10 Plant-based calcium rich foods
The average adult needs at calcium rich foods, foods high in calcium, calcium rich food, foods rich in calcium, high calcium foods 1,000mg of calcium, but if you’ve recently turned vegan and are looking to finds yours from plant-based foods, just where do you look?
Calcium is essential for the maintenance of our bones and teeth; without enough of it, we could be at risk of developing osteoporosis and tooth decay.
As well as this, calcium is essential to helping our blood clot. It also helps to regulate enzymes, keeps cell membranes functioning optimally, improves muscle contraction, and also helps with nerve conduction.
Lots of new converts to vegan sometimes get a little bit apprehensive at first when they try to think of alternative sources of calcium. The truth is that there are numerous plant-based sources for this vital mineral, and the chances are that you’ve probably been eating them all your life without realising it. Let’s take a look:
Kale is the Queen of Greens, and has also been termed “The New Beef”. This is because it does wonders for our bodies, and has a higher iron content even than spinach, which basically means that Popeye has already converted.
Kale should also be on your shopping lists from now on, as this greener than green plant has a high calcium content. Just 100g of kale contains 150mg of calcium, which means that kale contains more calcium per grams than milk. Isn’t that amazing?!
Bok choy, which is also sometimes referred to more simply as Chinese cabbage, is a Chinese leaf vegetable that is perfect to include in a stir fry. Combine with broccoli, bean sprouts and chicken before draping with some soy sauce and your evening is sorted.
For ever 100g of serving, bok choy contains 105mg of calcium. 54% of the calcium here is absorbed by our body. To put that into perspective, that figure dwarves the 5% we absorb from spinach and even the 32% we absorb from milk.
Overall, boy choy is one of most nutrient-dense foods on the planet, and also contains vitamin A, vitamin C, iron, magnesium and vitamin D.
Oranges are just so orange that it seems impossible to imagine we could absorb calcium from them. After all, we associate calcium with white milk. Right?
Although orange’s calcium content isn’t quite as good as the above, 40mg per 100g is still very useful because it equates to 71mg per one cup of raw orange sections. This alone makes up 7% of your recommended daily amount. Not bad, huh?
The best thing, though, is that orange juice actually tastes fantastic. So get to it!
Tofu is the bad boy of the plant-based calcium world, with a 100gram serving containing a whopping 350mg of the mineral.
Tofu, which is also known as bean curd, is essentially soy milk that has been coagulated and pressed into soft, small white blocks. It’s a bit of a hit or miss with vegans, but if you like the taste, you’ll be able to find most of your daily recommended amount of calcium right here.
The only downside is that there are lots of types of tofu, and their calcium content varies. Always check the label!
There is 13mg of calcium per 100grams of apricots, which makes this tasty fruit a surprisingly good plant-based source of the essential mineral.
Chickpeas are part of the Fabaceae family, and are a key ingredient in the production of hummus. They are also a great plant-based source of calcium, containing 105m per every 100grams of serving.
Beans overall are a good source of calcium; they’re not great, but they are good. They slightly pale when compared to dairy products, but if you’re looking for a milk-free diet, chickpeas can form a key part of it.
One thing that is worth mentioning is that preparation is key with chickpeas, as certain methods of preparation can reduce the calcium content.
Research has shown that there is only one superstar when it comes to improve the bone health of postmenopausal women, and it isn’t milk. Nope, it’s the humble, ever delectable prune.
Prunes contain around 43mg of calcium per 100g of serving, but the human body absorbs most of it, and researchers say that this fruit is great for preventing osteoporosis and even fractures. To reduce your risk, though, you would have to eat around 10 prunes a day. If you can manage that, you’re onto a winner.
Almonds are a super snack if you want more calcium. A 100grams handful contains a mammoth 264mg, ensuring that these nuts pack a proper calcium punch.
And if you don’t fancy snacking on almonds all day, why not try almond milk? This plant-based milk (that still sounds weird), is on the up, with more and more of us drinking it instead of dairy-based milk.
Almonds are also rich in healthful fats and vitamins, and they are a complete protein. Perfect.
All rice is good for us, but brown rice steals the show when it comes to calcium. A 100 gram serving contains 10mg, and because the food is so cheap and plentiful, you can eat plenty of it as you bulk out your meals.
And if you think 10mg doesn’t sound all that much, consider that one cup equals 195.
Brown rice is still a modest source of calcium, of course, but if you’re on a milk-free diet, they represent a good alternative. They can fill out a wide number of types of meals, and they are easy to cook.
There are 47mg of calcium per 100grams of broccoli. The downside with getting your calcium from broccoli is that your body doesn’t find it all that easy to absorb the mineral, but they can still provide a good source if you’re on a milk-free diet.
Like a lot of dark leafy green vegetables, their calcium content is high but only a small percentage is actually used by the body; for this reason we suggest that you talk to your healthcare provider.
What are your favourite plant-based calcium rich foods?