Chris' Corner: Ontario: Grand Valley

Calcium does your body Good!

The Dietary Reference Intake for Calcium and Vitamin D from the Institute of Medicine, 2010 recommends:

calcium and vitamin D intake

Not only do you need calcium to build and maintain teeth and bones, Calcium also plays a role in controlling blood pressure, helping your muscles work (including your heart), and may help in maintaining a healthy weight.

Your body cannot make calcium so you need to get your calcium from either your food or your food supplements.

Do not attempt to consume your daily requirement of Calcium at one time since we cannot absorb more than 500 mg of Calcium at a time.  It is important to note that the institute state daily upper level limits.  This seems to suggest too much Calcium is not recommended...

Natural Calcium sources

Though supplements are acceptable, Milk and alternatives also provide other nutrients such as Vitamin D, Vitamin A, phosphorus, and magnesium. You can boost the level of Calcium in your meals (if you require more calcium in your diet) by:

  • Add milk to your hot cereals instead of water
  • Try Calcium fortified beverages (such as Soy drinks and fortified Orange Juice)
  • Add milk powder to mashed potatoes, baked goods and smoothies
  • Drink milk with your meals
  • Add cheese (preferably lower fat) to your sandwiches, casseroles, soups, and scrambled eggs or omelletes
  • Add white beans and soy beans to your diet
  • Eat the bones in canned salmon and sardines
  • Snack on a handful of almonds
  • Try smoothies with fruit, yogurt and tofu
  • Choose puddings or yogurt for dessert

Calcium in food

The most common Calcium supplements are:

Calcium Carbonate

  • Can be a higher amount of calcium per dose / less doses needed
  • Has to be taken with meals since it may irritate your stomach
  • Is absorbed well

Calcium Citrate

  • Lesser amount of calcium per dose / more doses needed
  • Can be taken on an empty stomach
  • Is absorbed very well

**NOTE** Calcium from foods or from supplements can interact with many types of prescription medications. It is very important that you discuss your calcium intake regimen with your doctor or pharmacist.

Chris Smith CSSBB
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Comment balloon 6 commentsChris Smith • June 29 2011 12:06PM
Calcium does your body Good!
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The Dietary Reference Intake for Calcium and Vitamin D from the Institute of Medicine, 2010 recommends: Not only do you need calcium to build and maintain teeth and bones, Calcium also plays a role in controlling blood pressure, helping… more