Plant-based sources of Calcium Pflanzliche Calcium Quellen Las fuentes vegetales de Calcio

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Plant-based sources of Calcium

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Plant-based sources of Calcium

When we think of calcium, we immediately think of dairy as the main source, as well as sardines and egg shells, however, this mineral can also be obtained from plant sources in large doses.

Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body and plays an important role in forming bones and teeth. It also performs other functions, such as ensuring proper heart function, relieving muscle aches and is essential in regulating the nervous system. Most calcium is found in bones and teeth, and about 20 % is systematically replaced every year.

An adult should consume around 800 milligrams of calcium, whereas in children and pregnant women, amounts are nearer a 1200 mg dose, the same dose is recommended for elderly people who are under stress or going through menopause.

Calcium absorption

For this mineral to be absorbed properly, you need to consume it along with other nutrients. To maintain balance in the body, you must eat two parts calcium to one part magnesium and phosphorus respectively.

Some vitamins such as C and D are essential for improving the absorption of calcium. Although vitamin D is generated by exposure to the sun, you also have to consider other natural sources such as margarine, eggs, cereal, etc.

Elements involved in the absorption of calcium

Although the nutrients mentioned above help to improve the absorption of calcium, there are some nutrients or substances which prevent or limit absorption.

Fibre: This food element can prevent the proper absorption of Calcium. For those who have special needs for this mineral (due to illness or otherwise), it is recommended not to eat an amount greater than 18 grams of fibre a day.

Diuretics: Both diuretic foods as well as medications which exert this function may promote loss of minerals such as calcium, because not only do they help to remove liquids but also salts. It is therefore important to keep this in mind if you are ingesting a product or food which may produce a diuretic effect.

Caffeine: This stimulant reduces bodily absorption of calcium and also increases its loss. Whether tea, coffee, soda, or any product containing caffeine, it can negatively affect the calcium levels in our body.

Antibiotics and Antacids: These usually adversely affect the absorption of calcium and, in addition, there are also antibiotics that contain aluminum, a mineral that affects bone mineralisation.

Calcium is considered an alkaline substance, therefore, acidic compounds are regarded as "thieves" of this mineral. Some acidic substances are maté, coffee, tea, chocolate, soft drinks and refined sugars.

Plant-based sources of calcium

There are many plant-based sources of calcium that can be considered within our reach. The list below illustrates the number of milligrams of calcium is contained per 100 grams of this food:

Brewer's yeast: 232 milligrams

Almonds: 282 milligrams

Agar-Agar: 400 milligrams

Lime flower: 663 milligrams

Sunflower Seeds: 868 milligrams

Pumpkin Seeds: 1,064 milligrams

Sesame seeds: 1,160 milligrams

Hiziki Algae: 1,400 milligrams

Poppy seeds: 1,500 milligrams

Other plant-based calcium sources include kombu, nori and arame seaweeds, as well as vegetables such as turnips, broccoli, cabbage, chard, celery, fennel and spinach.

Legumes are also a great vegetable-based source of calcium, especially soy beans and their derivatives, eg. tofu.

Cereals generally provide calcium, as well as nuts such as hazelnuts and almonds.

Finally it should be mentioned that some plants like oregano, dandelion and mustard also contain sources of calcium.

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5 Reviews about Plant-based sources of Calcium
on 09/03/2016
It is strange to think that us human beings are the only mammals on earth who drink the milk of other mammal species... When you think about it like that, it actually seems quite unnatural although it is a pretty accepted norm all over the world in order to obtain sources of calcium. This article provides a succinct and helpful list of plant-based calcium that no doubt has just the same nutritive effect.
on 08/08/2014
After watching the documentary "Forks over Knives", I really began to question whether or not this idea of consuming cow's milk for it's calcium content was bogus or not. I've done some more research, and it turns out the drinking cow's milk is actually linked to HIGHER levels of osteoporosis and other degenerative bone diseases, so... It only makes sense to look for vegetable sources of calcium. Nature's way.
on 05/10/2013
The list is pretty helpful, this is perfect to change the diet especially of children that are who need more and more calcium for their proper growth and well all the people need to keep the levels of calcium, and doing it with vegetables sources is a lot way healthier than other options and can be very fun and varied too
on 24/09/2013
I tend to drink a lot of coffee and I was just wondering if this can affect me really bad, for example, when I get old, and probably this statement is true as I have read in this article, then the calcium in my bones will be seriously damaged and maybe it is too laet to do something so now I am going to reduce my consumption of coffee for at least one cup per day
on 24/09/2013
It is so good to find a good list of different calcium sources, this important ingredient in our life can make the difference when we are old and need strong bones to keep on going, so when you are very young you should start to include more foods like those.

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