Calcium – Good for Bones and More

Why is calcium so important?

calcium

 You need your bones to grow and you want them to be strong in order to support the height you will gain with Super-Growth, for years and years to come. Calcium is what will make it happen.

Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body and is found mostly in your bones, where it gives them strength. The body does not produce calcium, which means that you must get it from your daily diet. That’s why a diet rich in calcium is so important, particularly when bones are growing and developing. Even after full bone development, you still need an adequate calcium intake throughout your life to keep your bones strong and healthy.

Apart from giving strength to your bones, calcium is necessary for many body functions. Practically every cell in your body, including those in your heart, nerves and muscles, relies on calcium.

In order for your body to function properly, the level of calcium in the blood must stay relatively constant. For this to happen, you need to consume enough calcium throughout the day. Otherwise, your blood will “steal” calcium from your bones to maintain the level it requires. Think of your bones as a “bank”. If your diet is low in calcium, your blood “withdraws” the calcium it needs from your bones. When your diet is rich in calcium, you make “deposits” in your calcium “bank”. Over time, if your withdraws exceed your deposits, your bones can begin to weaken and become more susceptible to breaking.

Smoking, alcohol, and caffeine have a negative impact on bone health, especially if your calcium intake is low.

Provided you consume enough calcium, your bones will continue to grow denser until around the age of 30. After that, calcium remains a priority, because you need to maintain your bone mass to minimize gradual loss associated with aging. As you get older, you tend to shrink (especially women). This tendency can be prevented through sufficient calcium intake.

Your bones need regular physical activity to maintain their strength. Exercise helps your body store calcium in the bones, so that the calcium you get from your diet is used more efficiently.

Daily calcium requirements:

Age (Years)

Calcium (Mg)

1-3

4-8

9-18

19-50

50+

550

800

1,300

1,000

1,200

Calcium Content in All Food Products

X = Source of calcium

XX = Good source of calcium

XXX = Excellent source of calcium

Calcium Content of Milk Products

Food

Serving

Calcium (Mg)

Rating

Brie cheese

Buttermilk

Camembert cheese

Cheese, firm such as

Cottage cheese, creamed, 1%. 2%

Feta cheese

Ice cream

Ice milk

Milk, whole, 2%

1%, skim milk, chocolate

Milk, fortified

Milk, powder, dry

Mozzarella cheese

Mozzarella cheese partly skimmed

Parmesan cheese, grated

Processed cheese slices:

2 thin slices, 2 thick slices

Processed cheese spread

Ricotta cheese

Ricotta cheese, partly skimmed

Swiss cheese

Yogurt drink, yogurt frozen

Yogurt, fruit – flavor, yogurt plain

Yogurt, fortified fruit – flavor

Yogurt, fortified plain

50g

250ml (1 cup)

50g

50g

125ml (½ cup)

50g

175ml (¾ cup)

125ml (½ cup)

250ml (1 cup)

250ml (1 cup)

250ml (1 cup)

90ml (6 Tbsp.)

50g

50g

45ml (3 Tbsp.)

42g, 62g

45ml (3 Tbsp.)

60ml (¼ cup)

60ml (¼ cup)

50g

175g, 125ml (1/2 cup)

175ml (¾ cup) both

175ml (¾ cup)

175ml (¾ cup)

92

301

193

350

87

254

140

109

315

300

420

318

269

366

262

256, 384

252

103

136

480

186, 147

259, 292

344

388

X

XXX

XX

XXX

X

XX

X

X

XXX

XXX

XXX

XXX

XX

XXX

XX

XX, XXX

XX

X

X

XXX

X, X

XX, XXX

XXX

XXX

Calcium Content of Some Combination Foods Made with Milk Products

Food

Serving

Calcium (Mg)

Rating

Baked custard

Cheese pizza

Chicken a la King

Custard pie

Lasagna

Macaroni and cheese (homemade)

Milkshake

Pancakes made with milk

Pudding, vanilla, chocolate

Quiche Lorraine

Rice pudding

Soups made with milk such as cream of broccoli, chicken, mushroom, tomato

125ml (½ cup)

¼ of a large

250ml (1 cup)

1/6 of a pie

250ml (1 cup)

250ml (1 cup)

10 oz.

