Calcium-Part 2: Where can I get my Calcium?

Examples of high-protein foods are tofu, dairy...

Examples of high-protein foods are tofu, dairy products, fish, and meat. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Food sources of Calcium

I have included a table of the amounts of calcium in different food types. This is a very general representation.  A more complete list can be found on the US Department of Agriculture’s Nutrient Database.

  • dairy products (milk, yogurt and cheese): this is difficult for lactose intolerant or lactose sensitive people. Some people may be concerned about the non-organic dairy products due to antibiotics injected into animals etc.
  • vegetables: chinese cabbage, kale and broccoli. These vegetables also have vitamin K2 and D which are also required for calcium absorption
  • Spinach: its bioavailability is poor[i]
  • Calcium fortified juice/grain/cereal
    Selected Food Sources of Calcium[ii]
    Food-Dairy Products mg per serving
    Yogurt, fruit-plain, low fat, 8 ounces

    338-415

    Chedder and Mozzarella (part skim)1.5 ounces

    307-333

    Milk (nonfat/2%/whole) 8 oz

    276-299

    Frozen yogurt(Vanilla:1/2cup), Cottage cheese(1% milk fat, 1 cup)

    103-138

    Cheese, cream, regular, 1 tablespoon

    14

    Sour cream, reduced fat, cultured, 2 tablespoons

    31

    Food-Fortified Products
    Orange juice, calcium-fortified, 6 ounces

    375

    Instant breakfast drink, various flavors and brands, powder prepared with water, 8 ounces

    105–250

    Ready-to-eat cereal, calcium-fortified, 1 cup

    100–1,000

    Food-Fish
    Sardines, canned in oil, with bones, 3 ounces

    325

    Salmon, pink, canned, solids with bone, 3 ounces

    181

    Food-Soy
    Soy beverage, calcium fortified, 8 ounces             80–500
    Tofu, firm, made with calcium sulfate, ½ cup*

    253

    Tofu, soft, made with calcium sulfate, ½ cup*

    138

    Food-Grain
    Bread, white, 1 slice

    73

    Bread, whole-wheat, 1 slice

    30

    Tortilla, corn, ready-to-bake/fry, one 6″ diameter

    46

    Tortilla, flour, ready-to-bake/fry, one 6″ diameter

    32

    Food-Vegetables
    Turnip greens, fresh, boiled, ½ cup

    99

    Kale, fresh, cooked, 1 cup

    94

    Kale, raw, chopped, 1 cup

    90

    Chinese cabbage, bok choi, raw, shredded, 1 cup

    74

    Broccoli, raw, ½ cup

    21

    Food-Others
    Pudding, chocolate, ready to eat, refrigerated, 4 ounces

    55

    Foods providing 20% or more of the DV (Daily Value) are considered to be high sources of a nutrient, but foods providing lower percentages of the DV also contribute to a healthy diet. Calcium content varies slightly by fat content; the more fat, the less calcium the food contains.
    * Calcium content is for tofu processed with a calcium salt. Tofu processed with other salts does not provide significant amounts of calcium.

    References:

    [i] http://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Calcium-HealthProfessional/

    [ii] U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service. 2011. USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 24. Nutrient Data Laboratory Home Page, http://www.ars.usda.gov/ba/bhnrc/ndl.

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3 Responses to Calcium-Part 2: Where can I get my Calcium?

  1. Pingback: Calcium-Part 1: What kind should I take? I am confused!!!! | Ask Dr. James

  2. Pingback: Is it possible to take TOO MUCH calcium? | Ask Dr. James

  3. Pingback: Calcium Part3: What affects Calcium absorption? | Ask Dr. James

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