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Kids Health and How much Calcium Do They Need?

Updated on February 9, 2013
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Barbara worked at Thomas Hospital Home Health and is certified for home health from ANCC. She received her MSN from Mobile University, AL.

What is calcium?

"Calcium is the fifth most abundant element n the earth’s crust!" It is Ca, it is the stuff that holds our bones at their peak of strength, and it is the material made up in our bones and teeth. It is the first to come and the first to leave. By the time, we are eighteen we have all the calcium our body will provide!

It is imperative that we start adding and instructing our children on the importance of calcium in their diet from their earliest years! We dont want to nag but we do want to remind them that their bones and teeth are so important we need to help them be as strong as possible!

Thank goodness, for Sesame Street and all the other PBS shows as they often have health segments not just for calcium but also for the food pyramid in general. Ever have your little one come up and tell you what you are lacking? Happens all the time! Good thing too, let the next generation be better and stronger than ours! I for one could live without seeing “I’ve fallen and can’t get up" commercials and one way to silence that is to incorporate calcium into our everyday diet! The way to start our children’s lives off healthier is to change the way we ourselves eat!

Is it good to eat?

The "Wheel of Calcium" proves how tasty getting enough calcium can be. It is not just in yoghurt, cheese and milk. Even almonds contain calcium! It isn’t necessary to know exactly how much each food contains as far as the numbers are concerned with calcium. All that is really necessary is that you introduce a bit of different foods on a regular basis and before you know it (hopefully), your little ones are eating healthier than we ever dreamed of eating!

Some different foods that contain the highest amounts of calcium are follows:

·         fat free milk

·         fat free yoghurt

·         pasteurized Swiss cheese

·         calcium enriched soy drink

·         collards

·         soybeans


What else should we know?

Without adequate calcium by the age of 18 when our bones have all the calcium they are ever going to have then, ostensibly, osteoporosis could begin to set in. Smoking also increases the risk of osteoporosis as well as when menopause occurs the risk increases. It is osteoporosis that causes the most breakage of bones in women and the number one cause of joint replacement in older women following a hip fracture or a bad fall.

A bone density test is very easy to receive and is recommended after menopause. All you do is place your bare foot on a machine like a shoe sizer, the ankle is placed firmly to the back of the machine and a number shows your bone density. A calcium supplement along with foods high in calcium are highly recommended after bone loss is detected

However, this is about the younger generation! It is with the utmost sincerity that I implore you to introduce calcium rich foods to your younger generation! Old dried up prunes such as myself may be beyond help (but I do love my yoghurt especially Greek) but it is with our children that the future will prove whether we have learned our lessons well...or not.



Do you feel your children receive enough calcium rich foods in their diet?

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      Barbara Bethard 7 years ago from Tucson, Az

      hmmm bad story...too bad the MD didnt point out the worst case scenario eh? Could be your ex bro inlaw hates milk? what about yoghurt? with its acidolphilus content it helps prevent yeast!!

      a little knowledge can be a terrible thing eh? not to disparage your relative but those poor kids...their angels sure have their hands full dont they? thanks for the comment got me to thinking about the article in a whole'nuther light barbara b

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      Minnetonka Twin 7 years ago

      This is a great article on the importance of calcium. My Sister and I have had an on-going battle with her ex-husband about how important it is for their two kids. He is a chiropractor and thinks he is a medical doctor. He says that everyone should have minimal milk and/or dairy as it can create yeast issues and respiratory issues. He thinks we should all quit most dairy after were done breastfeeding as infants. My sisters pediatrician has sat the kids down and given them the REAL story. Unfortunately when their with their dad, he will not give them milk or cheese. UUGGHH! It makes us crazy.