Vitamin D, Calcium and Kids: Are They Building Strong bones? According to an article by Patti Neighmond (“Recipe For Strong Teen Bones: Exercise, Calcium And Vitamin D”), there’s a relatively small window of time during which our bones do most of their growing. In fact, she claims that between the ages of 9 – 15, 90% of our bone mass develops. And yet, she points out, only 15% of teenagers drink milk, with girls accounting for only 9%. The reasons for this lack of milk drinking seem to be simply that drinking milk is not considered ‘cool’ and the fear of weight gain. The ‘uncool’ness of drinking milk has been addressed by the “Got Milk?” ads for many years.Read More >
You will need both of these nutrients if you want to stay healthy and strong. Calcium, which is the mineral that’s necessary for proper body function and healthy teeth, is stored in your bones which is why they say to drink your milk. However, calcium can only be absorbed by the body with vitamin D. So, no vitamin D means no absorption of calcium which means no strong bones. So in order to have the body of a superhero, you’ll need a diet chock full of both. Today we’ll give you some ideas for food choices that have healthy levels of vitamin D and calcium.
Sardines, Salmon, Catfish, & Tuna
Sardines, salmon, catfish, and tuna are all fish that have high levels of vitamin D. Some fish like salmon and tuna also have other healthy nutrients such omega 3 fatty acids. Sardines are actually your super food on this list; this type of fish not only contains vitamin D but also has a good amount of calcium as well. You’ll learn to love them. A 3 ounce serving of salmon contains 100% of your vitamin D while a 3 ounce serving of tuna has about 40%.
There’s a reason they say to drink your milk. One cup of milk provides about 30 percent of the calcium you need on a daily basis. But get this, you can also buy milk fortified with vitamin D, so you’re basically killing two birds with one stone here.
Yogurt is another great source of calcium that’s often also fortified with vitamin D. Include some yogurt into your daily routine and you can get up to 30% of your daily calcium and 20% of your vitamin D in just one serving. There’s also many brands of fat free yogurt out there, which is just another perk of eating yogurt.
Cheese is made from milk, which means you’ll be getting your daily dose of calcium with a good serving of cheese in your diet. An ounce and a half of cheddar cheese has more than 30% of the calcium you need, but remember you still need vitamin D as well, which cheese lacks.
You can find many kinds of fortified foods in your supermarket, especially breakfast foods. Look for certain cereals that contain vitamin D and other nutrients. Orange juice with calcium and vitamin D can also be purchased.
Nuts and seeds
Nuts and seeds also help to build strong bones. Half a cup of almonds gives you around 12% of your calcium needs, while other kinds of nuts have lots of protein which helps to bulk up your bones. You can also try brazil nuts, sunflower seeds, and sesame seeds.
The key to getting vitamin D from eggs is in the yolk. One egg has about 6% of your daily vitamin D needs, so eat a couple to get the right amount.
Written by: Luu Chang, Dental Assistant Salary
Luu is a writer at Dental Assistant Salary, which provides all the info you need to get started as a dental assistant. Learn more about the occupation at http://dental-assistant-salary.net
Healthy bones are important for movement, supporting the body to maintain its posture and protecting vital organs like the brain. Bones are also vital production centers since blood cells are created in the bone marrow.
To keep your bones strong and healthy so that they can function normally you should:
1. Eat calcium rich foods
Eat calcium rich foods like milk, yogurt, cheese, almonds, soybeans and green leafy vegetables like spinach and kale since the body will remove this mineral from the bones if a person does not take adequate amounts in their diet.
2. Bask in the sun
Bask in the sun for at least 15 minutes thrice a week since the body makes vitamin D when it is exposed to sunlight. This sunshine vitamin is vital for strong bones because the body needs it to absorb calcium. During winter, compensate by taking a supplement or by eating sardines and other oily fish as well as shrimp, liver, egg yolks and fortified cereal.
3. Eat vitamin K rich foods
Eat vitamin K rich foods like broccoli, bok choy, kale, spinach and Swiss chard since this nutrient is needed to make proteins for healthy bones and reduce the loss of calcium from the body.
4. Limit coffee intake
Drink less than 4 cups of coffee each day because too much caffeine can interfere with the body’s ability to absorb calcium and increase the rate of bone loss from the body, as well as increase the risk for developing fractures.
Spend 5 hours each week doing weight bearing exercises like walking, running, hiking, dancing, skiing, pushing a lawn mower and vacuuming your home since bones gets stronger when they are used. Regular physical exercise also helps prevent the falls that fracture bones by improving balance, coordination and strength.
6. Stop smoking
Stop smoking since studies have shown that cigarettes can prevent the body from absorbing calcium and decrease bone mass.
7. Limit alcohol intake
Limit consumption of alcohol to one alcoholic drink per day for women and two for men because heavy consumption can cause bone loss by interfering with the activity of vitamin D.
Written by: Marian Kim, FizzNiche Staff Writer
Our skeletal structure is what holds us up, but what holds up our skeleton? Calcium, you say? Correct–but only partially. Did you know that the interior of a bone is made of collagen? So says Oxford Press’ Contributing Writer and Registered Dietitian, Holly Larson (www.oxfordpress.com).
The teamwork between several nutrients creates the dense living tissue called bone. Collagen binds two minerals—vitamin C and copper–together. More than calcium. But, as we all know, calcium is highly important to make strong bones. But, then, so is phosphorus and magnesium.
Phosphorus and magnesium are both little known, but very commonly-occurring minerals in the body. Calcium is vital because it’s also required for muscle contraction. If your system is low on calcium, your bones will lose their calcium to supply it to the muscles.
However, a healthy diet will nourish your whole body as well as your bones. To get enough calcium into your body, eat low-fat dairy products, fish and dark green leafy vegetables. Collagen will form from foods rich in copper and vitamin C, so eat seafood, nuts, grains, organ meats, citrus fruits, bell peppers and strawberries.
Then, be sure to eat protein-rich foods to get phosphorus such as steak, fish, nuts, seeds, and beans. Add beans, spinach, oysters and…..get this….dark chocolate… (yes!) to your diet to get magnesium into your body. Remember it takes more than just calcium to make those bones healthy.
Strength training–weight lifting, lunges, and push-ups—which, by putting stress on bones, builds them up. Exercises such as walking, jogging, running and jumping also put that same type of “positive” stress on the bones to make them denser and stronger.
So, there is a lot more to strong bones than just calcium. And a lot more than calcium to make strong bones. But it’s not really “rocket science.” Mostly, just planning varied and nutritious low-fat eating. And doing some old-fashioned, common sense exercise. Eat right, exercise, and bone up.
Written by: Ruby Holder Moseley, FizzNiche Staff Writer