It’s common to hear parents advising to consume yogurt, milk, cheese, orange juice, tofu and green leafy vegetables. Mostly this happens because calcium intake can be assured through these products.
Calcium is the most abundant essential mineral in your body. You need it for a range of vital processes that maintain life. However, the most spread reason why calcium intake is necessary for you is its importance for optimal bone health through your life.
Yet, this is not the only motive you should include calcium in your diet.
What are the main health claims for calcium and calcium intake?
- Maintains bone health;
- Helps your teeth stay healthy;
- Contributes to normal energy production;
- Is responsible for correct functioning of your muscles when training;
- Contributes to the normal function of digestive enzymes, thus supporting the correct digestion of fats, proteins and carbohydrates;
- May prevent high cholesterol levels in your body.
In order to support all the health claims mentioned above, let’s see what calcium deficiency can lead to.
Over the long term, inadequate calcium intake causes osteopenia which if untreated can lead to osteoporosis. The risk of bone fractures also increases, especially in older individuals. Calcium deficiency can also cause rickets, though it is more commonly associated with vitamin D deficiency.
Besides that, children with calcium deficiency may not reach their full potential height.
Although you have been reading here how crucial calcium intake is for a spectrum of parts of your organism, it is very important not to go too far with the intake of this mineral.
Including too much calcium in your diet may lead to gastrointestinal discomfort as well as having diarrhea. Constipation, gas and bloating may also hint that the calcium level in your body is too high. On top of that, some link the kidney stone issue with excessive levels of this mineral.
Calcium is amazing, but in order to get more benefits out of it, you may want to pair it up with some other minerals or vitamins.
Magnesium and Zinc in combination with calcium contribute to maintenance of muscle and bones in the body.
L-Lysine may aid utilization and absorption of Calcium, stopping it from being lost in the urine.
Vitamin D contributes to normal absorption/utilization of calcium and normal blood calcium levels.
Vitamin K participates in the production of many proteins responsible for the structure of bone so it might be a great addition to your calcium intake.
In case you are lactose intolerant or adopted a vegan diet, you can opt for calcium food supplements to supply your body with this mineral. However, before purchasing any supplement, be sure to consult a professional in the field of nutrition.