3 medium

125ml (½ cup)

1/6 of a pie

125ml (½ cup)

250ml (1 cup)

157

296

135

146

286

383

332

179

140

336

137

189

X

XXX

X

X

XXX

XXX

XXX

XX

X

XXX

X

XX

Calcium Content of Other Common Foods

Milk – 250ml = 315mg calcium

Firm Cheese – 50g = 350mg calcium

Yogurt – 175ml = 275mg calcium

See how milk products compare to these foods:

Food

Serving

Calcium (Mg)

Rating

Almonds

Baked Beans

Beet greens, cooked

Brazil nuts

Bread, whole wheat or white

Broccoli, cooked

Cauliflower, cooked

Chickpeas, cooked

Chili con carne

Dates

Figs, dried

Kale, cooked

Lentils, cooked

Nuts, mixed

Orange

Prunes, dried, uncooked

Raisins

Red kidney beans, cooked

Rhubarb, cooked

Rice, white or brown, cooked

Rice drink (fortified)

Salmon, pink, canned, canned w/ bones

Sardines, canned with bones

Sesame seeds

Shrimps, cooked, canned

Soybeans, cooked

Soy drink

Soy drink (fortified)

Spinach, cooked

White beans, cooked

125ml (½ cup)

250ml (1 cup)

125ml (½ cup)

125ml (½ cup)

1 slice

125ml (½ cup)

125ml (½ cup)

250ml (1 cup)

250ml (1 cup)

60ml (¼ cup)

4 medium

125ml (½ cup)

250ml (1 cup)

125ml (½ cup)

1 medium

60ml (¼ cup)

60ml (¼ cup)

250ml (1 cup)

125ml (½ cup)

125ml (½ cup)

250ml (1 cup)

½ – 213 g can

½ – 213 g can

125ml (½ cup)

70g (12 large)

125 (½ cup)

250ml (1 cup)

250ml (1 cup)

125 (½ cup)

250ml (1 cup)

200

163

87

130

25

38

18

84

66

12

61

103

40

48

52

18

21

52

184

12

300

225

210

104

41

93

28

300

129

170

XX

XX

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

X

XX

XXX

XX

XX

X

X

XXX

X

XX

How to Calculate a Serving

Eating milk products is your best guarantee of getting the calcium you need every day, along with other important nutrients. How many milk products you should eat depends on where you are in your life cycle.

Children aged 4 – 9 years = 2 – 3 servings/day

Youth aged 10 – 16 years = 3 – 4 servings/day

Adults aged 17 and older = 2 – 4 servings/day

What is a Serving?

One serving of milk products contains at least 275 mg of calcium. Not all milk products contain the same amount of calcium. That is why a normal helping of some milk products might give you only ¼, 1/3 or ½ serving as shown below:

1 serving = 250 ml (1 cup) milk

50 g (1” x 1” x 3”) firm cheese

2 slices processed cheese

175 g (¾ cup) yogurt

45 ml (3 Tbsp.) Parmesan cheese

½ serving = 175 ml (¾ cup) ice cream.

125 ml (½ cup) frozen yogurt or ice milk

1/3 serving = 60 ml (¼ cup) ricotta cheese

¼ serving = 125 ml (½ cup) Cottage cheese

There are a lot or good things to say about calcium, but calcium is not so powerful without its “partner” – vitamin D, which enables calcium to build strong bones. Foods rich in vitamin D are fatty fish; milk fortified with vitamin D, and fortified breakfast cereals. Vitamin D can be also manufactured by our bodies from sunlight. The amount of sun exposure needed to produce vitamin D varies with an individual’s skin color and age.

Typically, from 10 minutes to 1½ hours is needed for the body to produce enough vitamin D to reach the fill potential of this “teamwork”. This is one of the reasons why some young people increase their height incredibly during summer time. I want to warn you, however, it can be very dangerous to expose yourself to the sun for long periods of time, because you may get sunburn, heat stroke or worse.

So keep in mind – a game of volleyball on the beach may help your bones to grow! 

 www.super-growth.com

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