium intake in a readily absorbed form along with other essential bone metabolism nutrients like zinc, magnesium, and vitamin D.

 

For Inner Strength and Beauty

 

Balanced nutrition and healthy eating habits are essential in boosting our health, and it’s through the appearances that this health shows. Strong and shining hair, clear skin, and a stress-free mentality are not only the key elements to beauty but also signs of a healthy body.

 

Complement your lifestyle—or that of those around you—with personal care routines that further reveal the inner beauty and health. Start off with these three essential areas:

 

  • Supplement your skin. Nutrition and nourishment are just as vital for our exteriors as they are for our insides. Consider supplying coenzyme Q10, an essential substance for cell growth, maintenance, and recovery, to the skin [12]. Applying NOW Solutions CoQ10 Antioxidant Serum daily restores a radiant skin tone by firming and smoothing the skin into a healthier look.

 

Photo: [Link]

 

  • Condition your hair. Just as important in good impressions as our face is the condition of our hair. If experiencing hair loss, start your shower routine with a scalp stimulating massage using a few drops of NOW Foods Cedarwood Essential Oil mixed in two tablespoons of NOW Foods Sweet Almond Oil. For shinier hair, drop a bit of NOW Foods Chamomile Essential Oil into your shampoo for softening effects.
  • Maintain strong nails. Nothing shows health and self-care better than properly moisturised hands and firm, shiny fingernails (and toenails). Along with regular use of hand lotions, invest ten minutes before bedtime to soak the fingers in a nourishing cuticle oil to relieve hangnails, splinters, or cracked nail tips.

 

Here’s an easy-to-make DIY cuticle oil recipe that will leave the nails healthy and smelling nice. The key ingredient, NOW Solutions Organic Jojoba Oil, provides nourishment and softening to any skin and hair type, and can be used anywhere including massages, hair conditionings, and skincare routines. It’s met with popular NOW Foods Essential Oils like Rosemary for antifungal protection, Lavender for soothing irritated cuticles, and Rose Absolute for a relaxing floral aroma.

 

DIY Cuticle Oil for Dry, Weak, or Damaged Nails [13]

Photo: [Link]

 

Ingredients:

Empty roll-on or nail polish bottle, cleansed

2 tsp. NOW Solutions Organic Jojoba Oil

2 tsp. NOW Solutions Castor Oil

¼ tsp. NOW Solutions E-Oil

3-4 drops each of NOW Foods Rosemary, Lavender, and Rose Absolute Essential Oils

 

Instructions:

  1. Using a small funnel, pour the carrier oils and vitamin E oil into the container.
  2. Add the essential oils, close the container, and gently shake to combine.
  3. Use daily, or at least a few times a week for best results.

 

 

 

 

References:

[1] https://www.internationalwomensday.com/

[2] https://www.webmd.com/women/features/5-top-female-health-concern

[3] https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/breast-cancer-foods#foods-to-eat

[4] https://www.webmd.com/women/ss/slideshow-women-superfoods

[5] https://www.stylecraze.com/articles/benefits-of-citrus-fruits-for-skin-hair-and-health/

[6] https://www.webmd.com/vitamins-and-supplements/ginger-uses-and-risks

[7] https://www.lybrate.com/topic/avocado-oil-benefits-and-side-effects

[8] Recipe adapted from:  https://www.ambitiouskitchen.com/green-smoothie-recipe/

[9] https://www.eatthis.com/news-essential-supplements-women-doctors/

[10] https://platefulnutrition.co/the-importance-of-iodine-for-womens-health/amp/

[11] https://www.webmd.com/osteoporosis/guide/osteoporosis-risk-factors

[12] https://www.afwomensmed.com/health-library/hw-view.php?DOCHWID=ug1977spec

[13] Recipe adapted from: https://alifeadjacent.com/diy-cuticle-oil/

 


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