Health Benefits of Calcium

Health Benefits of Calcium

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    Remember the saying “Drink your milk so your bones will grow big and strong?” Probably at some point or another those words came from your mother’s mouth. And since then you’ve heard the statement that calcium can prevent osteoporosis, and while this is true proper intake of calcium can also improve your health in other ways.

     

    Some of the other benefits of calcium may come as a shock to you. Though the information is out there it is not often publicized. For instance proper calcium intake can help reduce Hypertension, or improve the function of your muscles, hormones, and cells in the body.

     

    Calcium & Your Muscles

     

    Calcium is an essential element in the process of proper muscle function including the heart. The proper daily dose of calcium is needed to help the muscles of the heart pump properly. Calcium is used to ensure that the heart is pumping in the proper rhythm, however if too much calcium is in the body it can cause the heart to pump too fast or with a irregular beat. In this instance Calcium Channel blockers are used. According to the mayo clinic use of over 2,500mg per day is too much. View the chart below for proper dosage.

     

    Recommended Daily Calcium Intake

     

    • Ages 9-18 1,300mg

    • Ages 19-50 1,000mg

    • 51+ 1,200mg

     

    There are several foods that contain calcium. While milk has been the most well known there are other foods that don’t contain dairy that can provide you with a substantial amount of calcium. View the list below for the proper foods and dietary values.

     

    Calcium Enriched Foods:

     

    • Sardines canned w/ bones 324mg

    • Sesame Seeds 1 oz 280mg

    • White Beans 1 cup [cooked] 161mg

    • Broccoli 1 cup [cooked] 94mg

    • Collard Greens 1 cup [cooked] 226mg

    • Black-strap Molasses 1tbs 172mg

     

    While there are several ways to get calcium through diet it is important to ensure you are getting a safe amount daily. Getting too much or too little can have serious side effects. Paying closer attention to the foods that your eating, and knowing how much is recommended is the best way to stay safe. Consuming vitamin D with your calcium supplements or with your diet can ensure that it is absorbed properly. Vitamin D aids in the transport of calcium throughout the body. Remember a proper diet daily can help your overall health. So remember to eat right, and exercise at least 15-20 minutes daily to stay healthy.

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