This is Part 3 in my series: 4 Anti Aging Super Nutrients and the foods that contain them…
Calcium is essential to our very existence. Despite the well known benefits and necessity of Calcium, most people get less than half of the daily recommended dosage. Calcium has a laundry list of benefits: Fueling bone growth and strength, lower blood pressure, heart health, cancer prevention, prevention of kidney stones and weight management. These anti aging properties of calcium easily land it in our Super Anti Aging Nutrient list. Adults over 25 need 1000mg of Calcium per day.
When asked what foods contain calcium, most of us list milk, ice cream, cheese, and some fruits and veggies. We all know that we need adequate amounts of calcium in our diet for strong bones and teeth.
Milk: although homogenized and pasteurized milk does have high amounts of this important mineral, it is generally not well absorbed or utilized in the body. The good news is that there are many other great foods high in calcium that are easy to incorporate into your daily diet.
The following list offers you healthy sources of foods high in calcium:
1. Sesame Seeds
These white little seed-wonders are very high in calcium, as well as other important vitamins and minerals. Raw sesame seeds possess almost 1000 mg of calcium per 100g serving.
2. Chia Seeds
Many people are unaware that chia seeds are very high in calcium (as well as the beneficial Omega 3 & 6 fatty acids needed for health). A 3.5 ounce serving can provide about 631mg of calcium.
3. Dark leafy greens
From greens to spinach to kale, getting our calcium from dark green leafy vegetables is an excellent health choice. Spinach ranks very high in calcium, with 291 grams of calcium per cup. A 100g serving of collards packs a 145 mg calcium punch. One cup of steamed bok choy has around 158 mg of the mineral. Kale ranks in with 139mg of calcium and the spicy mustard green has 103mg of calcium per 100g serving.
4. Flax Seeds
Not only high in calcium (256mg per 100g serving), flax seeds are also rich in omega-3 fats. Make sure to use ground or whole flax seeds, as the refined flaxseed oil loses its calcium levels during processing. Flax seeds are a great way to improve your intestinal health.
A light and healthy whole grain, one cup of cooked quinoa offers approximately 60-100 mg of calcium, not to mention a high amount of potassium, zinc and protein.
6. Blackstrap Molasses
This is an excellent sweetener for teas and baked goods. High in multiple vitamins and minerals, one tablespoon of this thick dark molasses will give you 172 mg of your daily calcium needs. Try it in your morning cup of organic tea or coffee.
One cup of freshly-squeezed organic orange juice offers approximately 72 mg of calcium. Not to mention plenty of vitamin c, which will significantly improve the amount of calcium your body absorbs. Besides vitamin c and calcium, oranges are also a great source for potassium, vitamin A and beta carotene.
Many common beans are high in calcium. Winged beans possess 442mg of calcium per 100g serving. Many white beans are very high in calcium. Most white beans have approximately 175mg of calcium per serving. Navy beans are also a great source of calcium, with 127 mg per cup. These beans make an excellent soup base, when our bones most need the support of calcium.
One cup of these green florets offers approximately 74 mg of calcium, along with 120mg of Vitamin C which will help your body absorb the calcium. Broccoli also contains a high amount of vitamin K, vitamin A, folate and dietary fiber.
10. Dried Fruits & Nuts
Many dried fruits are high in calcium. In fact, eating five dried figs per day gives you 135 mg of calcium. Almonds are also extremely high in calcium. Raw, or ground into nut butter, almonds hold 266mg of calcium per 100g.
11. Dried Herbs
Who would have thought that adding dried herbs to your dishes would increase your calcium intake? Dried savory spice holds a whopping 2132mg of calcium per 100g serving. Other dried herbs that are calcium rich include dill, basil, marjoram, thyme, oregano, poppy seed, mint, celery seed, sage, parsley and rosemary.
Other Sources of Calcium
There are many other ways to get calcium in your diet. If you decide to supplement your diet with a high-quality calcium supplement, I would recommend taking calcium orotate.