Why Calcium Is Important To Your Body
Written by: Brandi Monasco
We have all heard that “you need to drink your milk so you can grow up to be big and strong.”
Calcium is just one of the many important minerals that your body needs in order to function properly and to maintain optimal health, especially when it comes to your bones.
Why is calcium so important?
- Protects Bones. One of the more popular reasons heard for making sure that you have enough calcium in your diet is for bone strength. It is also responsible for growing new bones. Making sure that you have enough calcium in your diet can help prevent osteoporosis, or weakening or loss of the bones. Calcium also helps in keeping your bones in their proper state and can also help prevent arthritis.
- Protects Cardiac Muscles. 99% of calcium’s function is found in the teeth and bones. The remaining 1% is used for nerve transmission and to protect muscles, this includes your cardiac muscles. Having an adequate amount of calcium in your body can help your cardiac muscles to function properly such as when contracting and relaxing. Calcium also plays a role in maintaining the proper pressure in your arteries. A low level of calcium can increase your blood pressure.
- Prevents Cancer. Having an adequate amount of calcium in your daily diet could potentially lower your risk of having colon cancer and can also prevent the growth of colon polyps that can eventually lead to cancer. Calcium reduces the risk of adenomas, which are non-cancerous tumors that can affect different organs within your body. When calcium enters your body, the excess travels through to your colon. Any calcium that has not been absorbed binds together with cancer promoters and are excreted together from your body.
- Prevents Kidney Stones. Kidney stones are solid masses that are made of crystals, often times made of calcium and other minerals. Even though kidney stones are made of calcium, a high intake of dietary calcium actually reduces your risk of kidney stones. The calcium that is found in kidney stones is excess calcium that is found in water and eating large amounts of green leafy vegetables such as spinach and kale.
When you were growing up, you were told to drink your milk. However, there are other better ways to make sure you get your daily recommended amount of calcium:
- Bone broth
- Dark leafy greens such as collard greens, bok choy, turnip greens, kale, broccoli
What is your favorite natural source of calcium? Share with us in the comments below!
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Brandi Monasco is a freelance writer, graphic designer and social media manager from Texas. She graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Communication Arts and has recently found a new love for health and nutrition.
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