We’ve all either heard of a lot of people needing to take calcium or we’ve heard ourselves how important it is for us to have enough calcium. Calcium is essential for building healthy bones, teeth and ensures our muscles and body work properly.
Some of us may have been even nagged by our health care professionals that we need to boost our calcium intake. Adults require about 1,000 milligrams of calcium per day, which is equivalent to 3 glasses of milk. However, some of us are not so good at consuming milk in our diet, and if you’re lactose intolerant or vegan, or simply don’t like the taste of milk, you’ll be in the ranks of people with lower calcium.
Thankfully, we can get calcium in other forms. Not all calcium comes from dairy products. So, that’s indeed good news for those who are not fans of milk or who just can’t tolerate milk.
Here are Top 10 Dairy Free Calcium Rich Foods:
Calcium content: 86 milligrams in 2 cups raw
This vegetable contains nearly twice the amount of vitamin C compared to an orange! Research shows that diets high in cruciferous vegetables like broccoli may be linked to a lower risk of certain types of cancer, including colon and bladder cancer.
Calcium content: 98 milligrams in 1 cup cooked
Edamame is a nutritional powerhouse. They are basically immature soybeans in the pod and it is among the few non-animal foods that is a complete protein, meaning it contains all nine essential amino acids and is full of fiber.
3. Bok Choy
Calcium content: 74 milligrams per 1 cup shredded
This veg is super low in calories as a cup sets you back just 9 calories. It’s also a great source of vitamin A, vitamin C, and potassium. Bok choy is also very reasonably priced in our local markets and easily accessible. It cooks fast, which is another bonus for busy cooks.
Calcium content: 74 milligrams in one large orange and 27 milligrams in a cup of orange juice
Oranges are infamous for their immune-boosting vitamin C content. And another great thing about this wonderful fruit is that they’re also low in calories and brimming with antioxidants.
Calcium content: 351 milligrams in one 3.75-ounce can
Not everyone likes these little sea creatures. However, don’t be scared of sardines. These salty little fish can pack a punch of flavour to sandwiches, salads and pastas. They’re an amazing source of vitamin B-12, which is a key nutrient for brain and nervous system health. And on top of that, sardines also contain vitamin D, which is essential for bone health and notoriously difficult to get through food.
6. Canned Salmon
Calcium content: 232 milligrams in half a can
If you can’t find environmentally friendly farmed salmon, try canned salmon, which is a cheaper alternative. Half a can provides 44% your daily calcium needs, as well as an amazing 38 grams of belly-flattening protein.
7. Okra aka Ladies Fingers
Calcium content: 82 milligrams in 1 cup
Okra contains constipation-fighting insoluble fiber, as well as vitamin B6 and folate. It’s easily available here in our local markets and supermarkets, plus, it’s affordable. There are so many ways we can do this vegetable justice so cook up an okra storm and get that calcium boost!
Calcium content: 434 milligrams per half cup
Tofu is a staple in most of our homes. As a vegetarian source of protein, it’s a great source of calcium. The wonder of tofu is, that it’s also affordable, easily found in shops and markets and most of all, it’s incredibly versatile – taking on the flavour of whatever else you cook with it.
Calcium content: 75 milligrams per ounce (about 23 whole almonds)
Almonds are among the best nuts for your health, containing about 12% of your necessary daily protein. It is also rich in vitamin E and potassium. Although almonds are fattening, it’s the good kind of fat that helps lower your bad cholesterol levels. So, enjoy almonds but remember, everything in moderation.
10. White Beans
Calcium content: 63 milligrams in 1/2 cup cooked
These little beans are a little bit like magic beans because they are rich in fiber, protein, and iron. They’re also one of the best nutritional sources of potassium. Additionally, they contain resistant starch, a healthy carb that boost metabolism.