Don’t miss the Health Benefits of Calcium Supplements Infographic below the article!
Calcium is the most common mineral found in your body. It is incredibly important to keep your calcium level balanced, as it is crucial for bone health, vascular and muscular contraction, nerve impulse transmission, and blood clotting. It is best to receive your calcium through a balanced diet. According to the Mayo Clinic, calcium is found in foods such as:
- Dairy products (ex: cheese, milk, yogurt)
- Dark green leafy vegetables (ex: broccoli and kale)
- Fish with edible soft bones (ex: sardines and canned salmon)
- Calcium-fortified foods and beverages (ex: soy products, cereal, fruit juices)
However sometimes your diet may fall short and you may not get the daily dose of calcium that your body needs. This is when you may need a calcium supplement. (Remember to consult your doctor before beginning a calcium supplement regime.)
Listed below is the recommended dietary allowance of calcium per day provided by the Office of Dietary Supplements of the National Institutes of Health. Most people do not get this much calcium from their diet and could increase their health through the health benefits of calcium supplements.
- Children ages 1 to 3 years – 700 milligrams (mg) a day
- Children 4 to 8 years – 1,000 mg a day
- Children 9 to 18 – 1,300 mg a day
- Adults ages 19 to 50 –1,000 mg a day
- Ages 50 to 70: Men – 1,000 mg a day; women – 1,200 mg a day
- Both men and women older than 70 – 1,200 mg a day
Health Benefits of Calcium Supplements
Calcium is essential for maintaining strong bones and teeth. For children and young adults, consuming enough calcium helps increase bone mass throughout growth. For adults, it prevents bone loss and the development of osteoporosis.
As stated in the article “Calcium-Rich Health Benefits by Michel Borboa, MS, research shows that calcium may avert weight gain because it “promotes more fat to be burned and less fat to be stored.”
In combination with fruits, vegetables, and low-fat dairy products, calcium can help maintain a healthy blood pressure and inhibits the absorption of dietary fat, resulting in a decrease in cholesterol.
There is no doubt that calcium is essential for your health. However, there is a possibility of ingesting too much calcium. As reported by the Mayo Clinic, having excessive calcium may result in health problems such as:
- Kidney stones
- Prostate cancer
- Calcium buildup in blood vessels
- Impaired absorption of iron and zinc
Photo courtesy of Somchai Som, freedigitalphotos.net
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