Ditching Dairy: Plant Based Calcium
One of our most frequently asked questions is ‘how much calcium do Pureharvest milks contain per serve?’
First of all we do have a few milks that are enriched with calcium, which you can see here:
We use Aquamin to fortify our milks, which is a naturally derived from plant seaweed.
However, the point of this blog post is to inform you that the milk you consume is not the only way to ensure you are getting adequate amounts of calcium in your diet. Contrary to popular belief, dairy foods are not the only source of calcium. We can actually get adequate calcium in our diet from non-dairy alternatives (1).
What is calcium and why do we need it?
Calcium is an essential nutrient for healthy bones as well as healthy brain and heart function. Low calcium levels and calcium stores are linked to serious health concerns such as osteoporosis which can lead to bone fracture and serious injury (2). In today’s food industry the most commonly talked about sauce of calcium is dairy. Dairy is in fact a great source of calcium, however many people cannot or chose not to consume dairy as part of their diets.
Contrary to popular belief we do not have to consume dairy to reach our recommended dietary intake of 1,000 – 1,300 mg for adult men and women (3). There are numerous plant based sources that are very rich in calcium. We’ve listed some of our favourites below.
Great sources of plant-based calcium
- Tofu: we have some great recipes that include tofu including Tofu Katsu Curry & Vegan Pad Thai
- Sesame seeds: there are so many ways to add sesame seeds to your diet. Tahini is a great way too.
- Leafy greens – Spinach, Collard Greens, Turnip greens and mustard greens . Simply eat as a side to any meal. These greens are greatly lightly sautéed with a little bit of olive oil and a pinch of salt.
If you are consuming a varied and balanced diet that includes the above foods on a regular basis, not consuming dairy milk as part of your diet should not be a problem.
However, please do consult a health care professional if you are concerned. We always advise people to speak to qualified nutritionists and dieticians.
- Nutrient Reference Values for Australia and New Zealand, Executive Summary