To promote strong bones throughout your life, it is recommended that everyone consume calcium on a daily basis. For adults between the ages of 19-50 they should consume 1000mg of calcium per day. If you are over 50 you should consume 1200mg per day.
When most people think of calcium we immediately think of milk as the ideal source. Unfortunately, milk does not do the body good as we once thought. In fact, milk is not the best source of calcium.
According to Annemarie Colbin, PhD, author of Food and Our Bones states, “You see the most fractures in countries that drink a lot of milk,” she says. “I am not too keen on dairy.” She goes on to mention that if look at animals with the largest bones (cows & elephants) they eat leafy plants.
In order to have healthy bones the largest part of your diet should consist of leafy green vegetables, both cooked and raw. Some of the best examples are spinach, broccoli, and kale. These greens not only give you calcium but also provide vitamin K, potassium and other minerals, which are essential to bone growth.
Here is an example of food with high amounts of calcium:
- Cup of spinach-245 mg
- Quarter cup of sesame seeds- 351 mg
- Two cups of broccoli- 124 mg
- One cup of kale- 94 mg
- One ounce of almonds- 75mg
It is recommended to spread your calcium intake throughout the day. To absorb calcium optimally, most experts recommend consuming 500mg or less at each meal or snack.