Calcium is a mineral, and vegans get their calcium from plant sources (just like the cows do). Some of the richest sources of calcium are leafy green vegetables such as silverbeet, spinach, watercress, dark green lettuces, kale and broccoli; almonds and other nuts; sesame and other seeds; and beans.
Listen to this very informative podcast episode by Colleen Patrick Goudreau about Calcium: Where do I get my calcium if I don’t drink cow’s milk?
There are foods that are fortified with calcium such as some tofu or soy milks (such as “Pureharvest Enriched Calcium Soy Milk”), but they are not mandatory if one is consuming enough of a variety of the whole plant food sources mentioned above. General guidelines indicate we need about 1000mgs to 1,800 mg a day of calcium, which can be met with a balanced vegan diet.
There is increasing evidence that stretching out one’s calcium intake over the day is beneficial. It is not necessary to supplement if one is vegan since there are plenty of plant-based source of calcium and calcium fortified vegan food, but if one chooses to supplement, some medical studies have revealed that taking large doses of calcium supplement has caused some calcification of the arteries. If you are busy and you feel your calcium intake is insufficient, you may require a supplement. Consider adding a very small amount of “Melrose Pure Calcium Lactate powder” in a few of your drinks throughout the day. It’s tasteless. You may also wish to snack on almonds at regular intervals.
Please note: Although most vegetables contain calcium, it is low density but the bioavailability of calcium from vegetables is generally high. An exception is spinach, which is high in oxalate, making the calcium virtually nonbioavailable. Some high-phytate foods, such as whole bran cereals, also may have poorly bioavailable calcium.
Please watch these videos about Calcium and plant-based diets from NutritionFacts.org. Disclaimer: Please note I do not endorse opinions, links or ads on this site)
Please note adequate levels of Vitamin D are important for calcium uptake. If you have low levels of Vitamin D in your system, this will effect your calcium levels. It is important to have your blood levels checked for Vitamin D every so often because there Vitamin D deficiency is widespread today. Vitamin D deficiency can not only lead to osteoporosis, but it can lead to many serious illness. If you search online “Vitamin D deficiency” there are many medical articles about the problems resulting in deficiency.
Please see this link from NutritionFacts.org which has a number of videos relating to Vitamin D deficiency. (Disclaimer: Please note I do not endorse opinions, links or ads on NutritionFacts.org)
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