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Calcium Consumate August 31, 2009

Posted by paripl110707 in Uncategorized.
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Putting backbone into your bones with nutrition’s other “Big C”.

Now we know we mom always told us to drink our milk: Calcium, the mineral found in a glass of milk (290 mg), is also the mineral most needed by the human body. Besides building and maintaining good strong teeth, calcium helps regulate the heart’s normal functions, and is essential in coagulation, acid-base balance, muscle growth and contraction, nerve impulse transmission, and the passage of nutrients through cell walls.

Calcium is also crucial for optimum bone health. Children raised on a diet rich in this mineral not only strengthen their still growing bones till their teens, they also prevent the onset of osteporosis. A condition wherein the bones as so brittle, they break at the slightest impact, osteoporosis affects women after age 35 (the time when bone mass reaches its peak and begins to thin back) in the seventh and eight decade of life.

Athletes who adhere to intense training programs are also susceptible to this disease, as are people who smoke, drink and eat meat, sugar and salt in great excess. While sugar and sodium increase calcium exertion, too much alcohol and the preservatives in canned sodas stimulate bone breakdown, and cigarettes and excessive protein inhibit proper calcium absorption. At least 1,000 milligrams of calcium a day—2oo mg to 500 mg more if you’re teens, are pregnant, or are lactating—reduces, if not eliminates altogether, the chances of developing osteoporosis. Excellent sources of calcium includes low-fat milk, dairy products, calcium-fortified fruit juices, beans, cauliflower, oranges, eggs, tofu, dark leafy vegetables like broccoli and spinach, and sardines, salmon, and other seafood that you can eat in their entirely (i.e., including the head and the bones.) Vitamin D aids in the proper absorption of the mineral, and weight-bearing exercise like running or tennis ensure that you’ll be walking tall and proud—an osteoporosis-free!—in the years to come.