calcium is an essential element needed in large quantities. The calcium ion acts as an electrolytes and is vital the health of the muscular,circulatory,and digestive system,is indispensable to the building of bone and supports synthesis and function of blood cells.
calcium is the most abundant mineral in body.and almost 99% of the body’s calcium is stored in the structure of the bones and the teeth.
A deficiency in calcium can lead to numberless in fingers and toes,muscle cramps, convulsion, lethargy, loss f appetite, and abnormal heart rhythms. conversely, excess calcium can lead to kidney stones, calcification of soft tissue, and increased risk of vascular diseases like stroke and heart attack.
How Much Calcium Per Day You Need and Depends On Your Age?
average daily recommended amounts are listed below in milligrams (mg):
- Birth to 6 months : 200 mg
- Infants 7-12 months : 260 mg
- Children 1-3 years : 700 mg
- Children 4-8 years : 1,000 mg
- Children 9-13 years : 1,300 mg
- Teens 14-18 years : 1,300 mg
- Adults 19-50 years : 1,000 mg
- Adult men 51-70 years : 1,000 mg
- Adult women 51-70 years : 1,200 mg
- Adults 71 years and older : 1,200 mg
- Pregnant and breastfeeding teens : 1,300 mg
Calcium Deficiency disease (Hypocalcemia)
When you don’t get enough calcium, you increase your risk of developing disorders like:
- calcium deficiency disease (hypocalcemia)
What causes hypocalcemia ?
- poor calcium intake over a long period of time, especially in childhood
- medications that may decrease calcium absorption
- hormonal changes, especially in women
- dietary intolerance to foods rich in calcium
- certain genetic factors
Women need to increase their calcium intake earlier in life than men, starting in middle age. Meeting the necessary calcium requirement is particularly important as a woman approaches menopause.During menopause, women should also increase their calcium intake to reduce the risk of osteoporosis and calcium deficiency disease. The decline in the hormone estrogen during menopause causes a woman’s bones to thin faster.
The hormone disorder hypoparathyroidism may also cause calcium deficiency disease. People with this condition don’t produce enough parathyroid hormone, which controls calcium levels in the blood.
Other causes of hypocalcemia include malnutrition and malabsorption. Malnutrition is when you’re not getting enough nutrients, while malabsorption is when your body can’t absorb the vitamins and minerals you need from the food you eat. Additional causes include:
- low levels of vitamin D, which makes it harder to absorb calcium
- hypermagnesemia and hypomagnesemia
- medication, such phenytoin, phenobarbital, rifampin, corticosteroids, and drugs used to treat elevated calcium levels
- septic shock
- massive blood transfusion
- renal failure
- certain chemotherapy drugs
- ”hungry bone syndrome,” which may occur after surgery for hyperparathyrodism
- removal of parathyroid gland tissue as per of surgery to remove the thyroid gland
If you miss your daily dose of calcium, you won’t become calcium deficient overnight. But it’s still important to make an effort to get enough calcium every day, since the body uses it quickly. vegans are more likely to become calcium deficient quickly because they don’t eat calcium-rich dairy products.
Symptoms of hypocalcemia
Early stage calcium deficiency may not cause any symptoms. However, symptoms will develop as the condition progresses.
- confusion or memory loss
- muscle spasms
- numbness and tingling in the hands,feet, and face
- muscle cramps
- weak and brittle nails
- easy fracturing of the bones
How’s calcium deficiency disease diagnosed?
Contact your doctor if you have symptoms of calcium deficiency disease. They’ll review your medical history and ask you about family history of calcium deficiency and osteoporosis.If your doctor suspects calcium deficiency, they’ll take a blood sample to check your blood calcium level. Your doctor will measure your total calcium level, your albumin level, and your ionized or “free” calcium level. Albumin is a protein that binds to calcium and transports it through the blood. Sustained low calcium levels in your blood may confirm a diagnosis of calcium deficiency disease.Normal calcium levels for adults can range from 8.8 to 10.4 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dL), according to the Merck manual. You may be at risk for calcium deficiency disease if your calcium level is below 8.8 mg/dL. Children and teens typically have higher blood calcium levels than adults.
