Skip to content
My WebMD Sign In, Sign Up

Getting Enough Calcium

Font Size

Topic Overview

Calcium is very important for building and maintaining strong, healthy bones. The amount of calcium needed changes as a person grows older. Most Americans get only half the calcium they need from their diet.

The recommended daily calcium intake for adults ages 19 to 50 is 1,000 mg a day, increasing to 1,200 mg a day for adults older than 50. Calcium is found in many foods, including dairy products such as milk or yogurt. Most postmenopausal women need to take calcium supplements because they do not get enough calcium in their daily diets.

Recommended Related to Vitamins & Supplements

Evening Primrose Oil

Evening primrose is a plant that's native to Europe and North America. It has a long history of medical uses. Native Americans, for example, used its leaves, roots, and seedpods in preparations for hemorrhoids, bruises, wounds, and skin problems. Evening primrose oil contains an omega-6 essential fatty acid that is necessary for good health. However, there is limited evidence that taking evening primrose oil supplements will provide any health benefits. The results of studies on evening primrose...

Read the Evening Primrose Oil article > >

  • Eating foods high in calcium, such as yogurt, cheese, and dark green vegetables like broccoli, is the best way to get the calcium you need.
  • Taking calcium supplements is another way to increase calcium in your diet. But you need to take supplements that can be absorbed in your stomach. Calcium supplements with vitamin D may slightly increase your risk of kidney stones.

To increase your body's ability to absorb calcium, take calcium supplements with milk or with foods that contain vitamin D. Taking calcium without vitamin D probably is not beneficial.1

Avoid eating bran (such as bran cereals) at the same time as foods that are high in calcium. Bran decreases the amount of calcium absorbed by the body.

1

WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

Last Updated: November 06, 2012
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
Next Article:

Hot Topics

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors

WebMD Video: Now Playing

Click here to wach video: Dirty Truth About Hand Washing

Which sex is the worst about washing up? Why is it so important? We’ve got the dirty truth on how and when to wash your hands.

Click here to watch video: Dirty Truth About Hand Washing

Popular Slideshows & Tools on WebMD

tea
What you should eat.
Woman sitting in front of UV lights
Is yours working?
woman using breath spray
What's causing yours?
colon xray
Get the facts.
MS Overview
Recognizing symptoms.
bowl of yogurt with heart shape
Eat for a healthy heart.
woman doing pushups
To help you get fit.
Colored x-ray of tooth decay
Know what to look for.
Woman sitting with child
Do you know the symptoms?
fruit drinks
Foods that can help you focus.
Sad dog and guacamole
Don't feed this to your dog.
Thyroid exam
See how much you know.

Women's Health Newsletter

Find out what women really need.