Calcium Supplements Role: Beyond Bones & Teeth’s Monotonousness

We all know that a complete or balanced diet should include all nutrients: carbohydrates, minerals, antioxidants, high quality proteins, healthy fats and natural vitamins from fruits and vegetables. Lots of people struggle to maintain such type of diet because it demands strict discipline and sheer control on oneself. Fed up from your frantic new year’s resolutions that you make every year in the hope of living a healthy lifestyle? Admit it that you can’t change your eating habits in a day. Actually, it’s not just about the eating habits it’s more like how you usually spend your day. Balanced diet, good rest, exercise, and what I say, drinking plenty of water (no sodas, eh!) are the milestones one should be looking for in his/her daily routine.

However, despite the variety of foods that we have, especially in this part of the world, people don’t practice balanced diet plan for various reasons:

  • Busy lifestyle and hectic schedule

  • Easy availability of processed or canned food

  • Lack of knowledge

  • Or, one of the most commonly heard pretext these days: “I have to cut back on the shopping list”.

  • Lack of variety in the food.

There might be plenty of other excuses as well, but the crux of the matter is how can be so ignorant about such an essential part of our lives. Nowadays, the canned stuff what we call processed food have very low quantity to quality ratio in terms of nutritional value. I’m not exaggerating, and if you don’t believe, here is a brainteaser for you: why half of the population that feed on these processed foods suffers from nutritional deficiencies, irrespective of their overeating habits? For a while, give it a rational thought because that’s where these supplements come into picture. In this section, we will be covering the role of supplements in maintaining healthy lifestyle, calcium supplements, in particular.

Why do I need calcium?

Calcium is crucial for the body and is involved in almost all biological and metabolic functions. A developing baby needs calcium for strong bones and teeth, and keeps the heart, nerves and muscles of the body healthy. Calcium is also necessary to develop a normal heart rate and enhances the blood clotting ability in the body. There are few more remunerations of having a calcium rich diet like it maintains the PH balance, protecting the body from other diseases such as cancer, reduces blood pressure, and maintains the permeability of cell membranes.

Best food sources of calcium

Milk and other dairy products are some of the best calcium rich food sources. Following are some other sources that can provide adequate amount of calcium dosage.

  • 1 cup non-fat yogurt

  • 1 cup non-fat milk

  • 2 cups cottage cheese

  • 1 cup of fortified orange juice

  • 2 slices of bread enriched with calcium

  • 3 oz. of sardines

  • 1 oz. of Gruyere cheese

  • 3 oz. canned salmon

  • 1 oz. Cheddar cheese

  • 4 oz. of firm tofu or soy

  • 3 corn tortillas

  • 1/2 cup turnips

What if we do not get enough calcium?

We need calcium throughout our lives to keep our bones, teeth strong and proper functioning of other body parts. We form the majority of the structure of our body before turning 30 years old. If we do not get enough calcium to strengthen our bones, we will be at risk for osteoporosis as we age. Osteoporosis is a condition in which bone is porous and weak. People with osteoporosis are at high risk of bone fractures. Hence, it’s a serious matter which should be taken care as soon as possible.

Should I take a calcium supplement?

If you still have to think about considering calcium supplements with your diet, you might have not gone through the article thoroughly. But, the answer is yes, definitely. Multivitamins or prenatal vitamins that include at least 150-200 mg of calcium comes under the category of calcium supplements. There are numerous of companies that are making these for years and a normal person can choose any one of them after confirming it from his/her physician or doctor.

Nevertheless, if you are pregnant and have a calcium deficiency, first of all I would suggest you to consume calcium rich diet because it’s the best way you can nurture your child. If you are allergic to some of the calcium rich foods, then you can take natural calcium supplements. The best way to find which supplement will be better is by checking the calcium carbonate label, as it is the type of calcium the body absorbs more easily. Put the supplement in a glass with vinegar and see how long it takes to dissolve. If not dissolved within ten minutes, try another brand. Moreover, avoid tablets that contain lead because in the recent studies it has been found that calcium containing even small amount of lead can be harmful to a developing baby.

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