How’s calcium deficiency disease treated ?
Calcium deficiency is usually easy to treat. It typically involves adding more calcium to your diet.Do not self-treat by taking a lot of calcium supplements. Taking more than the recommended dose without your doctor’s approval can lead to serious issues like kidney stones.Commonly recommended calcium supplements include:
- calcium carbonate, which is the least expensive and has the most elemental calcium
- calcium cit-rate, which is the most easily absorbed
- calcium phosphate, which is also easily absorbed and doesn’t cause constipation
calcium supplements are available in liquid, tablet, and chew-able forms.
Top 10 Foods High in Calcium
After knowing the effects of Calcium deficiency it’s important to get rid of them, for this follow the list below of calcium food sources. These list of foods that contain calcium are great choice to add in your daily diet to improve your calcium intake and be healthy.
1 Cup : 280 mg of calcium when we think about calcium, the first source that comes to our mind is milk. Easily digestible and absorbable , milk is one of the best high calcium foods. An amazing vehicle for building bones from childhood to adulthood, a cup of milk includes 280 mg of calcium of the recommended 1000 mg. Hence it is one of the good sources of calcium.
1 orange : 60 mg of calcium We all know orange helps in boosting our immune system. And this magical fruit is also in the list of high calcium foods with vitamin d rich foods category. Which is crucial for absorption of calcium in the body. One medium size of orange contains 60 mg of calcium and it’s considered as best source of calcium.
1 cup : 569 mg of calcium Listed in the foods rich in calcium, sardines are a great option. If you are a non-vegetarian, It is just what you need. These little salty fishes are good sources of calcium and can add an amazing Umami flavor to pastas and salads.
4. Soy milk
1 cup : 60 mg of calcium It’s a myth that only dairy products contain calcium. Non-dairy products like fortified soy milk can be amazing high calcium foods and provide both calcium and vitamin D.
1 cup ( roasted) : 457 mg of calcium with a stupendous 457 mg of calcium, almonds top the list of high calcium foods. It is high on proteins as well, these nuts also helps in reducing the risk of heart disease. Also, almonds are an amazing source for improving your memory. Having some of these protein rich nuts every morning will be a sure win-win for your health.
6. Bok Choy
1 cup : 74 mg of calcium every non-dairy best source of calcium and calcium rich foods list is incomplete without this leafy vegetable called bok choy. Also called as Chinese cabbage, Loaded with vitamins like A and C, it is easy to cook and is available all around the year.
1 cup(dried) : 242 mg of calcium indulge in this sweet dessert-like fruit loaded with fiber and potassium. with a whopping 242 mg of calcium per 1 cup of dried fig, this sticky fruit helps in strengthening your bones. Also loaded with magnesium, this fruit helps in keeping the heart beat steady and maintaining muscle function. It stands a strong position in the list of foods rich in calcium
1 serving : 400 mg of calcium available in various flavors, yogurt is a dairy products with contains healthy bacteria for your gut and it’s one of the foods high in calcium. With 400 mg of calcium in a single serving , this protein-rich diet is amazing substitute to milk.
1 cup(diced) : 951 mg of calcium another addition to the list of foods rich in calcium, cheese is a great source of protein as well as one of the best foods that contain calcium. A must have ingredient for a variety of snacks, consumption of cheese is as easy as pie.
10. Green leafy vegetables
1 bunch : 336 mg of calcium high in dietary fiber, green leafy vegetables are one of the foods high in calcium. With a number of options like spinach, kale, celery and broccoli, these veggies are also rich potassium and magnesium.
Calcium Benefits in daily Lifestyle
- maintaining a healthy body weight
- exercising regularly
- restricting tobacco use and alcohol intake