Calcium is one of the most essential nutrients needed by our body for teeth and bone health is no secret. But calcium does so much more. This mineral also helps in maintaining blood pressure, keeps the blood vessels healthy and helps in preventing insulin resistance that could lead to Type 2 diabetes.
Here’s a fun fact : Calcium is the most abundant mineral found in our body and one needs around 500-600 mg of calcium per day. Which means the diet for an average person should be full of calcium rich foods. Top list of foods high in calcium include a glass of milk, cheese and yoghurt – all dairy products. Its time to look beyond the dairy section at the supermarket (stop bothering the cows). Here are the top 8 non-dairy calcium rich foods.
You guessed it right: This meat textured vegetarian substitute is made from dried soya beans which are then ground and boiled. It is packed with calcium and also contains abundant amount of proteins and minimal fats. Use it to substitute paneer in your salads and dishes. For a dairy free vegan meal, Tofu is ideal. Up for a scrumptious tofu dinner tonight?
Fact: ½ a cup contains 861mg
If you are a sardine lover, this calcium rich food is for you. Apart from providing a hefty dose of omega 3 fatty acids that are fantastic for heart health, this fish is packed with calcium as well. And quite a lot of it!. Add some small fillets in a salad or eat them straight out of the can.
Fact: 7 sardines contain approximately 321mg
After tofu, soymilk could not be far behind. For those who are lactose intolerant or who do not prefer cow’s milk, this is the perfect substitute of calcium rich food for you. You can add some soymilk to your cereal or morning coffee instead of regular cow milk and run through the day without worrying about osteoporosis.
Fact: 1 cup contains 300 mg
- Canned salmon
There’s nothing fishy about this! A great way to boost your calcium from food without burning a hole in your pocket. But here’s the thing : all the calcium is stored in the bones so they need to be mashed with the meat. Thankfully, canning food softens the bones so that they can be mashed.
Fact: ½ Canned salmon (with bones) contains 232 mg
- White beans
These legumes are light to digest and contain a lot of calcium as well. Add it your salad or a pasta dish with green veggies. Their high protein content will improve your skin and hair health too!
Fact: 1 cup of canned white beans contains 191 mg
- Black Eyed peas
Fact: ½ cup (canned) contain 185 mg
- Dried figs
For those with a sweet tooth,this dried fruit is loaded with calcium, antioxidants and fiber. Eat them after a meal to improve digestion or make a jam or simply satisfy your sweet tooth.
Fact: 8 whole dried figs contain 107 mg.
So stock up your kitchen with these and you can bid farewell to dairy products!