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Thread: Vegans and calcium

  1. #101
    nervine
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    what! a 1000mg of calcium a day.. that's just insane. u eat really healthy. u don't need to worry about a thing. only thing i'd change is switch ur multivitamin with spirulina.

  2. #102
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    Quote nervine View Post
    nuts and seeds, best soaked for a few hours first, brocolli, spirulina, mineral water, kale. i don't like the vegan society. u don't need tofu or fortified milks or supplements.. and that RDA shit i don't believe in either. it all comes from corporate backed 'studies' and we all know how much you can trust the government when it comes to food..
    I never heard of the soaking of seeds and nuts first. Why is this? Can you digest them better this way?

    I can't handle tofu. . .

    Thanks
    Ann

  3. #103
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    Quote nervine View Post
    what! a 1000mg of calcium a day.. that's just insane. u eat really healthy. u don't need to worry about a thing.

    Thanks - i try. I also try to buy organic whenever possible. It's not always easy to find though.

  4. #104
    nervine
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    Quote paragonx View Post
    I never heard of the soaking of seeds and nuts first. Why is this? Can you digest them better this way?

    I can't handle tofu. . .

    Thanks
    Ann
    yeah they digest better, and good that u can't handle tofu, proves once again that its worse for u than it is good.. haven't eaten it in months.

  5. #105
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    I don't like to take suppliments or eat fortified foods. Ilike to eat things as least messed with as possible. As a matter of fact i just started taking the suppliment on Friday. How else to get the B12?

  6. #106
    nervine
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    ahh then just take a B12 supplement, not a multivitamin. its cheaper.

  7. #107
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    As a fairly new vegan (two months) I just discovered Hemp Milk.

    It has a lot of calcium in it. It doesn't taste that great though, so I sweeten it with organic molasses. Very addicting when used that way.

    Good luck!

  8. #108
    baffled harpy's Avatar
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    If you live in an area with "hard" water, you can get a fair amount of calcium from that as well -12% of the RDA per litre of London water, according to this:

    http://www.whatreallyworks.co.uk/sta...rticle_ID=1784

    Not sure if filtering the water would remove the calcium. Some bottled water has a lot of calcium as well.

  9. #109
    yum! angelamc's Avatar
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    Hemp milk? I have never heard of that but I bet I wouldn't like it since I'm so picky about the brand of soymilk that I use.
    I eat a ton of broccoli and dark leafy greens. That's where I get most of my calcium from.

  10. #110
    Gazes at Trees Sandy777's Avatar
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    Quote paragonx View Post
    I don't like to take suppliments or eat fortified foods. Ilike to eat things as least messed with as possible. As a matter of fact i just started taking the suppliment on Friday. How else to get the B12?
    Meridians Yeast Extract, nice big jar (340g) and not expensive, has 2mg of B12 per 4g serving. That's loads - apparently you don't even need much. Nice on toast for breakfast and you can use it for stock etc.
    I've never met a cat I didn't like.

  11. #111
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    It was many many years ago, but I'm sure I read a book called "The New Why You Don't Need Meat", by Peter Cox. If I remember correctly, never guaranteed, it claimed that if you were worried about calcium, you could just grind up chalk and put it in your food! Please don't take this as medical/nutritional advice though.

  12. #112
    gorillagorilla Gorilla's Avatar
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    i drink water straight out of the tap at work in London - mostly because there's no room to keep a water filter there, but i think it tastes fine. but i don't drink it from the tap at home in Brighton because i think it tastes worse. i filter it at home. i drink about two litres of water a day at work so along with my diet i guess i'm doing ok calcium-wise

    what makes you think you need more calcium, paragonx? do you have symptoms of deficiency?
    'The word gorilla was derived from the Greek word Gorillai (a "tribe of hairy women")'

  13. #113
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    Gorilla - i don't have any symptons. I read that i should get 1000 mg of calcium per day and i am only getting any where from 25% - 46% of that daily.
    What would a sypmton of low calcium be? Just curious. . .

