Why Calcium in Your Diet
For optimal bone health, to reach peak bone density, and to protect bone as we age, vitamin D and calcium are necessary minerals. In later life, a lack of these nutrients can cause diseases with short or lengthy latency, such as rickets, osteomalacia, and osteoporosis. Information on the popularity of these minerals in India is scarce. The consumption of milk, milk products, and grains has significantly decreased over the past 50 years despite an increase in the RDA/RDI for modern India. This is caused by a change in lifestyle, insufficient milk consumption among different socioeconomic groups, and a switch from cereal to rice and wheat in food intake.
Studies by Chapuy and Dawson-Hughes show that older people who took calcium and vitamin D supplements were 35–55 percent less likely to suffer non-vertebral fractures and age-related bone loss. Vitamin D and calcium are essential components of the medication used to treat post-menopausal osteoporosis and age-related bone loss.
Why Calcium Intake is Important?
Calcium’s function in the body Calcium is involved in:
- Strengthening the teeth and bones
- Controlling the contraction and relaxation of muscles
- Controlling cardiac function
- Ensuring proper blood clotting
- Messages travelling through the nerve system
- Enzyme activity
A deficiency in calcium may cause rickets in children and osteomalacia or osteoporosis in adults.
Calcium levels in the blood are closely regulated. If the diet does not contain enough calcium, the bones will release it into the blood, but generally no symptoms appear. Hypocalcemia, a more severe calcium deficit, is brought on by conditions including kidney failure, digestive tract operations like gastric bypass, or drugs like diuretics that prevent absorption.
Hypocalcemia signs and symptoms:
- Muscle Weakness Or Cramps
- Tingling Or Numbness In The Fingertips
- Unusual Heartbeat
- Lack Of Appetite
People who consistently consume insufficient calcium from their diets or who see a decline in their ability to absorb calcium may develop a gradual, progressive calcium shortage. Osteopenia is the first early stage of bone loss, and if left untreated, osteoporosis develops. People at risk include, for example:
Postmenopausal women—Menopause reduces the body’s levels of oestrogen, a hormone that promotes calcium absorption and bone mineral retention. In order to prevent osteoporosis, doctors occasionally recommend oestrogen and progesterone-based hormone replacement treatment (HRT).
Amenorrhea is a condition where menstruation stops early or is disturbed. It is frequently observed in young women with anorexia nervosa or athletes who engage in intense physical training.
Lactose intolerance or milk allergy: Occurs when the body is unable to digest milk’s casein, whey, or lactose sugar. Intolerant to lactose can be inherited or acquired (not consuming lactose in the long-term may decrease the efficiency of lactase enzyme)
10 healthy foods high in calcium range from 951 mg to 60 mg
CHEESE: 951 mg of calcium in 1 cup of cubed cheese
Cheese is a fantastic source of protein and calcium, adding to the list of foods high in calcium. Consuming cheese is as simple as eating a piece of pie and is a necessary component for many other munchies.
SARDINES 1 Cup of Provides 569 mg of Calcium
Sardines are a fantastic choice among the foods high in calcium that are listed. If you are a meat eater, it is exactly what you require. These little salty anchovies may give salads and pasta an incredible umami flavour.
ROASTED ALMONDS: One cup contains 457 mg of calcium.
Almonds are the highest calcium food, with an astounding 457 mg of calcium per serving. These nuts, which are also high in protein, help lower the risk of heart disease. Additionally, almonds are a fantastic memory booster. You will benefit greatly from eating some of these protein-rich nuts every morning for your health.
YOGHURT – 400 mg of calcium per serving.
Yogurt is a dairy product that comes in a variety of flavours and contains good bacteria for your gut. This protein-rich diet is a fantastic alternative to milk because it contains 400 mg of calcium per serving.
GREEN LEAFY VEGETABLE: 336 mg of calcium in 1 Bunch.
Green leafy vegetables, one of the foods high in calcium, are also high in dietary fibre. In addition to being high in potassium and magnesium, these vegetables include a variety of choices like spinach, kale, celery, and broccoli.
MILK: 280 mg of calcium per cup.
The first thing that springs to mind when we think about calcium sources is milk. Milk is one of the best sources of calcium since it is simple to digest and absorb. A cup of milk contains 280 mg of the needed 1000 mg of calcium, making it an incredible tool for constructing bones from childhood to adulthood.
FIGURES – 242 mg of calcium in 1 cup (dry).
Enjoy this delicious, dessert-like fruit that is also rich in potassium and fibre. One cup of dried figs has a staggering 242 milligrammes of calcium, which helps to strengthen bones. This fruit, which is also high in magnesium, aids in maintaining muscle function and a steady heartbeat. It holds a prominent place on the list of calcium-rich foods.
BOK CHOY: 74 mg of calcium per cup.
This green vegetable known as Bok Choy must be included on any list of non-dairy calcium sources. Bok choy, also known as Chinese cabbage, has just 9 calories and 74 milligrammes of calcium per cup. It is simple to prepare, full of vitamins like A and C, and available all year long.
Orange – 1 Apple has 60 mg of calcium.
We are widely aware that oranges strengthen our immune systems. This enchanted fruit is also on the list of foods high in calcium and vitamin D, which is essential for the body’s absorption of calcium. A medium-sized orange has 60 milligrammes of calcium in it.
SOY MILK: 60 mg of calcium per cup of milk.
The idea that calcium is only found in dairy products is untrue. Products made from non-dairy sources, such as fortified soy milk, can be fantastic sources of calcium and vitamin D.
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A review article by
Dr Bhavna Kalvala (Clinical Research Director @ IEEARC Tech)