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Importance Of Calcium In Your Diet

Importance Of Calcium In Your Diet

By Darlene Garcia |February 2021

What is the importance of calcium?

  1. It is a building block for bone health
  2. It is needed for cardiovascular function
  3. It is vital to consume the right amount
  4. It is needed by women
  5. It can be taken from food and supplements

When you were young, most adults would tell you to drink milk because it is good for you. This may be because it contains calcium which you need to grow strong and healthy bones. But now that you’re an adult, you may be wondering if you still need to consume this nutrient. Keep on reading to learn more about the importance of calcium.

It Is A Building Block For Bone Health

As you probably already know, calcium is vital for your bone health. Not having enough supply of calcium will make you lose bone mass — making it weak and brittle. If you don’t have sufficient daily intake, your body will take it from your bones, which puts you at risk for osteoporosis — a condition where your bones become so fragile that even coughing can make it easy to develop a fracture. It can also decrease your height due to changes in posture. 

This is why enough calcium is important as early as childhood. It is used to build bone mass, so you can reach the proper amounts by the peak age of 30. After this, people start to lose calcium and adults need to maintain their daily intake to prevent future problems.

It Is Needed For Cardiovascular Function

Stethoscope over plastic heart

Perhaps not well known to many is calcium’s important role in the cardiovascular system. During each heartbeat, this nutrient enters the heart’s muscle cells. It helps the heart contract, so it can pump blood all around the body. 

Because of this, calcium is essential in regulating blood pressure. But aside from this, it also has a role in the blood clotting process. Also known as coagulation, this prevents your body from losing too much blood when you are wounded. 

It Is Vital To Consume The Right Amount

Calcium deficiency is also called hypocalcemia. Symptoms include memory loss, depression, numbness, muscle cramps, brittle nails, and hallucinations. There are many factors why you don’t take enough calcium from your diet. Some of them are as follows:

  • Malnutrition or not consuming enough calcium from your diet
  • Eating disorders such as anorexia and bulimia 
  • Medical conditions such as Chron’s disease, pancreatitis, and kidney failure
  • Dietary choices such as the vegan lifestyle where animal products such as dairy are not consumed
  • Vitamin D deficiency. This nutrient is needed by your body to absorb calcium.

It is important to consult a doctor if you have the above-mentioned conditions. 

It Is Needed By Women
A woman taking a supplement

Aside from age, sex is also a factor when it comes to customizing your recommended daily intake. The suggested amount for teens is 1,300 mg, then it decreases to 1,000 mg during adulthood. But at the age of 50-70, women start needing 1,200 mg of calcium in their diets. This is 200 mg more than men need in the same age bracket. 

Women experience a rapid drop in estrogen production once they reach menopausal age. Females also have a smaller frame compared to males, which makes their bones thinner. This is why postmenopausal women experience more bone density loss and require more calcium when they reach the age of 50. At 70 and above, both sexes require the same amount of 1,200 mg. 

It Can Be Taken From Food And Supplements

While most of the calcium found in your body is stored in your teeth and bones, you can’t produce this nutrient on your own. Just like most vitamins and minerals, you need to get enough from your diet. But the amount you need will vary with age, and some people do not get enough from their food. To get your recommended daily intake, you can eat the following foods:

  • Milk, cheese, yogurt, and other dairy products
  • Vegetables such as kale, broccoli, okra, Chinese Cabbage, and spinach
  • Fishes where you can consume the bones such as sardines and salmon
  • Fortified food products such as flour, cereal, and juices

Women experiencing menopause, vegans, individuals with high-protein and high-sodium diets are usually prescribed a calcium supplement. Other conditions such as Chron’s Disease may also make it harder for your body to absorb this nutrient.

Key Takeaway

This blog post discussed the importance of calcium for your body. Aside from bone health, it also helps your heart contract so blood is distributed to all your body parts. Deficiency can lead to health problems and one of these is osteoporosis. The recommended daily intake depends on age, but sex is also a factor as women need more when they reach the age of 50. 

Calcium can be taken from food, but not everyone consumes the right amount they need. If you’re interested in a calcium supplement, you can try the Calcium Carbonate 600 mg, which already has 125 IU of vitamin D to help your body absorb this nutrient. Order through the Puritan’s Pride online store to have it delivered to your home. 

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