We all heard it when we were growing up, “Drink your milk so that you can have strong bones and teeth.”
As we grew up, we substituted whole milk for skimmed in an effort to cut down on fat, but…
did you know that there’s evidence that calcium deficiency can slow down your metabolism?
healthy calcium levels can speed up your weight loss.
A study conducted by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that dieters who had the highest intake of calcium from dairy lost 60 percent more weight than those with the lowest. Obese women who raised their daily intake of calcium from 600 mg to 1,200 lost average of 11 pounds more than those who maintained their calcium intake.
Calcium is considered an essential nutrient and cannot be produced by the body. It is therefore important that you eat calcium rich foods in order to absorb the 1200mg daily requirement.
Calcium at different stages in life
Childhood and adolescence – calcium is vital in building and developing the skeleton and teeth.
Adulthood – calcium helps to maintain bone strength. We lose calcium in our bones as we age which can lead to oseoperosis. It’s essential, especially for women, to eat at least 3 servings of calcium rich foods per day.
During Pregnancy – calcium needs are higher During pregnancy and breast-feeding to ensure the proper development of the foetus and new born child.
Calcium is not only essential for your bones and teeth, but is also critical for muscle function and the transmission of signals to the nerves. Recent studies have also suggested that calcium assists with lowering cholesterol.
Your body can’t make its own calcium, so it’s essential that you take in 1,200 mg a day through your diet. In fact, if you don’t take enough of the mineral, your body may begin to release calcitriol, a hormone that promotes fat storage. To meet your calcium needs, look for foods that have at least 200 mg listed on the label; work them into your diet every day.
Top Sources Of Calcium
Low-fat plain yogurt (8 ounces): 452 mg
40g cheddar cheese – 310mg
1 cup milk – 310mg
Spinach (1 cup cooked) – 291 mg
Black-eyed peas (1 cup cooked) – 211 mg
60g (1/2 small tin) canned sardines (bones included) – 200mg
¼ cup raw almonds – 70mg
½ cup baked beans, canned in tomato sauce – 50mg
1 cup of broccoli – 30mg