Besides dairy foods, good food sources of calcium can be found in calcium-fortified soy milk, calcium-fortified orange juice, and fortified cereals. If you find it hard to meet your calcium needs with foods, then consider a calcium supplement, preferably calcium citrate but calcium carbonate is also a good source to consider. Consult with your doctor before taking calcium supplements, especially if you are taking thyroid hormones, tetracycline, or iron pills.
See below for daily needs and examples of calcium sources from food. Remember that Vitamin D helps calcium to be absorbed, so it's best to make sure Vitamin D is included in the supplement. Also, weight-bearing exercise helps maintain bone mass.
- Young Adults (9-18 yrs) - 1300 mg per day
- Adult men & women (age 19-50 yrs) - 1000 mg per day
- Adult men & women (age 51-70 + yrs) - 1200 mg per day
- Low fat yogurt - 1 cup (315 mg calcium)
- Soy milk (calcium fortified) - 1 cup (300 mg)
- Total cereal - 3/4 cup (300 mg)
- Orange juice (calcium fortified) - 6 oz (225 mg)
- Salmon (canned with bones) - 3 oz (200 mg)
- Tofu (made with calcium sulfate) - 3 oz (200 mg)
- Spinach, cooked - 1/2 cup (122 mg)
- Almonds - 1 oz (79 mg)
- Kale, cooked - 1/2 cup (47 mg)
- Pinto beans - 1/2 cup (40 mg)
- Broccoli, cooked - 1/2 cup (36 mg)