“Calcium builds strong bones…” a phrase we have all grown up hearing but why is calcium important and what foods contain calcium? Are there fruits high in calcium and when thinking where we can get it in our diet, how can we start including those foods today?
What is Calcium and Why is It Important?
Calcium is a mineral found in many foods and one that is important for us to consume. Stored primarily in human teeth and bones, calcium is the most abundant mineral in the human body and has many important functions including nerve transmission, blood clotting, muscle contraction, and supporting bone health and strength. Adequate calcium intake is important for health and when we do not consume enough calcium through our diet, our body attempts to regulate its own levels and is forced to pull calcium out of our bones. We want to avoid this because when our body pulls calcium out of our bones, our bones begin to lose their strength and are more prone to fracture.
How much Calcium Do We Need?
The current RDA, or “recommended daily allowance,” for calcium is 1000 mg/day for an adult. Though supplements are one way to meet the RDA for calcium, there are also plenty of foods and beverages out there that are naturally high in calcium as well!
What Foods Contain Calcium?
There are a few foods that may come to mind when you think of high calcium foods. Dairy products like milk, cheese, yogurt, and kefir are popular calcium sources and contain roughly 30% of the RDA per serving. If you cannot comfortably enjoy dairy, many dairy alternatives have been fortified with calcium to ensure you are not missing out on this important mineral. Not a milk drinker? Not a problem! There are plenty of high calcium fruits and vegetables to choose from as well. Not only are Orchard Choice and Sun-Maid California Dried Figs delicious but they are also high in calcium with each serving containing 12% of the RDA! Other high foods include collard greens, soybeans, broccoli, bok-choy, kale, oranges, and sardines or salmon canned with bones.
Include high calcium foods in your diet, today!
Are you looking to increase calcium in your diet? Try out this delicious yogurt bowl to get an early start on your calcium for the day!
Toasted Pear + Fig Jam Yogurt Bowl
- 10 Orchard Choice or Sun-Maid California Dried Figs , stems removed
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 pear , chopped into 1-inch pieces
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon neutral oil
- 1 1/2 cup vanilla Greek yogurt
Make the Fig Jam
- Using an emulsion blender, blend 10 California Dried Figs with 1/4 cup of water to desired consistency.
Assemble Yogurt Bowls
- Place a large saucepan over medium heat. Once warm, pour in oil. When it shimmers, stir in the pears. Sprinkle cinnamon onto the pears and cook until toasted, about 10 minutes. Be careful to not over-crowd the pears.
- Place 3/4 cup of Greek yogurt into each bowl. Top each bowl with half of the toasted pears and 1/4 cup of the fig jam. Enjoy!