width=131At any given time up to 50% of American women are dieting. While maintaining a healthy weight is important to overall health, in their zealousness to lose weight many women may be harming their bodies by not getting proper nutrition.

Before you start on a weight loss plan you should examine your reasons. Is your weight over the healthy limit set by your doctor, or are you suffering from a bad body image? Could changing your diet slightly, as opposed to losing weight, help the issues you are dealing with? Once these issues have been clarified, you should consult with your doctor and proceed with a safe and effective weight loss plan.

If the diet you select gives you less than 3-4 servings per week of meat, you need to arm yourself with extra Iron, Vitamin B-12, and Zinc. Iron and B-12 help the body regulate energy and Zinc is a powerful antioxidant. If you are eating less that 6-11 servings of grains per day, make sure to take extra B Vitamins, for energy, Vitamin E, another antioxidant, and fiber (such as in Nature Made's Optimize nutritional beverage). Antioxidants again become an issue if you are eating less than 5-9 servings of fruits and vegetables per day, especially in getting enough Vitamin C.

Other food groups in our diets we tend to think we should avoid entirely are vitally important to our bodies. The Calcium and Vitamin D we get in dairy foods are essential to our bones. If you consume less than 4 servings per day of dairy foods you should be taking calcium supplements that contain Vitamin D. Fats and Oils also provide us with essential fatty acids. If you are eating a very low fat diet you should make sure to take Vitamin E and Omega 3 fatty acids to help maintain your heart health and optimal cholesterol levels.

Most of all remember to keep your weight loss goals realistic, exercise regularly, and be in it for the long haul-your reward will be a happier, healthier you!

Source: Naturemade