We have all heard about the importance of calcium in maintaining healthy bones, muscles, and nerves. We can also be aware of the role that calcium plays in intercellular communications. But many do not know that the common daily diet does not offer enough calcium. Unfortunately, this calcium that is lacking in our diet is slowly removed from the bones , creating a plethora of joint and bone-related diseases such as osteoporosis.
Before entering the list of foods with assimilable calcium, it is important that we know the relationship between calcium and its bioavailability. But what is bioavailability? Bioavailability is the degree to which a nutrient is absorbed and used by the body. Therefore, it is more important than the fact that a food contains calcium, it is that it has components that favor its bioavailability.
Foods with assimilable calcium
Dairy products are one of the most bioavailable sources of calcium that exists, therefore , milk, cheese, yogurt, etc. are great sources of calcium intake.
Kale has a high calcium content and an approximate 59% bioavailability , therefore, for people who are lactose intolerant, or who for another reason do not ingest dairy, this type of food can be of great help to reach the recommended daily calcium level.
Leafy green family (cabbages)
The dark green leaves of the Brassicaceae family (cabbage family) are sources of calcium. They contain massive amounts of calcium, like the 158mg found in a cup of Chinese cabbage, and this calcium has high bioavailability. About 3 cups of these vegetables will meet your biological calcium needs . It is advisable to eat some of these foods rich in calcium:
- Boy choy
- Chinese spinach
- Mustard leaves
- Turnip greens
There are many types of seaweed and most contain a remarkable amount of calcium. Because algae have low levels of oxalic acid and phytates, we can assume that this calcium is being absorbed. Seaweed also contains many trace elements that are important for bone health. Perhaps this is why people in East Asia have a lower rate of osteoporosis than in the West, even though they do not consume much dairy.
Dried plums, raisins, and figs
1 cup of plums contains about 100 mg of calcium , or 10% of the RDA. There is some phytic acid in plums that can reduce calcium absorption, but there is also evidence from a study that found eating plums is linked to higher bone density. It is not only the amount of calcium in plums that matters for bone health but they also contain high amounts of polyphenols that are important for bone health . Raisins and dried figs are also high in calcium and polyphenols, making them good sources of calcium as well.
In this article you will find more information about The Fruits Richest in Calcium .
Beans don’t provide a lot of bioavailable calcium because they have a lot of phytic acid. However, if we soak and germinate them, the amount of phytic acid will be significantly reduced and therefore we will get more calcium from them.
When we soak them for cooking, it is advisable to put a splash of apple cider vinegar in the water and this will decompose more phytic acid. You also have to throw away the soaking water (give it to your plants) and cook them in new water.
Like beans, soaking also reduces the phytic acid content in foods like almonds, walnuts, and legumes. Almonds are particularly loaded with calcium (about 378mg per cup !) And soaking them will aid in the absorption of this calcium. Raw food cookbooks have some great ideas for things to make with soaked almonds, like pie crusts and cheese-like spreads.
Amaranth is an ancient grain that contains large amounts of protein, iron, and magnesium. One cup also provides approximately 110mg of calcium . Although there is phytic acid in amaranth grain, soaking and cooking it will lower the levels and help you absorb calcium.
If you need to expand your list of foods, here is this article The Ranking of the Foods Highest in Calcium .
Foods First – Supplements Next
You should try to get your calcium from natural sources. Natural sources of calcium will have co-factors that aid in calcium absorption. You probably already know that vitamin D is important for the absorption of calcium and also magnesium. Not so many people know the importance of vitamin K for bone health. It basically acts like a shuttle and takes calcium where it needs to go. Vitamin K is found in large amounts in green leafy vegetables – one more reason green vegetables are a good source of calcium.
How many types of calcium are there?
Each component has different properties. It is important to know about these to find the right type of calcium for you. All four varieties often share certain characteristics. Some are unique due to the type of production and condition. To make your decision easier, we have compiled information about each type of calcium.
Calcium carbonate is suitable for you if you suffer from iodine deficiency, suffer from excess stomach acid or value the fact of consuming products of natural origin. However, calcium carbonate can also be synthesized by the chemical reaction of calcium ions with carbonate ions. At 40 percent, it contains the highest proportion of calcium of all the varieties . If the amount of gastric acid increases, the calcium carbonate can simply be mixed with a little citric acid.
Calcium citrate, on the other hand, does not contain additional iodine and has a positive effect if too little stomach acid is produced. The body does not need stomach acid for the absorption of calcium citrate. However, it is artificially produced from citric acid. Some of the preparations have a slightly sour taste. At 21 percent , it contains the second highest proportion of pure calcium.
Calcium lactate neutralizes stomach acid and its high solubility, which makes it especially suitable if you suffer from digestive disorders that make it difficult to absorb calcium. It is produced exclusively by the chemical modification of lactic acid. The calcium content in calcium lactate is 12 percent . It is also sometimes used to enrich fruit juices with calcium.
Calcium gluconate is also highly soluble and is often used in medicinal teas. It is produced from gluconic acid in the laboratory. It has a calcium content of 9 percent and is often found together with phosphates and fluorides in preparations that treat osteoporosis.
Kathie Sand always saw the world of beauty as the terrain on which to build her professional career, a goal that was clear to her when she was only 15 years old. Her great concern to expand knowledge led her to settle in Paris where she studied hand in hand with the best beauty professionals and with the most advanced techniques for skin care.