Calcium for Health (01)
Calcium and Vitamin D Information on NIAMS.NIH.gov
This publication by the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) contains information about calcium and vitamin D. This includes the recommended calcium intakes (in milligrams) according to age, and a list of selected calcium-rich foods. For calcium supplements, they are better absorbed when taken in small doses (500 mg or less) several times throughout the day. For many individuals, calcium supplements are better absorbed when taken with food. However, the NIAMS warns that excessive amounts of calcium can potentially increase calcium excretion through the kidneys. The article also reminds everyone about the other techniques of preventing and treating osteoporosis.
From Dr. Weil: Will Calcium Supplements Create Kidney Stones?
This is a useful question and answer on the Dr. Weil health site. It explains the interaction between calcium and kidney stones, and says it is OK to take a calcium supplement as long as they are taken with lunch and dinner and some other dietary suggestions are followed. The site states that calcium supplements and foods high in calcium don't cause kidney stones-"Researchers believe that calcium from food binds with oxalate in the intestine which cannot absorb the combination. The calcium oxalate then is eliminated with fecal matter. This lowers the amount of calcium and oxalate your body otherwise would have to eliminate in urine and prevents crystallization of calcium oxalate in the kidneys," the site says. Very informative information on calcium and kidney stones here.
Osteoporosis Center: The Importance of Calcium and Calcium Rich Foods
Calcium is vital for bone health, so taking calcium supplements makes sense for those who don't eat a calcium-rich diet. This page includes information on how important physical activity is for bones, how to avoid osteoporosis and how to maintain bone strength, as well as treatment for osteoporosis and bone formation with calcium food sources. Calcium can be found in calcium rich foods and calcium supplements, so it's not that difficult to make sure you get calcium in your diet.
Get Calcium: Health Tip from Bastyr University
Calcium is a nutrient essential for healthy bones, muscle contractions, and the proper functioning of the nervous system. This article discusses two sources of calcium and explains why one source is better than the other. Calcium is present in dairy foods, dark green leafy vegetables, tofu, almonds and other plant-based foods. One can also find calcium in supplements, which are available for those whose diets lack calcium-rich foods. There are two forms of calcium supplements: calcium carbonate, which is the cheaper of the two, and calcium citrate, which is more expensive but is more readily absorbed by the body.
Do Children's Calcium Supplements Really Work
This article describes 19 studies that were reviewed to determine if children's calcium supplements really work. The studies tested 2859 children from three to 18 and compared children who took calcium supplements to children who took placebos (or fake pills) for 8 1/2 months to seven years. The calcium supplements provided 300 to 1200 mg of calcium as calcium carbonate or phosphate, calcium citrate malate, calcium lactate gluconate or calcium from milk minerals or extracts. Interestingly enough, the studies found that bone mineral density increased the same amount in the hip and spine whether children took calcium supplements or placebos, but it did increase the bone mineral density in the arm. Overall, calcium nutrition is vital and taking a children's calcium supplement and eating calcium rich foods is a must-do.
Is Calcium a Bust for Bones
This article on WebMD discusses the benefits of Vitamin D and calcium supplements and notes that women won't get the full benefits of the Vitamin D and calcium nutrition without taking Vitamin D and calcium supplements regularly. The article discusses a study published in The New England Journal of Medicine. The study reported that women who took Vitamin D and calcium supplements twice daily were 29 percent less likely to fracture their hips than those who took placebos. This proves that the benefit of calcium supplements and Vitamin D are very useful for maintaining strong bone health.