"The fact is, the vast majority of people around the world consume much less calcium than we do in the U.S. (primarily because they eat less dairy), and these populations generally have much lower rates of osteoporosis. On the flip side of this picture is our society’s situation: high calcium intake and sizeable osteoporosis rates.
Let me tackle both the calcium/other nutrient subject and the dairy issue.
First, the nutrients… Ironically, too much calcium can inhibit the absorption of another mineral that the body needs for bone health: magnesium, which aids in bone formation and helps regulate calcium transfer as well as maintain bone density. (They compete for the same absorption pathways.) Most of us could use more of this mineral. Think leafy greens, seeds, nuts, fish. On the same note, vitamin D is absolutely essential for bone density and may be more important than calcium.
As to the dairy, it’s true that dairy products offer among the highest amounts of calcium in any food. However, dairy is acid-forming, which counters the alkaline ideal for absorption. The fact is dairy isn’t necessary for adequate calcium intake and/or bone health. As mentioned, most of the world is testament to that (and let’s not forget Grok’s prior two million years of dairy-free living).
Ultimately, bone health depends on a number of factors – a constellation of nutrition, activity, and various hormone factors. Here are my nutrient and lifestyle recommendations to maximize calcium absorption and overall bone health…
Get your calcium from alkaline-forming foods like leafy greens, nuts, broccoli, sweet potatoes and calcium-rich fish like wild salmon and sardines.
Eat a diet high in antioxidant fruits and veggies. Go low to moderate on carbs to help maintain hormonal balance, and eliminate grains (phytates in grains can bind to calcium and decrease absorption)."
Excerpt from Mark’s Daily Apple “Calcium for Women”
For the full article and more calcium-related tips, click HERE