Calcium rich foods play an important role in maintaining healthy bones and joints, strong teeth and healthy blood vessels. It also helps regulate blood pressure and prevent diabetes. There is no fixed requirement of how much calcium a person should get. It differs from country to country, and even individual to individual. But it usually lies somewhere between 700 mg and 1000 mg. femalefirst.co.uk recommends 1000 mg for those between the age groups of 19 to 50, which is the equivalent of three whole glasses of milk.
The body can get calcium from one of two source: food or your bones. In fact almost 99 per cent of the calcium is deposited in our bones and teeth. When food fails to meet your body's calcium requirements, it borrows it from your bones. If this happens over a period of time then it leads to bone loss. It's true that meat, chicken and dairy products are a great source of calcium but they aren't the only source. If you're lactose intolerant, vegan, vegetarian or simply just don't like milk products then here's a comprehensive list of foods as recommended by weight management expert, Dr. Gargi Sharma.
1. Oranges - One orange has 60 mg of calcium! So snack on this sweet and tangy fruit through the day. Oranges are also one of the most important source of Vitamin C which helps protect the immune system and destroy free radicals that cause cell damage. (Why are oranges good for you)
2. Oatmeal - Oats contain a type of soluble fibre that slows down absorption of carbohydrates into the blood stream. They're also a rich source of magnesium which is key to enzyme function and energy production, and helps prevent heart attacks and strokes. (Why oats are good for you)
(Also see - 10 best oats recipes)
3. Soya - Soya milk, soya beans and tofu are all great sources of calcium. Soya milk contains almost 261 mg of calcium and calcium is not all its rich in. It's also got iron, magnesium, protein and selenium. Soya is also the only vegetarian food that is a complete protein which means that it contains all eight essential amino acids.
(10 best soya recipes)
4. Almonds - Almonds are high on protein which means they keep you full for longer. They're rich in monounsaturated fats which is the type of fat that's known to reduce the risk of heart disease. It also helps with weight-loss and reduces cholesterol. (Why almonds are good for you?)
(Also see - Why soaked almonds are better than raw almonds)
5. White Beans - White bean refers to any bean that is white or off-white in colour. Not only can half a cup of these beans give you as much as 100 mg of calcium, but they're also extremely delicious to eat. They also have detoxifying properties and a very low glycemic index.
6. Figs - Figs are one of the fruits that are richest in fibre. They also contain minerals, series of vitamins like A, B1, B2, calcium, iron, phosphorus, manganese, sodium, potassium and chlorine. Just two medium sized figs can give you 55 mg of calcium.
(Fabulous figs and their unbelievable health benefits)
7. Broccoli - 100 grams of sturdy, green and crunchy florets can give you 47 mg of calcium. Often touted as a great 'superfood', broccoli offers high levels of immune system-boosting vitamin C, bone-strengthening vitamin K, and folate, which plays a strategic role in regulating cell growth and reproduction. (Why broccoli is good for you)
(10 best broccoli recipes)
Some other sources of calcium are dates, sesame seeds, prunes, quinoa and chia seeds.
WIth inputs from IANS