    Thanks
    -Ann

  14. #114
    gorillagorilla Gorilla's Avatar
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    i think i've read somewhere on this forum that the RDA of calcium was set artificially high by governments (especially in the US) to encourage dairy consumption - i'm not sure how true that is though. i think 750mg is probably a more realistic daily intake to aim for.

    apparently some symptoms of deficiency can include brittle hair and nails, depression, cramps, insomnia and obviously in the long term osteoporosis. i think you need vitamin D to absorb calcium too so make sure you get a good source of that.
    'The word gorilla was derived from the Greek word Gorillai (a "tribe of hairy women")'

  15. #115
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    Let's just think about why dairy is 'high' in calcium...
    Where do you think cows get their calcium from so they can produce calcium-rich milk for their babies as well as having enough for themselves?
    I don't think grass is particularly high in calcium, especially if it is not growing in chalky soil.
    In the wild, animals seem to know when their bodies need minerals - for bones, shells or eggshells - and will seek out what they need. Farmed animals do not have this opportunity, so it is provided for them by the farmer in their feed or as 'salt-lick'. Ground limestone ("agricultural lime") is spread on pasture, where some is used by the grasses and some will be licked up by grazing animals.
    So most of the calcium in dairy products (and meat) has actually come from supplements! Just as it is more sensible, healthy and humane for humans to get protein directly from plants rather than feeding plant protein to animals and then eating the animals or animal products, it's more sensible, healthy and humane to get calcium in the same way! i.e. by eating plants rich in calcium and by supplementing with natural minerals as necessary. Just a small pinch of ground limestone or chalk will give you the recommended 700 mg a day even if you were getting none at all from plants or water.

    If tap water in your area has only temporary hardness (London is an example), the calcium bicarbonate that is responsible is converted to the insoluble calcium carbonate by boiling in your kettle and will settle as sediment and scale. Therefore your tea or coffee will be lower in calcium than the original tap water. A few areas have water that is permanently hard - i.e. the calcium is not precipitated by boiling - because the water source has come from rocks containing gypsum (calcium sulphate), so tea or coffee made there will still have most of the calcium of the original water. Whether or not it tastes any better I couldn't say!

    A plant source that is often quoted as being high in calcium is sesame seed, (either whole, or crushed to form tahini) - presumably the sesame needs a limey (high pH) soil to grow in, as that is the only place it can get the calcium from!

  16. #116
    Karma Junkie vava's Avatar
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    Default I am having trouble getting enough calcium

    I use fitday.com to make a note of what i am eating and count my calories in an effort to lose some weight. I think the site is good for showing you the individual nutrients you are consuming but it seems day after day I am not making the calcium requirements. Today I had half a pack of tofu in my breakfast shake and then smoked tofu for main evening meal and still I have only had 25% of the daily intake I require according to the site.

    I went down the double tofu route today cos I looked up foods high in calcium and tofu was one. Would be nice if I could eat a healthy diet and get all the nutrients I need without thinking I need to have a mineral supplement.

    Today I have eaten - shake for breakfast = 3 quarters of a pint of almond milk, banana, can of blackcurrants and half a pack of silken firm tofu.

    apple and two rings of fresh pineapple

    evening meal - Smoked tofu in onion gravy with mashed potatoes and broccoli

    snack - one and a half lines of greens and blacks cherry chocolate, 5 panda licorice bears and an apple.

    Can anyone suggest how I can get some more calcium with my diet so that I don't have to resort to tablets? I do like cabbage, kale and sprouts but not every day!

  17. #117
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    Default Re: I am having trouble getting enough calcium

    Nuts are a good source of calcium so are soybeans, tahini and black strap molasses.

  18. #118
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    Default Re: I am having trouble getting enough calcium

    Are you against fortified foods as well as vitamin/mineral supplements? A pint of fortified nut or soy milk would probably have a good deal of calcium.

