What is the most abundant mineral in your body? The answer is calcium. It makes our bones and teeth healthy and plays a very important role in maintaining the proper function of muscles, in heart health, and in nerve health. This is precisely the reason why it is essential to have our daily calcium requirements met.
Sadly, many of us do not meet the recommended daily intake of calcium, mostly because a lot of us believe you can only get calcium from dairy sources. The truth of the matter is that there are a lot of non dairy sources that are also high in calcium.
Foods high in calcium
Here’s a list of calcium rich non dairy sources. Some of these might surprise you (in a good way):
- Beans: A cup of baked white beans has 154 mg of calcium. It earns plus points for being high in protein as well. Black eyed peas (the beans, not the band) have 185 mg in half a cup and is also filled with potassium and folate. Different kinds of beans have different levels of calcium content. However, the most calcium packed of them all are winged beans at 244 mg per cup.
- Nuts: Yes, nuts have calcium, too. Just a handful (¼ cup) of almonds have 72 mg of calcium.
- Leafy greens: Your mom was right to make you eat your green leafy vegetables They’re chock full of calcium
- Collard greens: one cup (190 grams) of cooked collard greens has 266 mg
- Bok choy: one cup has 74 mg
- Kale: one cup has 94 mg
- Soy, Edamame, and Tofu: Edamame are young soybeans - they’re boiled in their pods and are an exceptionally yummy and healthy snack. Tofu is made by coagulating soy milk and then pressing it into blocks.
- Soy milk: one cup has 300 mg
- Edamame: one cup has 100 mg
- Tofu: half a cup packs a whopping 861 mg - that’s already 86% of the RDI
- Sardines and canned salmon: These calcium goldmines are packed with that mineral - all thanks to their edible bones. 7 sardines fillets has about 300 mg of calcium and ½ a can of canned salmon has 232 mg. Don’t forget about the omega-3 fatty acids in these babies.
- Oranges and orange juice: Oranges - the real, round, juicy fruits - are a good source of calcium. They’re also an excellent source of Vitamin C, but you already knew that. 1 medium orange fruit contains 65 mg of calcium. Orange juice - the fortified kind - contains 500 mg of calcium in one cup! That’s already half of the RDI. Drink fruit juices in moderation. While they may be fortified with calcium and other nutrients, they may also be filled with sugar.