Women's Health Week


This week is Mother’s Day, but also marks Women’s Health Week.  The health of women impact not only their own lives, but the lives of their families and others. Many are surprised to learn that that health of your grandmother impacts your health too. 

This week, let’s take a look at how women can maintain or even improve their health.

Until adolescence, males and females have similar nutritional requirements. However, once in adolescence, it is important females create healthy habits including eating nutritious foods to achieve their best health. While women generally need fewer calories compared to their male counterparts, they need more nutrients including calcium, iron, and folic acid. Here are a few nutrients that are especially important to women and the foods women should consume to meet their nutrition needs.


Amount Needed

Reason Needed

Food Sources


Adult women need 1,000 milligrams of calcium per day, and once at menopause, calcium requirements go up 1,200 milligrams per day


For reference one serving of dairy foods has about 300 mg of calcium

Maintain bone mass

Canned salmon with bones, sardines, milk, cheese, yogurt, Chinese cabbage, bok choy, kale, collard greens, turnip greens, mustard greens, broccoli, and calcium-fortified orange juice.  Calcium citrate is the preferred form of calcium supplementation


Adult women 19-50 years old need 18 milligrams per day. For pregnant women, their need increases to 27 milligrams per day.


Red meats, poultry, fish, liver, soybean flour, eggs, beans, lentils, peas, molasses, spinach, turnip greens, clams, dried apricots, and fortified breakfast cereals

Folic Acid

400 micrograms per day for women 14 and older; for pregnant women, 600 micrograms per day; for breastfeeding women, 500 micrograms per day


Green leafy vegetables, liver, yeast, beans, peas, oranges, and fortified cereals and grain products. 


Note:  some birth control medications and large doses of nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin), can make it hard for your body to absorb folic acid


25 grams per day

Heart health


In women, heart disease causes 1 in 3 deaths each year. 

Fruits, vegetables, beans, peas, nuts, seeds, and whole grains including whole-wheat bread, oatmeal, and brown rice


Checkout our ad and shop in-store of great prices of a variety of healthy foods!

Here is a general guide for women of all ages:

  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet following MyPlate. Fill half of your plates with fruits and veggies, a quarter of your plates with lean proteins and the last quarter with whole grains. Dairy can be a glass of milk with the meal or incorporated as cheese on a sandwich or pizza or yogurt as part of breakfast or dessert. Learn more about MyPlate

  • If in within childbearing years, ensure you are getting adequate folic acid from foods and/or consume a supplement such as a Women’s Daily Multi Vitamin and Mineral.

  • Limit alcohol use to 1 drink or less per day. One drink is 5 ounces of wine, 12 ounces of beer, or 1.5 ounces liquor. Alcohol can be healthy in moderation, but when consumed in excess can have negative effects including increasing cancer risk.

  • Try to get at least 30 minutes of physical activity most days of the week. Learn more about physical activity as part of a healthy, balanced lifestyle.

Additional healthy lifestyle habits including:

  • Get at least 7 to 8 hours of sleep

  • Get help to quit or don't start smoking

  • Do not use illegal drugs or misuse prescription drugs

  • Wear a seatbelt in cars and do not text and drive

  • Wear a helmet when riding a bike and wear protective gear for sports

For more about women’s health, visit https://www.womenshealth.gov or reach out to us at [email protected]

"This medical and/or nutritional information is not intended to be a substitute for individual advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition."

Stephanie Edson Wellness Specialist SpartanNash Company
Stephanie Edson Regional Wellness Specialist

Stephanie is an award-winning registered dietitian who believes in empowering every individual to make nutritious food choices to support a healthy lifestyle. She believes in the power of food as medicine and loves sharing about nutrition with others.