    What are fitday's daily requirements? 1000-1500 mg is what the US FDA suggests for someone eating SAD food, but you probably need a lot less if you exercise, get vitamin D (through sunshine or supplementation), and avoid eating excess protein or sodas that contain phosphoric acid.

    In "Food Revolution" John Robbins claims that the body is actually more efficient at using calcium from plant sources, so that would be another reason you wouldn't need as much.... If you can pick up the book at the library, it has a really good chapter on milk and the calcium issue (called "Got BS?" ).

    Everyone will probably jump on me for this, but as someone who has counted calories and nutrients in the past, I don't think it's feasible to get 1000-1500 mg of calcium from a vegan diet without eating fortified foods or taking some kind of supplement. Then again, you probably don't need 1000-1500 mg.

    How much calcium have you been averaging (if fitday allows you to see weekly or monthly averages)?

    PS: I think most dark green veggies have calcium (not just the three you mentioned). Like broccoli and asparagus? I figure it's good to eat at least one serving of something green and/or leafy every day.

    If you go to "nutritiondata.com" you can look up the calcium content of different foods (though I assume fitday has a similar database).
    Last edited by ALexiconofLove; Jan 29th, 2008 at 08:50 PM. Reason: Forgot about the green veggies!
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  19. #119
    Karma Junkie vava's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am having trouble getting enough calcium

    only been doing it again for a few days cos I was unwell all over christmas and new year but for the past 4 days the average is 32% of RDA although it doesn't tell you what RDA is - just says calculated by age and sex.

    I had almond milk in my smoothie today instead of soya milk cos I had soya in the form of tofu in my smoothie and tofu again at tea time. I don't want to overload on soya.

    I will have soya milk tomorrow tho and see if I can bump it up a bit - thanks so much for your replies much appreciated!

  20. #120
    Alex ALexiconofLove's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am having trouble getting enough calcium

    Quote vavavegan View Post
    I had almond milk in my smoothie today instead of soya milk cos I had soya in the form of tofu in my smoothie and tofu again at tea time. I don't want to overload on soya.
    Yeah, I worry about overloading on soy (probably just buying into meat-eater propaganda!). Someone must make a fortified nut milk?

    If fitday is a US site, then the RDA would probably be 1000 -1500 mg, meaning you're getting somewhere between 300 and 500 mg of calcium... 500 would be better than 300, if you could manage it.

    Also, I don't know how fitday works exactly (I've used calorieking in the past), but are you logging generic "tofu" or generic "nut milk" or generic "soy milk," or are you logging the specific brands you use? There can be a *lot* of variation by brand. Unfortified soymilk won't have all that much calcium (somewhere around 50 mg, I think?), but fortified soymilk will have tons.
    "Lovers, givers, what minds have we made/ that make us hate/ a slaughterhouse for torturing a river?" ==AF

  21. #121

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    Default Re: I am having trouble getting enough calcium

    Unless you buy a fortified tofu, they don't have that much calcium. I would switch the tofu for a fortified soy or rice milk, and snack on almonds, figs (both high in calcium) and eat fresh leafy greens such as kale, bok choy, broccoli, parsley. You could eat a pita wrap filled with tahini sauce and tabbouli - coz sesame seeds (tahini) are very high, as is the parsley in tabbouli.

    If you find it too hard, take a supplement - that is what I do

  22. #122
    cherished emmapresley's Avatar
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    Question Re: I am having trouble getting enough calcium

    i'm a little concerned about my oldest daughter and her calcium intake.

    she absolutely shuns trying anything 'new'..she eats vegan food that i make at home, but is at her dads for meals a few days out of the week, whereshe eats meat, cheese, dairy etc.

    she does take a multivitamin supplement..but refuses to take one for teenagers as they are the size of a peg (obviously an overexaggeration but still huuuuge), but will alternate days taking one then two multivits for under 12's (if that makes sense)..that still doesn't provide her with anywhere near the recommended dose for a growing teenage girl. we live in a soft water area so there is naff all calciumin the water..and the types of foods that i'm aware of that are calcium rich she just will not eat. she just won't have fortified plant milks, nuts, tofu etc...and actively states she isn't remotely bothered about what effect it might have on her body.
    she will have some green veg, but struggles with it..though will eat more if i cunningly make it into soups.

    any suggestions..please?
    ahronli sed ah dunit so thid tek thuh cheyus graytuh offa mi nihbles

  23. #123

    Default Re: I am having trouble getting enough calcium

    We eat more than enough calcium in our family.

