Calcium has suddenly become the buzzword for us. Its in advertisements, food labels, chocolates, doctor recommendations, neighbourhood discussions, office gossips on self-care everywhere!
Up till now, we have associated calcium with our childhood days, when mumma used to run after us with a glass of milk, lecturing about strong teeth, strong bones, etc. or with the older ones of our family who have the jodo mein dard.
The reality is that women are in most need of this bone-building element, something that we have missed out on all our lives! Indeed our need for calcium is far greater than our male counterparts. (It is another story that all the media has also suddenly waken up to this fact!).
Calcium is a mineral that, even before birth, plays a significant role in almost all our body functions, including the development and health of our teeth and bones, and ultimately in protecting the body against debilitating bone loss as we age. It is recommended that, in addition to a healthy diet, adult women should have a daily supplemental calcium intake of 1000 to 1200 mg before menopause and 1300 to 1500 mg after menopause.
Although, it would be ideal if these recommended amounts could be obtained through the nutrients in the food we eat, the fact is that most of you lead a fast-paced, pressure-packed life that makes this difficult.
As you age, your need for calcium continues to be at the forefront of your health concerns. You will generally begin feeling the need for calcium after the age of 30.
After menopause, you lose about 2 to 5 percent of bone mass per year for about five years, after which the bone loss continues but at a somewhat slower rate (It is that is still more rapid than during the premenopausal years). When the loss of bone density becomes serious, bones become brittle, fragile and are more likely to break during even a minor fall.
This means, not just children and grandmas, but even young and middle-aged women need a good dose of calcium everyday. Its deficiency can place you at a risk of osteoporosis, other bone diseases and stunted growth. A womans midlife bones are much stronger if she has had adequate calcium intake during her teens.
Thus, being a woman, you must pay close attention to your calcium intake. And enjoy a healthy and STRONG life all along!