How to Get More Calcium
By Sara Butler
It’s not just kids who need their calcium. Everyone needs to keep tabs on their intake of this mineral throughout their lifetime. Calcium helps to keep your teeth and bones strong, as most people are aware -- but it’s also crucial for your nerve function and muscle function too. Plus, calcium isn’t something your body can make on its own, so it must be eaten. Here are some easy ways you can work more calcium into your diet.
The current recommendation for an adult from 18 to 50 is to have about 1,000 milligrams of calcium per day, while adults over 51 should have about 1,200 milligrams per day. The best sources of calcium for a healthy diet are dairy, green leafy vegetables, nuts, beans, and even fortified tofu.
Simple Ways to Get More
You can boost your daily calcium intake by adding a few simple things to dishes you probably already cook. You can:
- Add extra beans to pasta dishes and soup
- Have a yogurt smoothie for breakfast
- Add milk to your morning coffee
- Include green, leafy vegetables in your casseroles
- Buy cereals and juices fortified with calcium
- Make your breakfast oatmeal with milk instead of water
- Drink milk with lunch
- Have pudding make with milk for dessert
- Add nuts to your yogurt as a snack
Fish are a great way to get more calcium too. Fish that are canned are often canned with their bones still in, which turns them soft so they're easy to eat and gives the fish a boost in the calcium department. Try canned salmon or sardines.
Make one meal a week vegetarian and switch out your meat for tempeh or tofu. These plant-based proteins are high in calcium and help to reduce your intake of saturated fat, which is great for your overall health and wellness.
Just Seed It
Sesame seeds are more than a garnish -- they’re a calcium powerhouse. You can add more calcium to your salads or vegetables by sprinkling some tasty seeds on top.
What if You’re Lactose-Intolerant?
You may find yourself avoiding cheese, milk, and other dairy products if you’re lactose intolerant. If that’s the case, you can have your calcium and eat it too by opting for lactose-free versions of your favorite dairy. These items are high in calcium too, so they’ll do the trick without causing you discomfort.
Calcium will always be important to your health, no matter how old you get! So make sure you're getting enough to stay healthy and well.
To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Memphis, Tenn.