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How to Get Calcium Without Dairy?: What You Can Include in Your Diet

How to Get Calcium Without Dairy?: What You Can Include in Your Diet

It is true that cheeses, cream, and yogurt are a great source of calcium, but not everyone can consume dairy. People who are lactose intolerant tend to have an upset stomach whenever they consume anything that contains milk, especially from cows.

People with lactose intolerance are predisposed to low calcium intake because of their limited options. But that doesn’t mean they can’t have their daily requirement of calcium. Calcium is not only derived from dairy products. There are many ways on how to get calcium without dairy.

How to Get Calcium Without Dairy

Here are some dairy-free sources of calcium that can supply your needs.

Vegetables

Turnip Greens (Dahon ng Singkamas)

Turnip greens boiled without salt contain about 137mg of calcium in a 100g serving. They are packed with Omega-3 which aids in fighting inflammation, improving eyesight, and balancing cholesterol levels.

Bok Choy

One-half cup of bok choy can supply 80mg of calcium. Aside from calcium, bok choy also contains vitamin K, which is an important blood-clotting agent that can aid in healing especially in injury and surgery. Bok choy also possesses sulfur-based compounds that can fight off oxidation, keeping the cells healthy.

Broccoli

One cup of broccoli can supply 60mg of calcium. Broccoli also contains Vitamin C which can improve metabolism, and boost immunity. Broccoli also has anti-aging and anti-inflammatory properties.

Kale or Kina

One cup of cooked kale can supply 150 mg of calcium. Kale contains vitamin K, which is good for people who are healing from an injury. Kale is also high in Vitamins A and C which is good for the skin, vision, and immunity.

Okra

Okra contains about 82mg of calcium per 100 grams serving. It contains a lot of vitamins and it also contains fiber, which aids in digestion and slows down the release of glucose which is great for diabetics.

Spinach

Cooked spinach contains about 245mg of calcium per cup but only a fraction of this is absorbed by the body because of the oxalates found in spinach. Alternating spinach with other calcium-rich greens is proven to be beneficial.

Collared Greens (Bersa)

Half a cup of cooked collard greens contains about 175 mg of calcium. Collared greens contain vitamins and minerals that can be beneficial against cancer development in the breast, bladder, colon, lungs, and ovaries.

Seeds, Nuts, and Beans

Baked Beans

There is about 100mg of calcium in a serving of baked beans. Baked beans are a great source of plant-based protein and fiber. Studies also show that baked beans can lower cholesterol and improve blood cell production.

Kidney Beans

In one cup of kidney beans, there could be as much as 359 mg of calcium. Kidney beans also contain a good amount of magnesium which can help prevent high blood pressure, diabetes, muscle spasms, and migraines.

Almonds

A cup of whole almonds has 246 mg of calcium. This healthy snack also contains healthy fats, fiber, Vitamin E, and magnesium. Almonds are great at satiating hunger pangs and promoting weight loss.

Sesame Seeds

Sesame seeds are one of the best dairy-free sources of calcium with at least 87mg of calcium for every tablespoon. These also contain plant compounds that lower cholesterol and promote better blood pressure control.

Chia Seeds

How to get calcium without dairy? Chia seeds are highly rich in calcium, containing about 136mg for every 2 tablespoons of chia seeds. They absorb water quickly which is why they are typically prepared with liquid foods and drinks. Chia seeds have very little flavor, which makes them easy to add to almost any dish.

Soybeans

Roasted soybean nuts contain 230mg of calcium while boiled green soybeans contain 180mg of calcium. Soybeans are an excellent source of fiber and protein.

Fish

Swordfish

Swordfish contains about 6mg of calcium per 100-gram serving but it contains a lot of vitamin D, which promotes calcium absorption resulting in good bone health. Getting enough of vitamin D is also essential in how to get calcium without dairy.

Tuna Fish

Tuna is another fish loaded with vitamin D that can aid in calcium absorption. This fish contains about 37mg of calcium every 100 grams.

Pink canned salmon with edible bones

A can of pink salmon contains about 181mg of calcium. Salmon also contains Omega-3 and selenium which help in maintaining proper thyroid function.

Canned sardines with edible bones

A can of sardines contains about 325 mg of calcium. Sardines are also an excellent source of protein, vitamin B12 and Omega-3 fatty acids.

Processed Food

Tofu

100 grams of tofu contains about 350mg of calcium. Aside from being a popular substitute for meat, tofu also contains several vitamins and minerals including iron, phosphorus, and manganese. Eating tofu regularly can reduce the risk of obesity and cardiovascular diseases.

Orange Juice fortified with calcium and vitamin D

For people who might not have the luxury to prepare their meals or have calcium-rich food available, orange juice fortified with calcium and vitamin D can be a great alternative. This juice is not just an excellent example of dairy-free sources of calcium, but it is also rich in vitamin C. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that keeps the cells healthy.

Key Takeaways

Milk and dairy products are not the only sources of calcium. Calcium is found in many other foods such as vegetables, seeds, beans, and fish. Vegetables that are rich in calcium include kale, okra, and spinach. Seeds and beans are also an excellent source of calcium. Other food such as canned fish, tofu, and fortified orange juice can be consumed as a source of calcium. Consult your dietitian or nutritionist for more info.

Learn more about Nutrition Facts here.

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Sources

Best nondairy sources of calcium, https://www.health.harvard.edu/healthy-eating/best-nondairy-sources-of-calcium, Accessed February 8, 2021

Calcium in Non-Dairy Foods, https://www.iffgd.org/diet-treatments/calcium-in-non-dairy-foods.html, Accessed February 8, 2021

Non-Dairy Sources of Calcium, https://www.urmc.rochester.edu/childrens-hospital/nutrition/calcium.aspx, Accessed February 8, 2021

7 Non-Dairy, Calcium-Rich Foods for Your Teeth, https://www.mouthhealthy.org/en/nutrition/food-tips/8-non-dairy-calcium-rich-foods-for-your-teeth, Accessed February 8, 2021

Calcium in the Vegan Diet, https://www.vrg.org/nutrition/calcium.php, Accessed February 8, 2021

Vegans, Meat-Eaters & Calcium: The Ultimate Guide, https://plantbasednews.org/your-health/faqs-and-mythbusting/vegans-meat-eaters-calcium-ultimate-guide/, Accessed February 8, 2021

Soybeans and soy foods, https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/healthyliving/soybeans Accessed February 8, 2021

20 Surprising Health Benefits Of Sardines, https://www.lifehack.org/291464/20-surprising-health-benefits-sardines, Accessed February 8, 2021

12 Health Benefits Of Salmon For The Heart, Brain, And Much More, https://safebeat.org/cardiac/heart_health/12_health_benefits_of_salmon_for_the_heart_brain_and_much_more/, Accessed February 8, 2021

Calcium and Vitamin D in Florida Orange Juice, https://www.floridacitrus.org/oj/health-nutrition/oj-nutrition-facts/calcium-and-vitamin-d/, Accessed February 8, 2021

5 Amazing Health Benefits Of Collard Greens, https://blackdoctor.org/collard-green-health-benefits/, Accessed February 8, 2021

Are Baked Beans as Healthy as You Think?, https://www.ahealthiermichigan.org/2015/07/27/baked-beans-healthy/, Accessed February 8, 2021

Seed of the month: Sesame seeds, https://www.health.harvard.edu/heart-health/seed-of-the-month-sesame-seeds, Accessed February 8, 2021

Chia Seeds, https://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/food-features/chia-seeds/, Accessed February 8, 2021

 

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Written by Hazel Caingcoy Updated May 14
Fact Checked by Hello Doctor Medical Panel
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