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Non-dairy sources of Calcium

Dairy products and calcium do not prevent stress fractures, according to a new study published in Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine. Researchers followed adolescent girls for seven years, tracking their diets, physical activity, and stress fractures. Girls consuming the most dairy products and calcium had no added protection. In fact, among the most active girls-exercising more than one hour per day-those who got the most calcium in their diets (coming mostly from dairy products) had more than double the risk of a stress fracture, compared with those getting less calcium. Researchers found that vitamin D intake did help cut risk. Girls getting the most vitamin D had half the risk of a fracture, compared with girls getting less vitamin D.

Sonneville KR, Gordon CM, Kocher MS, Pierce LM, Ramappa A, Field AE. Vitamin D, Calcium, and Dairy Intakes and Stress Fractures Among Female Adolescents. Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. Published ahead of print March 5, 2012.

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Molasses, black strap 2820 mg or 176 mg per tbs
Sesame butter/tahini from hulled seeds 315 mg or 19 mg per tablespoon

Dark green leafy vegetables
cooked turnip greens 450 mg
cooked bok choy 330 mg
cooked collards 300 mg
cooked spinach 250 mg
cooked kale 200 mg
parsley 200 mg
dandelion greens 150 mg     

Nori 1,200 mg   

Beans and Peas (cooked, ready to eat)
navy beans 140 mg
pinto beans 100 mg
garbanzo beans 95 mg
lima, black beans 60 mg
lentils 50 mg     

tapioca (dried) 300 mg
quinoa, cooked 80 mg
corn meal, whole grain 50 mg
rye flour, dark 40 mg
oats 40 mg
whole wheat flour 50 mg 

oysters 240 mg
shrimp 300 mg 
canned salmon eaten with bones 440  mg 
salmon with bones 490 mg  
mackerel with bones 600 mg
sardines with bones 1,000 mg 

Seeds and Nuts
almonds 750 mg
hazelnuts (filbert) 450 mg
walnuts 280 mg
sesame seeds (whole, unhulled) 2,100 mg
sunflower seeds 260 mg 

Bone Broth


The Question of Calcium

Whenever it is suggested that milk and milk products be avoided, there is always the inevitable question: “And where will I get my calcium?” Although calcium is found in innumerable foodstuffs, we have been brainwashed to believe it is only in milk. But how do cows and elephants maintain their bone structure and their size? It is certainly not by drinking some other animal’s milk. They do so by eating their natural foods, that is, leaves, grass, and other vegetable matter.

How much calcium is needed in the diet has been much argued over. The World Health Organization suggests 400 milligrams daily; the Recommended Daily Allowance in America has been 800 milligrams. This interest in adequate calcium intake has been sparked by concern about the bone-thinning condition known as osteoporosis, which for reasons not clearly understood seems to hit particularly hard in our society at women past menopause.

There are many foods that contain calcium in a natural, easy to assimilate form and are a sound alternative to dairy.

Now let’s look at the calcium question from another angle. Instead of seeing osteoporosis as a condition of lack, let’s consider it as a condition of drain. In other words, the question will be not “What is the way to add more calcium to the system?” but rather, “What is draining or keeping calcium away?” If we can find an answer to this, we can also find a different solution to the calcium shortage. That is, instead of increasing input, we can simply change conditions so that  there is no unwanted output, no drain.

The list of foodstuffs that in one way or another affect our body’s calcium balance is surprising, even if we ignore the simple, nourishing foods of the foregoing list. Some will add calcium in an unbalanced context; some are counterbalancers  to these; some will drain calcium from the system. It is important to understand that it is not enough that a food be high in calcium. The body has to be able to assimilate and utilize the calcium properly.

Foods That Can Negatively Affect Calcium Balance

  Dairy Products      Concentrated Sugars

Milk                           Sugar
Cheeses                    Honey
Ice Cream

Wine, Alcohol

Does Milk Do A Body Good?

Loaded with antibiotics, growth hormones, pesticides, and fed food other than grass certainly isn’t great for a cow’s health, never mind yours! Having treated thousands of clients for allergies, I can tell you that when those clients cut out dairy from their diets, their overall health improved noticeably. Even though their allergies hadn’t been treated yet, some clients still noticed a dramatic reduction in their congestion. For others it offered complete relief. – Sandy

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