Calcium is a vital part of every diet, but many people are not getting all the calcium they need for healthy bones and teeth and also to preventing osteoporosis. Nutritionists recommend that women aged from 11 to 18 consume no less than 800 mg of calcium every day, and that those aged 19 and older get at least 700 mg of calcium every day.
Why You Need Calcium
Since childhood we have been taught the importance of building strong bones. But when we got older even calcium should be consumed in the daily menu. Because, when the level of calcium in the blood decreases, the more calcium is taken from the bone, this is what causes people to suffer from osteoporosis.
The vast majority of calcium in the body, a full 99%, is concentrated in the bones and the teeth, with the remaining 1% distributed throughout the bloodstream, muscles and other body tissues. It is crucial that the body have a steady supply of calcium to draw from at all times.
Milk and food that is made from milk like cheese and yoghurt are source of calcium, and few foods are as rich in calcium and as healthy as is milk. In addition to calcium, milk contains significant amounts of phosphorus, magnesium and potassium. These elements are vital, since they help the body absorb and more readily use the calcium in the diet. In addition, milk contains vitamin D, which is also vital for the utilization of dietary calcium. In addition to milk, vitamin D is derived from sunlight, and from the consumption of meat, canned fish with bones, tofu and green leafy vegetables.
Milk In A Healthy Diet
While many other foods also contain calcium, milk and dairy products have more concentrated levels of calcium, and it is difficult to get the necessary 700-800 mg of calcium without milk in the diet. In order to replace the calcium in a single glass of skim milk it would be necessary to eat three servings of spinach, nine boiled eggs, five large servings of broccoli or 20 servings of lettuce.
Nutritionists recommend that adults drink three and a half glasses of milk every day in order to get the amount of calcium they need in their diet. There are many ways to get that milk besides drinking it plain. For instance, many people find that mixing their milk with a couple of spoons of honey and mixing it in the blender makes a delicious and nutritious smoothie. In addition, milk can be added to your favorite recipes, and used in your daily coffee.
Other calcium sources
The best sources of calcium are milk and other dairy products like cheese or ice cream. Calcium is also found in oranges, sardines, anchovies, shellfish and soy beans.
Calcium and Magnesium
Magnesium is needed so that calcium can be absorbed by the body. Balance is the key. Experts recommend that a 2:1 ratio between calcium and magnesium. If you drink supplement 1000 mg per day, you will need 500 mg of magnesium. Our body can only absorb 500 mg at a time, and will spend the rest. So, you should consume calcium in low doses every day. Calcium carbonate should be taken with solid food, while calcium citrate can be taken with or without food.