MILK and CALCIUM
When you are enjoying your tasty ice cream treats perhaps you console yourself by saying: “At least I am getting my calcium.” But are you really? The latest research reveals that milk is not the ideal source of calcium.
The Harvard Nurses' Health Study, which followed 78,000 women over a 12-year period, found that those who got the most dairy calcium had no protection at all against osteoporosis. In fact, they suffered more fractures than women who avoided milk.
Why is milk not the best source of calcium? Three main reasons are:
v We do not have the digestive enzymes to properly digest and absorb the nutrients in milk, unlike calves, for whom cow’s milk is intended.
v Milk is very low in the mineral magnesium. Without magnesium, we cannot absorb the calcium. There is actually a problem with this unabsorbed calcium. The body can use it in harmful ways: building plaque in arteries and forming kidney stones.
v As we age, we are less able to absorb nutrients from food, specifically protein and minerals like calcium. So it won’t matter how much milk you drink – if you are not absorbing its nutrients.
Basically, there are two sides to calcium intake – eating foods with calcium and knowing that we are absorbing the calcium from the food. Good dietary sources of calcium include: green leafy vegetables, nuts, seeds and legumes. The issue of absorption is more difficult to determine. A Holistic Health Assessment from Health E Guide can help you determine if your diet contains nough calcium and more importantly if you are actually absorbing it.