Are you getting enough calcium?

Are you getting enough calcium?

When our daily hours of cartoons got replaced with the new Netflix series, so did our simple glass of milk with a cup of coffee. Along with the child-like innocence, we lost an important nutrient in our diet, i.e. Calcium, a mineral important for bone health. Even though you might be consuming 2-3 cups of milk tea, you might be deficient in Calcium. Surprising, isn’t it? That is why we need calcium supplements for healthy bones.

Reasons why you may not be consuming enough calcium: 

Food choices -  Milk was an important source of calcium in our diet earlier. But increasingly, people are identifying that they are lactose intolerant and also choosing to live a vegan lifestyle, which is great ! But the sad part is that we aren't getting enough calcium from other sources and hence developing low calcium levels in your body. [1]

Bioavailability - You may be consuming a good amount of calcium but not everything gets absorbed in the body. Only 30% of calcium is absorbed from the milk likewise calcium absorption from plant sources is limited. The reason being plants contain antinutrients like oxalates and phosphates will obstruct calcium absorption. They bind with calcium and form an insoluble salt complex thereby decreasing its absorption. You may think your diet is enough but it isn’t .

Menopausal age – Menopause is the permanent cessation of menses. During this critical time there is a decrease in the estrogen level. Estrogen is a  hormone which helps in bone metabolism and helps in the formation of new bones. Decrease in estrogen level increases the incidence of osteoporosis as the bones become brittle. Therefore calcium supplementation plays a very important role in maintaining bone health and preventing osteoporosis.

Helper nutrients missing in the diet - Calcium helpers include Vitamin D, K2 and Magnesium. Without them your body will not be able to absorb calcium. When your plate does not include these nutrients then you may be at loss. 

  • Vitamin D- Did you know without vitamin D our body can absorb only 10-15% of calcium? Vitamin D helps in absorbing calcium actively through the intestine. A study was conducted wherein the test group was pre treated with vitamin D whereas the control group was not. They were fed 500 mg of calcium everyday. It was found that the calcium absorption was 65% more in the case of the test group who had taken vitamin D than the control group.

  • Vitamin K2- If you don't consume enough K2 in your diet then your calcium will end up in places you don’t want. In case you have consumed more calcium than the remaining calcium left from what has already been absorbed is taken from the blood vessel with the help of vitamin K2. It then deposits it in the bone tissue. [2]

  • Magnesium- Adequate levels of magnesium is helpful in absorption and metabolism of not only Vitamin D but also calcium. [3]

Medications – Medications such as  phenytoin, phenobarbital, rifampin, corticosteroids etc hinders the calcium absorption from the gut. If you are taking medication containing these compositions then you may need more calcium.

Diet rich in protein and sodium – Studies have shown that a diet rich in protein as well as sodium increases the excretion of calcium. Therefore if you are consuming a high sodium and high protein diet, you will need more calcium too.

Health conditions –  Listed below are some of the medical and health complications which cause calcium deficiency.

  • Pancreatitis
  • Renal failure
  • Hypoparathyroidism, may occur due to autoimmune disease/genetic conditions
  • Liver problems
  • Illnesses that affect the thyroid and parathyroid glands.

The aforementioned reasons could be the reasons why your body doesn't get enough calcium. Supplementation is said to be one of the effective ways to replenish calcium deficiency in the body. From now on look, pause and ensure that what you eat is the same as what you receive.

A Strong You deserves Strong Bones ! Consume Calcium, D3, K2, Magnesium supplements for Healthy Bones.