The Top 10 Foods High in Calcium

The Top 10 Foods High in Calcium

Why calcium is needed?

Calcium is a very important mineral for the human body.

Calcium is needed for:
  • maintaining bone health (calcium helps reduce the risk of fractures, osteoporosis, and diabetes);
  • contraction and relaxation of blood vessels;
  • muscle contractions;
  • transmission of nerve impulses;
  • hormone secretion.

Adults need to consume 1 000 mg of calcium per day, and elderly people —  200 mg per day.

However consume this substance and absorb it —  is not the same thing. Calcium metabolism occurs with the participation of other nutrients: protein and vitamin D. Without them, you can suffer from calcium deficiency, even formally covering its rate.

How is calcium absorbed?

Calcium is absorbed in the intestine: it enters the cells, passes through them and is released into the blood. Calcitrio l— an active form of vitamin D helps him along the way. It increases the penetration of calcium into the cells of the intestine, accelerates its transfer and release.

For turning vitamin D  into calcitriol, it needed 1 insulin-like growth factor, and its production requires protein. The study showed that a triple increase in the amount of protein in the diet (up to 2.1 g per 1 kg of weight) increases the absorption of calcium in the intestine by 8%.

Thus, along with calcium, you should consume enough protein, and also choose foods rich in vitamin D.

Calcium, mg per dayProtein, g per dayVitamin D, mcg per day
1000–120065–117 for men
58–87 for women

Well-Absorbed Calcium-Rich Foods

Many people think that the greatest amount of calcium is in cottage cheese, but this is not so. Here are some products that surpass it in this indicator...

1. Eggshell Eggshell

One eggshell contains 2 g of calcium. It weighs about 5 g and in a crushed state is placed in one teaspoon.

½ a teaspoon of crushed eggshell covers the daily need for dietary (i.e. consumed with food) calcium. For comparison: curd would take 1.2 kg

At the same time, due to the content of soluble matrix proteins, shell calcium is perfectly absorbed by the body.

To prepare the powder, wash the shell well. Then boil it for 5 minutes to kill possible bacteria, dry and grind it in a coffee grinder to a state of flour. Use by ½ teaspoon per day, for example, add to ready-made meals.

2. Parmesan and other cheeses Parmesan

Parmesan cheese is a leader of the amount of calcium among all dairy products. 100 g of product contains 1 184 mg calcium — more than the daily norm. At the same time, there is a lot of protein in it (38 g per 100 g of product) and 0.95 mcg of vitamin D.

Other cheeses also contain a lot of calcium and substances important for its absorption. For example, 100 g Dutch, Poshekhonsky, Swiss cheeses contain 1 000 mg calcium 24–26 g protein and 0.8–one mcg of vitamin D.

Thus eating 100 g of cheese per day, you completely cover your need for dietary calcium and get a tenth of the daily intake of vitamin D.

However, you must remember that cheese — it is a fairly high-calorie product rich in saturated fats. If you eat 100 g of cheese per day, it is better to refuse other fatty foods. There is good news for fat lovers: the more calcium you consume, the less fat is absorbed.

So if you want to consume more calcium and protein, do not go past the cheese — it's a great source of healthy nutrients.

3. SesameSesame

Sesame — the absolute leader in the amount of calcium among plant sources. At 100 g of these little seeds contains 975 mg calcium and 17.7 g protein.

True, there are pitfalls here. Firstly, no one eats sesame by itself. Most often it is added to pastries and other dishes, which means that consuming 100 or even 50g per day will be problematic.

Of course, you can make a halva from sesame seeds, then you can eat more seeds at a time, but such foods usually contain a lot of sugar and calories, and this is not very useful.

The second pitfall of sesame, like most other plant sources of calcium, — phytic acid. It is an antinutrient that reduces the absorption of calcium and other minerals. Phytic acid is 1–5% by weight of grains, legumes, oilseeds, and nuts.

Fortunately, you can cope with the negative effects of phytates by treating foods before use. Soak the sesame in water for 4 hours, and then lightly fry.

4. Sardines in Oil Sardines in Oil

Canned sardines are consumed with bones, so they have a lot of calcium: 382 mg per 100 g of product. They also contain 24.6 g protein and 6.8 mcg of vitamin D (68% from the daily norm). And although calcium in sardines is much less than in the same sesame, due to vitamin D it will be absorbed better.

Also in 100 g of sardines, preserved in oil, total 208 kcal and 11.5 g fat, half of which — polyunsaturated. Therefore, you can safely eat 100–150 g per day, with not giving up other products and do not risk your figure.

5. Almonds Almonds

100 g almond contains 216 mg of calcium and 21.9 g protein. This nut contains a lot of phytic acids, but you can reduce it by soaking the almonds by 12 hours before use.

And do not eat too much: a small handful of almonds, which you easily eat in five minutes, contains about 250 kcal.

6. Garlic Garlic

100 g of garlic contains 181 mg calcium and 6.4 g protein. If you like garlic, often add it to dishes and snacks: it reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease, has antitumor and antimicrobial effects, and helps normalize glucose levels...

7. ParsleyParsley

100 g parsley contains 138 mg of calcium and 3 g protein. Of course, few people can eat a large bunch of this green, but you can often add it to dishes.

Also 100 g parsley contains 133 mg of vitamin C, which neutralizes phytic acid. You can add greens to every bean salad or dish to help the body neutralize the effects of phytates...

8. Milk Milk

 100 g of milk contains 120 mg calcium and 3.3 g protein. Calcium from milk is well absorbed due to lactose, and protein has the highest absorption rate possible — 1,0.

Milk is rich in saturated fats, so if you have high cholesterol, choose low-fat milk. Also make sure that you have no lactose intolerance: people with a deficiency in the lactase enzyme will not get the benefits of calcium absorption and will have digestion problems.

9. Hazelnuts Hazelnuts

At 100 g hazelnuts contained 114 mg calcium, 15 g protein, and 628 kcal, so if you do not count calories, do not eat more than a handful of these nuts per day.

10. Soy

Soy100 g of boiled soybeans contains 102 mg calcium and 16.6 g protein. Phytic acid in soy does not greatly affect calcium absorption. Soak up even a slight effect, soak soy at night.