Importance Of Calcium In The Body
Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the human body and also one of the most important minerals in the body. This is a mineral that must be consumed constantly for an overall nutrition and health. Calcium is linked to many of the roles of vitamin D and is mostly found in bones and in teeth. Calcium is a vital mineral and is essential to the body since it plays a major role for healthy teeth and bone and is also vital in other systems of the body such as the health and functioning of nerves and muscle tissues.
Calcium In The Body
Approximately 2% of the human body weight is made up of calcium in order to achieve optimal nutrition and health we must include food rich in calcium in our diets. It should be noted that lack of enough calcium in our bodies results to disorders such as Osteoporosis which is a condition where the bones are brittle.
Calcium performs several crucial functions in the body:
I) Strengthening of bones and teeth; our bodies use most of the calcium to keep our bones and teeth strong and healthy thus supporting the skeleton structure and function.
II) Regulating the functioning of body muscles such as relaxation and contruction.
III) Is vital for the blood clotting process.
IV) Helps in sending and receiving of nerve signals.
V) Releasing hormones and activating certain enzymes in the body and also in transportation of ions across the cell membranes. And also used in communicating information among cells.
VI) Calcium aids in regulating the blood pressure through maintaining a normal heartbeat.
VII) Also contributes to normal brain functioning.
VIII) Calcium lowers the body’s risk for blood pressure and Osteoporosis.
Calcium In Food
Sources of calcium mineral that should be included in our day to day diets are:
1. Daily products; daily products are the best source of calcium. Milk, yogurt, cheese and butter milk contain a great amount of calcium that is in a form in which our bodies can readily and easily absorb.
2. Vegetables; green and leafy vegetables such as mustard greens, turnip greens, kale, collards and broccoli are good examples of another source of calcium.
3. Other sources of calcium include:
>Brazil nuts, almonds, sunflower seeds, dried beans and tahini.
4. Calcium can also be added to other food products such as, bread, cereals, soy milk and orange juice. These have been proven to be very good sources of calcium to those who do not take a lot of dairy products and vegetables.
5. Dietary supplements; Calcium may also be artificially made and found in multivitamin and mineral supplements. However the amount of calcium varies depending on the individual supplement. An example of a dietary calcium supplement is Calcium Carbonate. Mainly found in anti-acids products such as Rolaids which are sold in pharmacies in the form of peals.
Too much Calcium
However, we should note that too much calcium especially in supplements can result to kidney stones and constipation.
The health benefits of calcium cannot be blindly ignored and we should all take initiative in building adequate stores of calcium supply in our bodies. Lack of enough calcium in our bodies may lead to severe effects such as brittle bones and weak teeth.
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