Less calcium means weaker bones and teeth. Want to strengthen them? Here is information about the recommended daily calcium intake.
Recommended Daily Calcium Intake
Calcium is a vital nutrient required by the body for strengthening bones. Calcium is particularly required for babies, pregnant, women who are breast-feeding and elderly people. After the age of 30, the calcium levels start deteriorating in bones and it is here where the consumption of calcium becomes all the more important. Also, the intake of calcium is of prime importance for children and teenagers. People often fall short of the recommended levels of calcium required by the body resulting in low bone density, which can lead to osteoporosis or broken bones. Calcium is essential for blood clotting and muscle contraction. Moderate levels of calcium can help you reduce the risk of heart diseases. We lose calcium every day in the form of sweat and urine but since our body does not synthesize calcium, we are left with no other choice but to depend on calcium from reliable food sources or supplements. Guidelines have been laid in the past regarding the total calcium intake per person per day, but amendments have been made and new guidelines have been set. Read further to explore information about the daily calcium intake.
Daily Calcium Intake
Dietary Reference Intakes (DRI) which is developed by the Food and Nutrition Board (FNB), provides you with the recommended intake of calcium for your body. The term DRI may be defined as a set of values that helps assess the daily nutritional requirement of a healthy person based on his age and gender. Read on to learn more about these values
Recommended Intake Values
- Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) defines the daily average intake by nearly 98% individuals to meet the nutrient requirements of the body.
- Adequate Intake is used when evidence required to establish the RDA is insufficient, then we resort to AI, wherein which we set a value that meets nutritional adequacy.
- Tolerable Upper Intake Level (UL) may be defined as the maximum amount of nutrients taken by a person, which is less likely to cause adverse health effects.
- Estimated Average Requirement (EAR) is considered in the case of 50% of healthy individuals, where we assess the daily average intake that meets their nutritional requirements. It is mostly used to estimate the nutritional adequacy of populations rather than individuals.
- The RDAs that are established by Food and Nutrition Board (FNB) gives a fairly good idea of the amount of calcium required daily for bone health and calcium retention by the body.
- The recommended calcium intake for men and women in the age group of 19-50 is 1,000 mg per day. While, for people in the age group of 50-70, the recommended daily calcium intake is 1,200 mg a day.
- If the intake of calcium is lower than the recommended amounts, it can become a serious cause of concern, leading to thinning of bones and thus, paving way for osteoporosis to occur.
- Calcium dietary supplements coupled with calcium rich foods will help meet the required amount of calcium for your body. Less than 1% of calcium helps in nerve transmission, hormone secretion, vasodilation and muscle contraction, while the remaining 99% of it is stored in bones and teeth.
- Make sure you stick to the daily calcium intake because excessive intake of calcium can also result in serious problems like kidney stones, hypercalcemia (it causes renal failure), soft tissue calcification etc.
- Higher intake of calcium also interferes with the absorption of iron, zinc and magnesium in your body. You may be at risk of heart diseases if you have a higher intake of calcium in the form of calcium dietary supplements.
- Studies have shown that people mostly derive excess calcium not from foods, but from calcium dietary supplements. So, strictly sticking to the guidelines and a change in your lifestyle can help maintain the right levels of calcium for healthy and strong bones.
When calcium is consumed, it leads to loss of fluids in the body, thus causing dehydration. Thus, it is advisable to have plenty of fluids, while consuming calcium in any amount. Consumption of calcium carbonate can lead to gas and constipation problem and if such a thing happens, it is preferable to look forward towards consuming calcium citrate as a good alternative. So, make sure that your calcium intake is in parity with the set guidelines.