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 Health Hint #112
Adopt a Bone-Builder Diet
Excerpted from "A Year of Health Hints"
365 Practical Ways to Feel Better and Live Longer

Many people assume their bones stop growing when they become adults. Not so. Bone tissue is continuously dissolving and re-forming. One way to maintain strong bones is to eat foods rich in calcium.

Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body, but your body can't manufacture it: You have to get all the calcium you need from food. Dairy products such as milk, yogurt, cheese, ice milk, and pudding made with milk are storehouses of calcium. (An 8-ounce serving of milk contains about 300 milligrams of calcium.) Milk and milk products also contain vitamin D and other components that help your body absorb calcium, so dietitians recommend two servings of dairy products a day.

Other sources of calcium include green leafy vegetables, cooked beans, fruit, grain products, canned sardines, and salmon with bones. Some foods are fortified with calcium, examples include some orange and apple juices, ready-to-eat cereals and breads.

Use the following table, Food Sources of Calcium, to plan a diet that meets your needs for calcium. You can determine how much calcium you need by consulting the table, A Guide to Calcium Needs. This table was established by the Food and Nutrition Board of the National Academy of Sciences.

Food Sources of Calcium

Swiss cheese 2 ounces 544
Provolone cheese 2 ounces 428
Monterey Jack cheese 2 ounces 424
Yogurt, low-fat 1 cup 415
Cheddar cheese 2 ounces 408
Muenster cheese 2 ounces 406
Colby cheese 2 ounces 388
Brick cheese 2 ounces 382
Sardines, Atlantic, drained 3 ounces 372
American cheese 2 ounces 348
Ricotta cheese, part-skim 1/2 cup 337
Milk, skim 1 cup 302
Mozzarella cheese 2 ounces 294
Buttermilk 1 cup 285
Limburger cheese 2 ounces 282
Ice milk, soft-serve 1 cup 274
Salmon, sockeye, drained 3 ounces 271
Orange juice, calcium fortified 6 ounces 225
Ice cream 1 cup 176
Ice milk 1 cup 176
Tofu 3 ounces 174
Pizza, cheese 1 medium slice 144
Blackstrap molasses 1 tablespoon 137
Broccoli, raw, cut 1 cup 136
Soy flour, defatted 1/2 cup 120
Almonds 1/4 cup 100
Broccoli, cooked, cut 1/2 cup 89
Soybeans, cooked 1/2 cup 88
Parmesan cheese, grated 1 tablespoon 86
Collard greens, cooked 1/2 cup 74
Dandelion greens, cooked 1/2 cup 74
Mustard greens, cooked 1/2 cup 52
Kale, cooked 1/2 cup 47
Chick-peas, cooked 1/2 cup 40

SOURCES: Adapted from Agriculture Handbook Nos. 8, 8-1, 456 (Washington, D.C.: Department of Agriculture).

A Guide to Calcium Needs

Children (1-10 years) 800
Teenagers (11-24 years) 1,200
Adults (25 + years) 800
Pregnant and nursing women 1,200
Pregnant and nursing teenagers 1,600

*RDAs are specific dietary recommendations by age and sex categories.

 About The Author
This article has been taken from Healthier at Home® – Your Complete Guide to Symptoms, Solutions & Self-Care, a book published by......more
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