Everyone’s favourite source of calcium?

What does calcium do?

Calcium is the most abundant mineral in our bodies! 

In fact 2% of our total bodyweight is calcium which is predominantly found in our bones and teeth.

However, calcium does not just keep our bones strong. It is required for blood clotting, release of neurotransmitters, energy production, immune function, muscle contraction and regulation of heartbeat.

Calcium is present in every cell where it regulates reproduction and the manufacture of proteins. 

What is calcium good for?

Calcium has been used therapeutically for relieving symptoms of or preventing:

Anxiety, arthritis, backache, cramps, osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, muscle cramps, hypertension and bone pain.

How much calcium do I need?

The RDA is 800-1400 mg per day.

How do I know I need calcium?

Deficiency in calcium can cause pica which is a craving for non-food things like clay, dirt, paint and paste. 

Low calcium can also cause muscle spasms and leg cramps and hypertension as it constricts blood vessels.Calcium deficiency in children may lead to rickets or osteomalcia in adults.

Things you need to know about calcium

Too much phosphorus found in processed food and soft drinks can cause the body to leach calcium from bones leading to osteoporosis. 

High stomach acid is required to ensure absorption of calcium but this is decreased by antacids, age and stress.

Oxalates found in dark green vegetables and phytates found in grains, nuts and seeds also hinder calcium absorption. 

If you are looking at supplementing then calcium carbonate (chalk) is poorly absorbed- look for calcium citrate which is better tolerated.

Where can I find calcium?

  • Kelp
  • Cheese, yoghurt, milk
  • Salmon and sardines (canned with bones)
  • Spinach, broccoli, mustard greens, collard greens, 
  • Oatmeal, almonds, rhubarb