Calcium is an important mineral which improves bone health, muscle function, nerve transmission, and hormone secretion. Because it is necessary for so many significant functions, we need lots of it. Most adults (ages 19-50) require 1,000 mg daily while women over 50 need 1,200 mg daily. A lack of calcium can result in a variety of health problems, including osteoporosis.
If you’re not getting enough calcium, your first instinct may be to drink more milk. Milk (offering about 300 mg of calcium per 8 ounces), along with other dairy foods, are excellent sources for calcium. However, if you dislike dairy or have trouble digesting it, you will need to find other sources. Luckily, these calcium-rich foods are great alternatives.
You can get 320 mg of calcium from a ¾ cup serving of almonds. Aside from calcium, you also get a great source of fiber and vitamin E. Have them as a snack during the day, or swap your peanut butter for almond butter.
1½ cups of dried figs will supply you with 362 mg of calcium. Because of their sweet flavor, you can slice them up and add them to anything from oatmeal to yogurt to salads.
You can obviously enjoy kale raw, however, the calcium content is heightened when cooked. Two cups of cooked kale will provide you with 359 mg of calcium. Enjoy it as a side or incorporate it into your favorite cooked dishes.
Canned Salmon – With Bones
Usually when eating fish, it’s best to avoid the bones. However, the canning process softens fish bones so they are nearly impossible to detect. A mere 6 ounces of canned salmon with the bones provides you with 366 mg of calcium and 930 IU of vitamin D. Dress it to your liking and use it as a salad topper, or add it to pasta or rice bowls.
In order to curdle soymilk, some companies use calcium sulfate, which results in tofu’s firm texture, but also added calcium content. Typically, firm or extra firm tofu provides 300 mg of calcium per 6 ounce serving. Keep in mind that soft/silken tofu requires less calcium sulfate, and will typically have less calcium than firm tofu.
A two cup serving of this Chinese cabbage offers 316 mg of calcium. Choose regular or baby bok choy, chop it up and add to a stir fry or even try it roasted.
Calcium-fortified Orange Juice
Eight ounces will provide you with 350 mg of calcium, just be sure to shake it first – the calcium can settle at the bottom. Other calcium-fortified foods, like cereals, can help to supplement your intake.
Enjoy a delicious breakfast or yummy lunch at the Brick Your Neighborhood Deli 6 days a week. You can find us on the northeast corner of East Arrow Highway and Garey Avenue. Check out our menu online and call 909-596-5225 if you have any questions.