    We eat lots of greens, fortified tofu... but most of all, we have LOTS of Calcium and Vit D fortified Orange Juice (Tropicana is vegan) and Soymilk (Silk Extra has 35% of RDA per cup, and we have several cups a day each). Thats on top of fortified cereals (iron & calcium & other vitamins and minerals) and fortified breads and pasta and iodized salt... etc.

    The fortified stuff isn't the bulk of what we eat, but it makes us pretty secure in making sure that we don't have to worry about much in terms of nutrients.
    context is everything

  24. #124
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    Default Re: I am having trouble getting enough calcium

    I don't want to dissuade anyone from getting their calcium but it may be that vegans do not need as much calcium as flesh-eaters. Although these things are not well understood, research shows that excessive protein in the diet results in the body losing calcium.

    I'm no expert but my advice would be to do stregnth-training, i.e., weight-lifting, and your appetite will make sure that you consume all the calcium (and protein) you need.

  25. #125
    cedartree cedarblue's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am having trouble getting enough calcium

    Quote John View Post
    Although these things are not well understood, research shows that excessive protein in the diet results in the body losing calcium.

    I'm no expert but my advice would be to do stregnth-training, i.e., weight-lifting, and your appetite will make sure that you consume all the calcium (and protein) you need.

    form what i have read i would say that was right john. this panic that the medical profession have about women being encouraged to eat more calcium to stave off osteoporosis when they ought to be advised to cut down on the protein imo. def a little weight training would help the bones with retaining calcium too.

    calcium;
    best sources from top to bottom;
    almonds (873)
    kale
    dandelion greens
    brocolli
    brewers yeast (vegan?)
    marmite
    dried apricots
    wheatgerm
    walnuts
    raisins
    peanuts
    split peas/lima beans
    lettuce
    oatmeal
    baked beans
    cabbage
    brown rice
    brussel sprouts
    oranges
    onions
    ..........
    bananas have the lowest milligrams per 100gr (8)

  26. #126
    Karma Junkie vava's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am having trouble getting enough calcium

    I DID IT!

    And just from my breakfast/ lunch shake!

    1 tablespoon of sunflower seeds
    1 tablespoon of pumpkin seeds
    1 tablespoon of sesame seeds
    2 narnas
    3 dates
    750ml fortified soya milk!

    WOO HOO WOO HOO! thank you all so much for your input - v much appreciated! **dances off with big grin very pleased with self**

  27. #127
    Rentaghost Marrers's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am having trouble getting enough calcium

    Well done vava!

    Is the fortified OJ something your daughter might drink emmap?
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  28. #128
    cherished emmapresley's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am having trouble getting enough calcium

    yep marrers, thanks ..that is something she can drink loads of. from the list i see that, brocolli and brown rice..everything else i would have to sneak into things or she would flat out refuse.

    i went to see about calcium supplements today..bought some and saw it had some milk stuff in and had to take it back..not got my thinking head on today
    ahronli sed ah dunit so thid tek thuh cheyus graytuh offa mi nihbles

  29. #129
    AR Activist Roxy's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am having trouble getting enough calcium

    I don't ever meet 100% of the RDA for calcium on fitday either. I have bought a calcium supplement, but hardly remember to take it.

    I remember reading previously similar things to what John and Alex are talking about. So, I don't worry about it too much.

