Calcium Deficiency Causes: Calcium in Foods and Calcium Supplementation
Calcium deficiency is a major concern in the United States. Over 75% of Americans don't get what they need. Calcium does ninety percent of its work building bone mass during the first seventeen years of life with the balance occurring by age twenty eight. If bone loss occurs after this time it cannot be be restored. Calcium is important for healthy bones throughout life. It is an essential element vital to many body functions.
The two causes of calcium deficiency are a diet low in calcium and an inability to absorb and metabolize the mineral. Calcium is the main component of bones and teeth and is involved in maintainance, growth and reproduction of the human body. Other functions are transmitting nerve impulses, regulating heartbeat, blood coagulation, muscle contraction and relaxation, stimulating hormone secretion and the activation of enzyme reactions. Calcium deficiency is linked to osteoporosis, colon cancer and high blood pressure.
A low calcium level in the blood because of poor diet causes the body to leach calcium from the bones. The body returns calcium to the bones when it receives it through diet. If the diet continues to be poor in calcium there will not be enough calcium in the blood to give back to the bones. Eventually this leads to osteoporosis.
Among the youth of America there is widespread calcium deficiency putting them at risk for many major health problems. Infants have been developing rickets, a disease usually associated with vitamin D deficiency, around the age of twenty months. This is due to lack of calcium in the diet after breast feeding was discontinued. According to the National Institutes of Health, only about 25% of boys and 10% of girls get enough calcium in their diets. Osteoporosis in Americans aged 50 years old and up is the reason for 1.5 millon fractures every year. It is estimated that 10 million people have osteoporosis and 34 million more have low bone mass placing them at risk for osteoporosis.
High blood pressure affects around 50 million Americans and is very common among African Americans and older people. A study done on women with a diet continually low in calcium revealed that women who take 1500-2000 mg of calcium daily reduce the risk of getting high blood pressure from pregnancy by as much as 50%. It was also found that pregnant women who had a calcium rich diet, had babies that weighed more and had lower blood pressure that continued at least through the first five years of life.
Calcium may be Beneficial in Prevention and Treatment of Several Health Conditions which include cataracts, osteoporosis, colon cancer, high blood pressure, kidney stones, premenstrual syndrome, pregnacy induced high blood pressure and inflammatory bowel disease.
The best sources of calcium are spinach, collard greens, mustard seeds and turnip greens. Other great sources include kale, swiss chard, blackstrap molasses, mozzarella cheese swiss chard, basil. cinnamon, thyme, dill seed, and peppermint leaves. Good sources include, broccoli, romaine lettuce, celery, brussel sprouts, oranges, asparagus, sesame seeds, fennel, cabbage, summer squash, basil, thyme, dill seed, cinnamon, and peppermint leaves, cow's milk, and goat's milk. (The amount of calcium in food is not affected by cooking or storage).
Calcium supplementation is necessary for those who do not adequate amounts of calcium from their diet. Calcium Supplements can be purchases in different forms. The most common are carbonates or citrates. Calcium citrate is the best choice for maximum absorption and bioavailability in the body.The recommended daily intake of calcium is as follows: 210mg for 0 to 6 months old, 270mg for 6 to 12 months old, 500mg for1 to 3 years old, 800mg for 4 to 8 years old, 1300mg for 9 to 18 years old, 1000mg for 19 to 50 years old and 1200mg for 51 years old and above.
Calcium is one of the essential minerals needed to maintain life. Most people in America today are calcium deficient and are in danger of serious health conditions developing. By taking preventative measure today you can avoid the undesirable and inevidable outcome of calcium deficiency.
- Understanding Vitamin D Deficiency
It is quite alarming that people of all ages are being affected by vitamin D deficiency. The problem is much more serious than anyone realized.
- Understanding Magnesium Deficiency
A recent government study shows that 68% of Americans don't consume enough magnesium on a daily basis. Magnesium deficits are linked to allergies, asthma, attention deficit disorder, anxiety, heart disease, muscle cramps and other conditions.