Why Women Should Bone Up on Calcium?

Why Women Should Bone Up on Calcium?

women and calcium

Indian women suffer from lack of calcium and majority of them run into the risk of contracting Osteoporosis. This is a disease where the bones gradually become thin and women become susceptible to hip fractures, spine curvature and fragile structure of bones. Hence, it is essential for women to bone up on calcium so that they can build up proper density of bone and attain a proper bone mass. This will prevent Osteoporosis at later stages of life.

Underlying Science of Calcium Intake:

Medical studies have revealed that young women need 1000 to 1200 mg of calcium intake through their diet. This calcium requirement increases when women reach the pre-menopause and menopause stage of their life. Of the total calcium content in the body, bones are responsible for storing 90% of the calcium. However, when the calcium consumption falls, calcium is released from the bones and the mineral enters the bloodstream. Calcium is required in blood to ensure that clotting takes place proper. Women who suffer from lack of calcium in their bloodstream exhibit problems of blood clotting even in cases of minor cuts. Apart from this, calcium has been found to be an important element that aids in proper beating of the heart. In case of lack of calcium in body, the heart fails to contract properly and thereby causing irregular heartbeats. Medical studies have also revealed that calcium is required for keeping LDL cholesterol levels low and for increasing HDL cholesterol levels. HDL cholesterol is required for a healthy life. Finally, for women who suffer from PMS or premenstrual syndrome need calcium because calcium is known to decrease this medical condition naturally.

What Happens When Calcium Level is Low:

Women who suffer from lack of calcium in their body suffer from a number of medical conditions. One of them is Osteoporosis that has already been discussed. Let us take a look at some of the other medical conditions that women generally face and because of which, women should bone up on calcium.

Hypocalcaemia: This is a medical condition in which the calcium levels in the blood fall. Because of calcium inadequacy in blood, women can face the problem of feet and hand spasms, tingling in feet, hands, face and tongue and muscle aches. In situations of Hypocalcaemia, bones release the stored calcium and this leads to Osteoporosis.

Premenstrual Syndrome: PMS is associated with cramps, bloating and headache. In situations where women face PMS and also lack calcium in their body, the problems associated with PMS increases and menstrual periods can be extremely painful for them. It is because of this and other reasons that women should bone up on calcium.

What Should Women Eat to Bone Up On Calcium?

It is always preferred to increase the calcium intake through diet. A perfectly balanced diet with enough calcium ingredients is the best method to increase calcium content of the body to its optimal level. Consuming dairy products like milk, cheese, yogurt, butter etc. can help. However, some women prefer not to go for such food items to avoid increase in fat consumption. There are alternatives like oysters, kale, sardines, broccoli etc. which can fulfill the calcium needs of the body. Some women prefer to take calcium supplements, which are available as “Over the Counter” medicines. It is always suggested to consult a doctor before taking such supplements.

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Reviewed By:

Dr. Kaushal M. Bhavsar (MBBS, MD)

Assistant Professor in Pulmonary Medicine, GMERS Medical College, Ahmedabad