Why is Calcium important?
“Calcium is an essential nutrient as all living cells require calcium to remain viable; calcium is also required for a number of specific roles in the body.” (British Nutrition Foundation, 2005)
Not only is Calcium important for building and maintaining strong bones and teeth, but it also plays a role in muscle and nerve function, clotting blood and keeping your heart beating regularly. Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body, with the majority of it being found in the bone.
The RDA of calcium for adults in the UK is 700 mg/day, and the NHS suggests that “you should be able to get all the calcium you need by eating a varied and balanced diet.”
Sources of calcium
Many of us have been brought up in a world where milk and dairy products have been marketed as the best source of calcium. Whilst this could be true, there are a number of other foods which provide a sufficient amount of calcium.
We love this chart from Mind Body Green outlining some of the best sources of plant based calcium, check it out!
We particularly like these meal inspirations…
Why not try a bowl of Nairn’s Gluten Free Muesli with Chi Coconut Milk for a calcium packed breakfast?
Or this awesome Kale Salad with Edamame Beans and Tahini for a nutritional lunch or dinner? (Recipe below)
3 -4 cups raw kale, finely chopped
1/2-1 apple, chopped
1/4 cup craisins (or more to taste)
1/4 cup toasted walnuts, coarsely chopped (optional)
1/4-1/2 cup carrot, grated (I chopped mine in the food processor)
1/2 cup celery, finely chopped (or sliced thin)
1/2 cup edamame beans (can also use garbanzo beans-optional)
1/4 cup mixed sprouts (of choice-optional-I used clover)
1/3 cup tahini (well stirred)
1/3 cup water (more or less depending on how thin you want your dressing)
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (may add a little more to taste)
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2-3/4 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon honey (more or less to taste, may use other sweeteners)
1 Place all the chopped and grated veggies, nuts, and sprouts in a large bowl. Add the edamame beans and/or garbanzo beans, if using.
2 Place tahini, water(start with less water and add more to get to desired consistency), lemon juice, garlic, salt and honey in food processor or blender. Blend until smooth. This makes about 1 cup.
3 Add desired amount of dressing to salad and toss to mix.