Calcium is a mineral that is necessary for life and for our bodies to thrive. In addition to building bones and keeping them healthy, calcium enables our blood to clot, our muscles to contract, and our heart to beat. About 99% of the calcium in our bodies is in our bones and teeth.
Calcium is the kind of mineral that is most likely to be a deficient in an average human diet. Currently, calcium deficiency is a common condition to every individual. According to the official statistics gathered by the Federal government, only 21 percent of the total population in the United States is getting the required amount of calcium.
Importantly, having calcium deficiency may result to a long term thinning of the bones, osteoporosis or the softening of the bony tissue and commonly called as “osteomalacia”. Also, the defective metabolism of the calcium in the body during childhood may result to the condition called “rickets” A recent study showed that lack of the required calcium level may cause hypertension or high blood pressure and colon cancer.
Perhaps you’ve heard it many times that calcium deficiency may result to osteoporosis. Osteoporosis, is often diagnosed when it’s too late just to reverse the condition’s development. In United States, close to about 10 million individuals have osteoporosis that is caused by calcium deficiency. Close to another 34 million people is experiencing low bone mass, placing them to the risk of having the disease.
Having insufficient calcium intake to the body may result to the drawing of the reserves of calcium levels in your teeth and bones. With calcium deficiency, your bones will become lighter, hollow, and be porous. In weak bones, possible fractures in spine and weakened hips can take place easily and may end to permanent disability, cruel pain, hospitalization, and even death.
Moreover, there are other calcium deficiency symptoms that can be observed by anyone. Since calcium is also present in nails and teeth, having calcium deficiency may bring brittle nails and tooth decay.
In view of the fact that your body requires a small level of calcium to move through soft tissues and bodily fluids every time, inadequate calcium intake can bring these additional symptoms and these are:
• Experiencing muscle cramps
• Having muscle spasms in arms and legs
• Leg and back cramps
• Tingling and numbness, and
• Joint pain
So, as you can see Calcium is crucial for our bodies to function at their best.
Some calcium rich foods that are a great option to integrate into your diet are:
- milk, cheese and other dairy foods.
- green leafy vegetables – such as curly kale, okra and spinach.
- soya drinks with added calcium.
- bread and anything made with fortified flour.
- fish where you eat the bones – such as sardines and pilchards.
If you are finding trouble getting enough calcium, incorporating a dietary supplement is highly recommended. Speak with your doctor to see if you can get your levels tested to see what you may need. Your bones will thank you!