Indeed, there are so many advertisements for calcium supplement products that consumers will be dizzy by the publicity of merchants: the amount of calcium is large! Vitamin D! Collagen! It tastes good! Good absorption! …… Ask experts which one to buy, opinions seem to be not unified.
First of all, the following questions should be clarified:
- Do you and your family really need calcium supplements? How are your eating habits? Is the target children, young women, middle-aged men or elderly women? How is the digestion and absorption capacity?
Calcium supplement depends on the cause of calcium deficiency and physical condition.
If it is because of insufficient dietary calcium intake, the first consideration should be to increase the supply of calcium-containing food.
The main sources of calcium supply in the diet are:
- Milk (milk, yogurt, cheese) Bean products (brine tofu, gypsum tofu, dried tofu, etc.) Dark green leafy vegetables (rape, pakchoi, kale, etc.) sesame paste, nuts, small fish with bones, shrimps and shellfish, etc.
If you indulge in your bad eating habits and only rely on calcium tablets to solve them, the result may be: the amount of calcium is enough, but other factors related to bone health are insufficient. For example, if potassium, magnesium, vitamin K, vitamin C, etc. are not enough, bone health is also difficult to improve.
If the calcium supply in the diet is really not sufficient, or the calcium deficiency is obvious, calcium nutrition is needed to supplement calcium.
The following points may be noted:
1. Set your own calcium supplement target reasonably,
If there is no milk, the average calcium intake in the diet of Chinese residents is about 400 milligrams, while the recommended calcium intake for adults is 800 milligrams, and the recommended intake for mothers over 50 years old, expectant mothers and nursing mothers is 1,000 milligrams.
Therefore, please supplement calcium reasonably according to your specific dietary conditions.
- For most people, 400 mg is more appropriate. However, if there is sufficient milk (more than 300ml) in the usual diet and more dark green vegetables (more than 500g), combined with other daily diets, the intake of 800 mg of calcium can be reached without additional calcium supplement.
2. Pay attention to the calcium content in the product
Neither what product can be pure calcium, but some calcium salt, such as calcium carbonate or calcium citrate.
You know, 1 gram of calcium carbonate contains only about 400 milligrams of calcium.
The vast majority of calcium supplements will directly indicate the amount of calcium contained in them, but it is also possible that some products write the total amount of calcium compounds.
The two are not the same thing.
If you don’t understand, you can ask the pharmacy staff.
3. Don’t be superstitious about [vitamin D] advertising
Vitamin D can help calcium to be absorbed by the human body. Therefore, almost all calcium supplement products on the market are added with vitamin D. In other words, adding vitamin D is not the advantage of a few calcium supplement products, but the common practice of such products.
Even if there is no advertising, it does not mean that the product does not contain vitamin D. If you don’t believe it, look at the ingredient list on the product package.
4. Consider the cost performance of calcium supplement products
In addition to vitamin D, some calcium supplement products add other components related to bone health, which have the function of cooperating with each other, such as vitamin K, vitamin C, collagen, etc.
However, whether it is worth buying depends on whether the price of the product is reasonable.
For example, if the price of a certain product is too high due to the addition of vitamin C or K, it is more cost-effective to buy cheaper calcium tablets and then buy a bottle of multivitamin to accompany it.
5. Good taste does not necessarily have good effect.
Some calcium supplement products claim to be added with milk, fruit juice, etc., which may taste better, but they are not [Gao Da Shang].
For example, fruity calcium tablets are often used as calcium supplements for children. Take a closer look at the ingredients, but sugar, citric acid, essence and other things are added to improve the taste, while sugar and essence have no health benefits for what. Even if it is real fruit juice, the amount of a small grain cannot play an actual health role.
If children eat sour and sweet calcium tablets as sugar and eat many tablets at a time, it is really not a good thing for what. Excessive calcium may cause side effects, so special care must be taken.
