We all know that calcium is good for the bones, but that’s where its role in the body just begins. Calcium is also needed for healthy joints, muscles, teeth, hair, skin, nails as well as supporting other major systems.

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Why Do Cyclists We Need Calcium?

As calcium is one of the most important and essential minerals in our body it is critical that we get enough if we want to remain healthy. Calcium is not only abundant in our bones, teeth and nails, but is required by almost every cell including the heart, nerves and muscles. And without our skeletal system, well we would not be much use and quite floppy, so it is essential for the bones. In fact our entire skeleton is renewed every seven years! So without enough calcium in our diet, the body takes stored calcium out of the bones for other essential functions. It’s a bit like a bank account, where you have to keep the deposit topped up in case it is needs withdrawals somewhere else.

Swiss Cheese 950mg
Tahini 600mg
Spirulina 445mg
Torula Yeast 424mg
Carob 352mg
Kale 249mg
Almonds 245mg
Salmon Canned with Bones 240mg
Figs 240mg
Soya Beans 226mg
Watercress 192mg
Brazil Nuts 186mg
Tofu 156mg
Chickpeas 150mg
Broccoli 123mg
Silverbeet 115mg

Which Vitamins and Minerals can help Calcium absorption?

Magnesium is the carrier of Calcium to the cell membrane which maintains the correct balance within the body. Magnesium may also help reduce the accumulation of excessive amounts of calcium built up in the kidneys. Vitamin D supports the absorption of Calcium by helping maintain normal blood calcium levels and stimulating the reabsorption mechanism. Sources of Vitamin D are from the sun or from food sources such as cod liver oil.

What Type of Calcium is Best?

Calcium is just not calcium, as there are many different types coming from varying sources.

  • Calcium Hydroxypatite is processed crushed cow bone.
  • Calcium Citrate is limestone or chalk processed with lactic or citric acid.
  • Calcium Carbonate is limestone or precipitated chalk.
  • Calcium Gluconate is limestone or chalk processed with gluconic acid.
  • Calcium Lactate is limestone processed with lactic acid.

All of these forms are found in many general Calcium Supplement Formulas and may work sufficiently, but as we do not absorb minerals in rocks like plants do, some individuals find them less effective. It is therefore best to take naturally occurring calcium from plants and vegetable foods, if not Hydroxypatite from animals. The best absorbed and tolerated sources are Calcium Hydroxypatite, Calcium Citrate and Sea Vegetables. Sea Vegetables are a great source for allergy sufferers and vegetarians.

Please consult with your health practitioner for further information and products suitable for your needs.

References

“Calcium – Health Benefits” – Hyperhealth Pro 2006 (v6.0)

Source: http://www.newleafonline.com.au/articles/article_calcium/index.htm