  30. #130

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    Default Re: I am having trouble getting enough calcium

    Emma you have to give these to your daughter - they are awesome

  31. #131
    cherished emmapresley's Avatar
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    Default Re: I am having trouble getting enough calcium

    thanks stickydate..there must be something similarly available in the uk though?
    ahronli sed ah dunit so thid tek thuh cheyus graytuh offa mi nihbles

  32. #132
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    Default Re: Calcium without supplements?

    I simply drink Fortified Orange Juice. One glass supposedly has 35% Calcium, which I would consider extremely good. ^_^ I like Soy Milk alone, but I am never consistent with the amount I drink.

  33. #133
    AR Activist Roxy's Avatar
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    Default Re: Calcium without supplements?

    Quote thecatspajamas1 View Post
    I never take calcium supplements. And I don't have any deficiencies that I know of!

    Here is a link that has a chart of the vegans foods with the highest calcium amounts: http://www.vrg.org/nutrition/calcium.htm#tofu They're all pretty common foods, so I don't see why we wouldn't be getting enough calcium unless we only ate junk foods. For example, a serving of calcium-set tofu gives 42% of your daily calcium needs.
    Thanks for that link. I've bookmarked it. I'm thinking of adding quite a lot more raw foods to my diet, so that table will come in very handy

  34. #134
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    Default Re: I am having trouble getting enough calcium

    sesame seeds!!

    and raw almonds

  35. #135

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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    almonds, broccoli, kale, spinach, parsley, all veg/herbs/leaf that are very green contain a lot of calcium.

  36. #136

    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    I believe oranges are high in calcium.
    - EDIT - though not as high as some other things, but good to know since you probably eat them anyway since they taste nice and contain a lot of vitamin C (a medium orange has about 5% daily rec. calcium)
    Last edited by Quantum Mechanic; Dec 20th, 2008 at 03:33 AM. Reason: forgot some stuff

  37. #137
    Mahk
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    I eat peppermint Tums, yes the antacid (actually CVS brand clones which I called to verify are vegan) as an inexpensive calcium supplement. Two have 400 mg which the label says is 40% of the DV, daily value.

  38. #138
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    ^You're not actually getting any of that calcium in Tums. It's going right through you, and could even increase your chances of stones. It's cheap for a reason. Look for a better quality calcium supplement, i.e. not carbonate. Dicalcium Malate, calcium citrate, etc. Also, if your not getting a 2:1 ratio of cal to mag, plus proper amounts of D and phosphorus, the calcium won't bind anyway. Rich dietary sources of magnesium are just as important everyday as those of calcium.

    Broccoli has as much calcium as cow's or soy milk. Plus, it's yummy!

  39. #139
    Mahk
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    As is mentioned in these articles, calcium carbonate (such as Tums) relies on stomach acid for proper absorption so it is best to take it with meals (and vitamin D).

    http://ag.arizona.edu/pubs/health/az1042.pdf
    http://www.calciuminfo.com/about/supplements.aspx
    http://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/calcium.asp

  40. #140

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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    My understanding, gleaned from 'Plant Based Nutrition and Health' is that its not just how many milligrams of calcium are in your diet, but what you eat it with, as Quantum Mechanic and Mzee have already said. To get maximum absorption, you need to eat calcium with other foods that are high in potassium, low in sodium and low in certain amino acids (the building blocks of protein)(I think, but can't guarantee its the sulphur containing amino acids eg I think methionine that leach calcium from bone). Oranges and brocolli both fill all those criteria for high calcium absorption. So a greater proportion of the calcium in the food is absorbed by bone. Whereas dairy milk is high in sodium, low in potassium and high in the wrong sort of amino acids, so proportionally much less is absorbed. I think I read that that is the reason for the absurdly high RDA of calcium in western countries - its because if you eat / drink shedloads of dairy, then you paradoxically need to have a higher intake of calcium. I have said all this from memory - I would recommend reading the book if you want an accurate version of it.

