Last week, I made a case for women to be mindful of loading their bones with calcium at a young age.
Unfortunately, the reality is the exact opposite. Young women tend to consume only a fraction of the particular calcium they need, contributing to osteoporosis (wasting and weakening of the bones) later in life.
So , what if you missed the particular calcium boat, and you are up in years? Thankfully, it’s never too late to improve the situation, but don’t delay.
Let’s start with dietary choices you can make to increase your intake of calcium — and a warning. Just because you eat a food that is high in calcium mineral does not mean a person absorb all the calcium. The percentage associated with calcium you absorb is called “bioavailability” (BA). For example, dairy products are high on the list when it comes to calcium supplement. As kids, we all were told to drink our milk because it builds strong bones. That’s true, but the BA of milk is only about 30%.
On the upside, however, the content of calcium supplements in milk is very high, 240 grams of calcium per serving which offsets the lower HANDBAG.
What is ‘bioavailability’ plus how can I use it to increase my calcium consumption?
Here is an example: Milk has 30% absorption associated with 240 grams = 72 grams of calcium available to the body. In contrast, broccoli has a BA twice that of dairy, 62%, yet only 71 grams associated with calcium for each serving (62% absorption of 71 grms = 44 grams accessible to the body).
Yes, this stuff can get complicated, so a good rule of thumb is that as you plan your calcium intake, be sure to error on the positive side, but don’t go overboard (more on this below).
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Several factors impact the BA associated with calcium, both good and bad. To increase BA, make sure to exercise regularly. Resistance exercise (lifting weights) is best, and so is any workout that tends to “jar” the bones, like jumping rope and jumping jacks.
Another major factor that helps promote better BA will be Vitamin D. A minimal daily dose of Vitamin D is 600 IU (international units). There are different types of Vitamin D (D2 plus D3), which can be confusing. D3 is produced by the skin with the influence of sunlight, and also is consumed in animal products such as salmon, tuna and mackerel, egg yolks and beef liver. D 3 is more effective than D2. Although you can consume Vitamin D3 in the diet and produce it in the pores and skin, it’s a good idea to be sure you are getting enough to promote BA by taking a multiple vitamin.
On the particular negative side, factors that reduce BA include alcohol, excessive caffeine and salt, stress and smoking. Also some foods, spinach for example, are high inside oxalates that will greatly reduce HANDBAG. Ironically, associated with all the leafy green vegetables, spinach contains the particular most calcium mineral, however the ability to absorb it is usually only about 5%.
What food should I eat to improve the calcium intake?
What are some good meals choices? As mentioned, dairy products are higher on the list (milk, cheese, yogurt, etc . ). But what if you are a vegan or even a vegetarian? This makes getting enough calcium more challenging. For instance, if you are the fish-eating vegetarian like me, canned salmon plus sardines along with edible bones are a good alternative to dairy products.
Vegetables, especially leafy greens, are a good choice with collard, mustard and turnip greens and kale leading the way. In addition , broccoli, cabbage, Brussel sprouts, and red and white beans are good sources. Surprisingly, fruits also are a good source of calcium supplement, and topping the list is dried figs. Other good fruit choices consist of apricots, oranges, kiwi, blueberries and blackberries and papaya.
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Admittedly, getting enough calcium supplements without dairy products plus loading up on vegetables and fruits is a tall order for most Americans who tend to be woefully deficient when it comes to these foods in the particular diet. An option is crafting a blend with fruits and vegetables because the core, plus soy protein powder (chocolate with regard to flavor) plus fortified me llaman milk.
Another option is calcium-fortified foods, like cereals and orange juice. They are usually fortified along with additional calcium, and Supplement D to advertise increased absorption.
What about calcium supplements?
When it arrives to calcium supplements, the issues are complex and there is considerable controversy. Let me touch briefly on a few of the issues plus encourage you to investigate more fully when making the choice to supplement or not.
One thing we know for sure is either too little calcium mineral, or too much calcium is the problem. Not enough calcium supplement contributes to osteoporosis, while excess calcium supplements carries its own health risks. Too much calcium within the blood can end up being caused by a hormonal imbalance, or from excess supplements. Regardless of the source, excess calcium may contribute to kidney problems such as kidney stones, and even kidney failure, plus other potential problems including constipation, high blood pressure, interference with absorption of other important minerals and some medications, and so forth
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Regarding complexity, here is a good example. You will find two main types associated with supplements, calcium carbonate plus calcium citrate. Calcium carbonate should be taken with meals since it needs stomach acid regarding absorption. Calcium citrate can be used on an empty stomach and is absorbed more easily compared to calcium carbonate. However , calcium mineral citrate has a much lower calcium supplement concentration than carbonate, and you need to take more of it.
If you choose to take calcium dietary supplements, don’t overdo it. Plus, you should consider splitting the dosage and do not take as well much at one time, because the particular more a person take the less is assimilated. This is very important as ultimately you want the calcium a person ingest to make its way into the particular bones, plus not linger in the blood where it can cause problems.
Remember to always check with your own healthcare professional before you include any health supplements to your diet.
The particular bottom line is, it is best to get all the calcium supplements you need in your diet. You are not really likely to overdo it, and getting enough is possible with some planning and effort.
Reach Bryant Restaurant stamford grand, a professor of kinesiology and integrative physiology in Hanover College, at [email protected] edu.