It’s National Nutrition Month — Are You Getting Enough Calcium?

Calcium is noted to be one of the most important minerals, especially when it comes to bone health. But did you know that calcium has countless other benefits? During infancy calcium is required for initial bone and teeth growth. During adolescence when bones are developing, calcium is needed to support bone and teeth development. A consistent calcium supply is important for growing children and teens as it can substantially reduce the risks of osteoporosis later in life. As we continue to age our bones tend to become porous and less dense, which calls for even more calcium. How much calcium do you require?

Natural sources of calcium include dairy products like milk, cheese, and yogurt. Nuts, salmon, sardines, seeds, pulses and leafy green vegetables are also great sources, but the best source is broccoli. But calcium can be depleted by many different medications, including regular use of antacids, anti-inflammatories containing steroids, and some blood pressure lowering drugs.

Here is a list of some of the benefits of calcium:

  • Strengthens bones
  • Prevents obesity in both men and women (when combined with a healthy diet and lifestyle)
  • Protects cardiac muscles
  • Prevents colon cancer
  • Prevents menstrual blues
  • Prevents kidney stones
  • Ensures a healthy alkaline pH level. Unhealthy pH levels contribute to cancer, kidney stones, and hypertension.
  • Helps control blood pressure
  • Maintains healthy teeth and gums
  • Helps in transportation of nutrients

Calcium is a vital element of the human diet. Although it is widely neglected, it is known that deficient calcium intake can result in many serious diseases in the long run.