Where Are the Calcium Rich Foods?

November 12, 2012

Where Are the Calcium Rich Foods?

Your doctor has told you that you need to eat more calcium. Women approaching their menopause are often told this in order to avoid or lessen the effects of osteoporosis. Or perhaps you’ve been diagnosed with too much calcium in your blood. You are instructed to temporarily stay away from calcium rich foods. But can’t you just take an over the counter calcium supplement? No. Doctors and nutritionists debate whether calcium supplements do any good for people because the body often has trouble absorbing the calcium. People also need an adequate amount of vitamin D in order to be able to digest calcium. Some people also get very nauseated or vomit after taking a calcium supplement. The best way to get your daily recommended dose of calcium is by eating calcium rich foods. Dairy Products All dairy products contain calcium, although some dairy products are much healthier for you than others. Choose skim or no-fat milk rather than whole or full-fat. Skip ice cream and instead have ice milk or try ricotta cheese. Other dairy choices include yogurt, cheese and low-fat cottage cheese. Did you know that just one cup of low-fat cottage cheese contains 206 milligrams of calcium? Soy Products Many people cannot eat dairy products because they are lactose intolerant. This happens when the body can no longer digest the sugar in milk, lactose and can cause painful symptoms such as cramps, vomiting and diarrhea. For these people, soy milk is a healthy and tasty alternative. Tofu is a white protein-rich food made from soybeans. Sometimes it is sold as bean curd. Many commercially available brands of tofu are fortified with calcium. Another soy product is tempeh. One-half cup of cooked tempeh can give you 77 milligrams of calcium. Fortified Foods Look carefully on your grocery store shelves. Because of the demand for calcium rich foods, many products are now fortified with calcium. These include protein bars, hot cocoa powders, breakfast cereals and orange juice.

Oily Fish

You may already know that oily fish like sardines, canned tuna, trout and salmon contain hard to get omega 3 fatty acids, but did you also know that oily fish are also one of nature’s best calcium rich foods? It is much better to eat the fish with bones than without in order to get the most calcium.

Dark Green Vegetables

Many types of dark green vegetables make great calcium rich foods. Just one cup of cooked broccoli contains 61 milligrams of calcium. One medium size artichoke contains 135 milligrams of calcium. Other green vegetables that contain calcium include kale, Chinese cabbage, mustard greens, collard greens, turnip greens and peas.

Nuts, Seeds and Beans

Many types of nuts and seeds contain calcium. Some people like to place these in cottage cheese, ricotta cheese or yogurt. Almonds, sesame seed and roasted soybean nuts contain calcium. Beans or legumes can be added to stir-frys, soups, chilis or salads. Black beans, chick peas, pinto beans, kidney beans, navy beans and lentils all contain calcium as well as protein.

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