Calcium is one of the richest minerals found in a person’s body. Did you know that calcium is the most abundant mineral found in the body? Yes! Almost 98 percent of our calcium stores can be found in our bones and teeth, which help in their maintenance. Yet, most people do not eat enough of calcium-rich foods and are unaware of the fact that doing so can have a negative impact on one’s body.
Calcium plays an important role in maintaining an individual’s health. It controls the human body’s critical functions such as balancing the blood’s pH balance. Calcium contributes to the development of an infant’s bones and teeth, and helps in their maintenance in an adult. It is also involved in several key bodily processes, such as transmitting signals in our nerves and aiding in the contraction of muscles (1).
When we talk about calcium, the first thing that comes to a person’s mind is milk or other dairy products. Well, this is absolutely true. Milk is no doubt an abundant source of calcium. But, if you are one of those who cannot (or will not) consume dairy products and yet wants to know more about some dairy-free ways to get your daily dose of calcium, then read on!
1. White Beans Might Help
These light and creamy white beans are a great source of calcium as well as iron. Most of you might wonder what to do with these beans and how to include them in your diet. You can make creamy pasta with these beans and a lot of healthy veggies. You can also make a delicious hummus to make dressings or dips!
2. Turnip Greens Work Wonders
These leafy veggies are rich in calcium, iron, vitamin A, and vitamin C. They are an abundant source of sodium as well as potassium. Filled with a variety of antioxidants, turnip greens can be used a side dish to decorate any exotic dish that you prepare.
3. Kale Is Good If It’s Raw
Kale — especially raw kale – is a great source of calcium. Also known as leaf cabbage, kale has a number of health benefits. It is good for our brain, reduces type II diabetes, and is enriched with omega-3 fatty acids (2).
You might be surprised to know that kale has more calcium than an entire container of milk! In fact, it is one of the best sources of calcium. Kale has about 150 milligrams of calcium per 100 grams, whereas milk has only 125 milligrams of calcium per 100 grams.
4. Seaweed Is A Rich Source
As far as calcium is concerned, seaweed might be a choicest option. It is full of calcium and iodine. It is also rich in fiber. All these things put together are a great choice for those dealing with thyroid problems. If you are afflicted with thyroid troubles and are looking for a dairy-free source of calcium, seaweed just might be your thing!
5. Bok Choy Contains Calcium
Also known as Chinese cabbage, bok choy is another great source of calcium. Two cups of bok choy contain around 148 milligrams of calcium! So, include bok choy in your diet and never worry about a lack of calcium ever.
6. Almonds Are Rich In Calcium
Almonds — easy to get your hands on and nice in taste. A cup of almonds, especially roasted ones, contain around 457 milligrams of calcium. However, this same cup will also contain a whopping 1000 calories. So, it’s best to stick to eating at least 8 to 10 almonds every day. And the best part? You can eat almonds at any time! Add them to salads or oats, blend them in your smoothies or munch on them on the go. Do this and you will see wonderful results within a few weeks.
7. Dried Figs And Black-Eyed Peas Make A Great Choice
Dried figs are full of antioxidants, fiber, and calcium. They are easily available and you can munch on them as a mid-morning snack or eat them after your evening jog. Moreover, black-eyed peas are another rich source of calcium. The delicious peas contain 24 milligrams of calcium per 100 grams. They also help in improving digestion and contain high levels of dietary fiber. Hence, if you are suffering from frequent constipation problems, black-eyed peas could be your thing.
So, if you suffer from lactose intolerance or just aren’t a big fan of the taste of cheese or milk, worry not – dairy products are not always a rich source of calcium. There are several other food items such as vegetables that too are rich in this bone-health-boosting mineral. If you’ve been worried about your calcium intake, do add the above mentioned foods into your everyday diet and let us know about your experience in the comments below!