    I was developed a distateful degree of schadenfreude when a colleague of mine who is most sceptical about my diet developed osteoporosis. The osteoporosis clinic told her to cut out dairy food.

    Only baby elephants drink milk, but they grow into fine strapping animals capable of making some pretty impressive bones!

    V

  41. #141
    snivelingchild's Avatar
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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    Quote Mahk View Post
    As is mentioned in these articles, calcium carbonate such (as Tums) relies on stomach acid for proper absorption so it is best to take it with meals (and vitamin D).
    I've had 2 doctors warn my mom against taking TUMS for calcium because of the risk for stones. While eating tums with food may help it's absorption, citrate is still a much better form. I always recommend that people who chose to supplement with calcium also supplement mag/phos/D because if your levels are off, that calcium is just being excreted at best or forming stones at worst, which can be VERY painful. Also, liquid forms are better to take, and easier on the digestive system.

    I also suggest looking at the WHO's suggestions of calcium intake. Far too many people take too much because the dairy industries in the US have lobbied to have ridiculously high RDAs for calcium. Other countries have far lower recommendations, and the WHO suggests 300-500mg daily. Those who would want closer to 500 would be teenage girls and post-menopausal women. Young men would need closer to 300. Taking too much calcium can be very hard on the body, so you never want to take too much, and always take into account your food sources. Keeping a food diary for a typical week and calculating your vit/min levels are a good way to see what you consume to see how much you should supplement.

  42. #142

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    Default Re: I think i need more calcium

    And I forgot to add that other important things to avoid osteoporosis are
    - excercise - bones are living organs, constantly being destroyed and remodelled. The new architecture depends on the stresses and strains that have been put on the bones. Weight bearing excercise encourages strong bones
    - vit D - which may also be important in the prevention of other illnesses - malignancies and neurological disorders - though evidence in early stages
    - not too much protein
    - other minerals eg magnesium - but a healthy vegan diet should contain plenty

    V

  43. #143
    Stevie G karmafunk's Avatar
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    Default Calcium

    Does anyone know where i can get enough calcium? I don't drink soy because of the supposed health issues and also the deforestation in Argentina.
    Last edited by Korn; Mar 18th, 2010 at 06:28 AM. Reason: This was the first post in a similar thread

  44. #144

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    Default Re: Calcium

    If you are avoiding soy/tempeh products, you can get your calcium from these greens: kale, collards, broccoli, okra, bok choy, turnip, and mustard greens. Blackstrap molasses is another good source of calcium. Btw, I got those suggestions from the book Becoming Vegan by Brenda Davis & Vesanto Melina. It's a really good reference for nutritional needs as a vegan.


  45. #145
    Ex-admin Korn's Avatar
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    I will not eat anything that walks, swims, flies, runs, skips, hops or crawls.

  46. #146
    Stevie G karmafunk's Avatar
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    Default Re: Calcium

    That's a book that I think I need to buy. Thank you.

    Thanks for those references Korn. Much appreciated.

  47. #147
    Stevie G karmafunk's Avatar
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    Default Re: Calcium

    I just ordered a used copy from Amazon for 7. Bargain!

    Having looked at those links I can see I am not getting anywhere near enough Calcium. This is going to take some careful planning.

  48. #148
    Daffodil's Avatar
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    Default Re: Calcium

    Foods quite high in calcium per 100g



    Ready brek (Original)Seeds: Sesame Coco PopsPepper (Black)Nuts (Almonds)LinseedBasil (Fresh)Nuts (Brazil)Seeds: Hemp Parsley (raw)KaleMilk (Alpro)Spinach (raw)

  49. #149
    Stevie G karmafunk's Avatar
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    Default Re: Calcium

    Mmmm, ready brek. So glad thats vegan. Thank you.

  50. #150
    Daffodil's Avatar
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    Default Re: Calcium

    you're welcome. you need 1000-1300mg calcium a day (well a woman does anyway), that's all i've researched coz i am one lol

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