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It is important to make sure you find correct, scientific, and evidence-based nutrition information. Here are some recommendations from Healthy Ireland’s healthy eating guidelines.

Women between the ages of 19 and 50 are recommended to eat healthy for a number of reasons. One is to prepare their body for pregnancies. Taking folic acid supplements is vital in case you become pregnant. Women of child-bearing age who are sexually active should take a folic acid supplement (400ug) every day. The reason for taking this supplement is because 70% of neural tube defects can be prevented in babies if the folic acid supplement was taken at least 3 months before getting pregnant.

 42% of Irish women may be at risk of being deficient in iron. This is normal due to blood losses from menstruation. Before deciding on taking iron supplements, you should get your iron status checked by your doctor.

Everyone in Ireland is recommended to take vitamin D supplements, especially during the Autumn and Winter months as we don’t get enough from our diet and we don’t get enough sun exposure. This is needed for bone health and to prevent getting bone diseases as we get older.

Calcium is also needed for healthy bones. You can get calcium from your diet, especially from dairy products and leafy greens. Taking care of your bone health from a young age will help reduce the risk of bone diseases as you age.

It is also important to stay active. It is recommended to get at least 5 days of 30 minutes of activity each week.

To look at more specific portion size recommendations for each food group, check out the Irish Food Pyramid!

Following these healthy eating guidelines will help to protect against heart diseases and cancer. These guidelines can also help you to lose weight or to gain weight (if that’s what you are looking for), or to even help you maintain your weight. However, the main thing to understand is that these guidelines are created for the general public living in Ireland to help you to stay healthy and prevent you from becoming ill.

Oh, and don’t forget to stay hydrated!  

 

A nutritionist and a masters student
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