Calcium is essential for bone growth and development. It is critical especially for teenagers and young adults as they are on a bone development phase. It is at that time when the body is achieving its peak in building bone mass. This is why it is extremely important to take foods high in calcium to ensure proper bone growth and get rid of possible problems like osteoporosis as they get older.
1. White Beans
These legumes are great sources of calcium and iron. The best part is that they can be added to a lot of dishes including pasta or other vegetables. You may even create a hummus using only white beans instead of chickpeas. The result is pretty much the same- creamy, light and tasty. Just half a cup of white beans gives you 70mg calcium.
2. Canned Salmon
This is a good way of getting calcium without hurting your pocket since it is affordable. The bones in salmon are major sources of calcium. They are mashed up with the meat so they are almost invisible. The process allows these bones to be broken apart and easily be mixed with the other content of the can. Aside from calcium, it is also rich in omega 3. It is too rich that 3 ounces will already give you up to 200mg of calcium.
3. Bok Choy
This is also referred to as Chinese cabbage. It has tons of health benefits that you will most likely enjoy. This includes Vitamins A, C and calcium. It is also very versatile. You can mix it up with several dishes. Usually, in Chinese cuisines, you will just see this vegetable stir friend in garlic and olive oil. It is then served as a side dish. It is watery and crunchy. It is not bitter unlike other green vegetables, so kids will most likely have fun eating them. Every cup contains 74 mg (7% DV).
4. Blackstrap Molasses
Instead of grabbing an unhealthy dessert as your sweet tooth strikes, why don’t you try this healthy alternative instead? It is filled with calcium, vitamins and iron. It is also perfect as a flavoring for other dishes. You just have to drizzle it on pancakes and you already have a substitute for brown sugar. With just 5 tablespoons of molasses, you get 50% of your RDA.
Who would have thought nuts are actually good sources of calcium? For every ounce, it has 76 mg (8% DV). Almonds are popular and a lot of people love eating it. Now that you know it is a source of calcium, you might want to eat more. The amount of nutrients you will get from almond is packed. You will also benefit from Vitamin E, iron and potassium. You can sprinkle it on your salad or other dishes. If not, try creating your own almond butter.
Obviously, it is a dairy product so it is rich in calcium. In fact, any type of chees is rich in calcium. They just vary in terms of degree. Parmesan is considered the best source as it has 33% DV per ounce while regular cheese only has 22%. Softer cheese options have less calcium. It is also important to note that calcium coming from dairy products can be easily absorbed by the bone compared with other sources, especially plants. Aside from getting calcium, you also increase your metabolism and lower the risk of having heart diseases, and even diabetes.
7. Sesame Seeds
You might not really think of sesame seeds as sources of calcium. They are too tiny and are usually just decorations in a hamburger bun. The truth is that these small seeds can do a lot of positive things to your body. It helps fight certain types of cancer, lower blood pressure and reduce inflammation. It is not usually eaten alone. It is best when paired with salad or a spinach dish. Just sprinkle it on your salad and you are good to go.
We all know seaweed being rich in iron. It helps in the proper functioning of the thyroid. However, aside from iron, it is also a rich source of calcium and fiber. It has 2% DV for every 16.8mg. In fact, fishes are not the only food sources found in the sea. Seaweeds have an acquired taste though, and it might be a bit awkward for you. Just think of all the health benefits you will get and you will surely learn to love it. On your next risotto, top it with seaweed for a unique taste.
This is a rich source of calcium and is branded as a superfood given all the health benefits it offers. It also serves as an antioxidant, which is perfect in getting rid of unwanted elements in the body. When you were younger, you might have been forced to eat kale and you have always been disgusted by it. You are now an adult so you can be more creative in preparing it. Mix it with apricots and avocado and you have an amazing salad. A cup of kale has 24% DV.
Aside from being an excellent source of calcium, it is also rich in probiotic bacteria, which is essential in solving digestive issues. It also has Vitamins B2 and B12, potassium, and phosphorous. If you are afraid of the fats that come with yogurt, try the low-fat option. It is even better as it has higher calcium content, reaching up to 45% in each cup (regular 300mg cup only has 45%). Greek yogurt is also an option. It has less calcium though, but it offers more protein.
You might be surprised to see that not all sources of calcium are dairy products. Some of them can be from plants too. Therefore, you need not worry if you are lactose intolerant. You will see get the nutrition you need through these options.