The latest Dietary Guidelines for Americans report has identified serious nutrient gaps in the typical American adult diet, with the top nutrients of concern being dietary fiber, calcium, vitamin D, and for females of menstruating age, folic acid and iron.1 These last four nutrients are especially significant for women.
Nutritious Diet vs. Nutritional Supplements
According to the Dietary Guidelines, low intakes of these nutrients are primarily due to eating patterns that are low in vegetables, fruits, whole grains, and dairy. Fortunately, healthy eating is on-trend, but many Americans still have a long way to go to achieve optimal nutrition.
Fortified foods and nutritional supplements can play an important role in meeting these nutrient shortfalls—especially those containing calcium, vitamin D, folate, and iron for women.
Macronutrients for Women2
Women should aim for about 46 grams of protein and 130 grams of carbohydrates per day, while limiting their fat intake to 20-35% of the day’s calories.
Fiber needs range from 22-28 grams daily, depending on age. As a nutrient of concern, fiber (which is plentiful in whole grains, vegetables, and fruits) is important in supporting digestive and heart health. Women of every age should strive to keep their added sugars and saturated fat intakes below 10% of their daily calories.