Attention, put calcium tablets where children cannot find them and supply them according to the quantity every day.
6. Don’t pursue calcium tablets with particularly high calcium content.
It is best to choose a small amount of calcium tablets of 100 ~ 300 milligrams and take them two or three times a day. For example, 200 milligrams once in the morning and 200 milligrams once in the evening.
Excessive intake at one time may reduce the utilization rate.
Relevant medical reviews on calcium supplement point out that it is not recommended to supplement more than 500 milligrams of calcium at a time.
7. For the elderly and children, choose calcium supplement products that are easy to swallow.
- Small slender calcium tablets: In order to avoid dysphagia or getting stuck in the esophagus, The elderly should choose each grain with a smaller volume. Calcium tablets with relatively slender shapes. Small chewable tablets: Children, too, can choose small or chewable calcium tablets. Children should have adult care when eating to avoid choking into the trachea. Powdery calcium supplements: children and the elderly can also choose powdery calcium supplements, which are mixed in porridge, soup, paste and other liquid foods. It is safer and convenient to drink.
8. It is best to take calcium tablets while eating.
This can minimize the impact on the digestive tract and is not easy to cause stomach discomfort or constipation after taking calcium tablets.
Calcium, vitamin D and vitamin K are nutrients, not common drugs. They are normal ingredients in food, so they should not be taken on an empty stomach or half an hour before or after meals.
Take one tablet immediately after the meal, even during the meal.
9. Take calcium tablets and eat bean products and milk separately.
There is already a lot of calcium in milk and bean products, and the absorption rate per unit time may decrease when the total amount of calcium is large.
However, calcium tablets are very suitable for eating with fruits and vegetables, because vitamin C in fruits and vegetables is conducive to the use of calcium. Although oxalic acid is found in a few astringent vegetables, blanching can remove most oxalic acid and will not obviously affect the use of calcium.
10. For people with low gastric acid, please choose [Calcium Organic Acid] products
This suggestion is suitable for patients with atrophic gastritis or the elderly with dyspepsia.
These people can consider preferring calcium citrate and other organic acid calcium products to replace calcium carbonate, because such products do not need so much gastric acid to help calcium dissolve out and become ions.
However, calcium carbonate products are not absolutely unusable.
Taking a smaller dose of calcium tablets together with acidic foods such as fruit juice, vinegar and vitamin C tablets can also help calcium ions dissolve in the stomach.
Finally, there are three important pieces of advice:
1. Calcium tablets are not a substitute for a reasonable diet.
Whether calcium can be left after intake depends on the amount of potassium, magnesium and sodium in the diet and the amount of protein.
Excessive fish and egg food will increase the excretion of calcium in urine, excessive fat will affect calcium absorption, and excessive salt will also increase the excretion of calcium. However, if you eat enough fruits and vegetables, beans and potatoes, the supply of potassium and magnesium is sufficient, which is conducive to the utilization of calcium.
For men, attention should also be paid to quitting smoking and limiting alcohol, because they will hinder the normal maintenance function of bone.
2. While supplementing calcium, we should also pay attention to the problem of poor digestion and absorption.
Serious calcium deficiency and osteoporosis are often caused not only by unreasonable diet and insufficient exercise, but also by dyspepsia.
The release of calcium ions requires the help of gastric acid and is finally absorbed in the small intestine. Loss of appetite, insufficient gastric acid, inflammation of digestive tract, frequent diarrhea in loose stool and other conditions may all mean that the body’s ability to absorb calcium decreases.
3. Exercise is an irreplaceable bone strengthening measure.
The physiological mechanism of the human body is to [use in and waste out]. If you sit still for a long time, the body’s investment in bone construction will be reduced.
Therefore, it is difficult for both men and women to make calcium supplements work if they only pay attention to diet but do not do exercises that have slight stimulation to bones. Weight-bearing exercises, jumping exercises, running and striding are all beneficial to bone health.
Responsible Editor: Fu Ting