Adding Calcium to Your Diet

Thursday, Jun 09, 2016
Calcium Diet

How to Get More Calcium

Calcium isn't only for growing kids. Adults need at least 1,000 milligrams of calcium a day to prevent bone density loss, which can lead to osteoporosis.

Luckily, there are plenty of healthy foods that are naturally high in calcium. Here are a few calcium-rich foods

  • Nonfat or low-fat dairy: skim milk, Gruyère, Swiss or part-skim ricotta cheese, plain or fruit yogurt
  • Fortified ready-to-eat cereals: multi-grains with calcium-rich nuts like almonds
  • Leafy vegetables: Kale, broccoli, arugula and collard greens
  • Fish: salmon, perch and sardines
  • Vegan sources:  calcium-fortified tofu, soybeans and bok choy

You Need Vitamin D

Vitamin D increases the absorption of calcium by more than 50 percent, so eat foods that are either fortified with vitamin D or contain it naturally, such as fatty fish. Most adults need between 400 and 1,000 international units (IUs) of vitamin D every day.

If you aren't sure you are getting enough calcium or vitamin D in your diet alone – and most adults don't – talk to your doctor about taking supplements.

Calcium by Numbers: Does Your Diet Add Up?

  • 8 oz of nonfat or low-fat yogurt = 400 mg.
  • 8 oz cup of skim milk = 300 mg
  • 3 oz of canned salmon = 150 mg
  • 1/2 cup of bok choy = 100 mg
  • 1 medium orange = 50 mg

About Doylestown Health's Osteoporosis and Bone Health Program

Doylestown Health's Osteoporosis and Bone Health Program provides evidence-based care for patients who suffer from osteoporosis, low bone density and fragility fractures. The program brings together providers from orthopedics, endocrinology, emergency medicine, gynecology, primary care, rehabilitation therapy, pharmacy, nutrition, pathology and other specialties to provide comprehensive, coordinated care. To find a bone health specialist or learn more, visit osteoporosis and bone health web site or call 215-345-2065.

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