Calcium

Functions

Calcium is needed by the body for the following reasons:

  • to contribute to bone density and maintain healthy, strong teeth
  • to form blood clots to stop bleeding
  • for normal nerve and muscle function

Sources

The richest sources of calcium are found in dairy products, such as:

  • milk
  • cheese
  • yoghurt
Milk bottles on a doorstep

However, calcium is also found in:

  • green leafy vegetables
  • sardines – and other fish where bones are eaten
  • white bread
  • non-dairy milk – for example soya milk, which is fortified with calcium

Deficiency

Not getting enough calcium can result in osteoporosis. This is a condition which affects older adults who have weak bones as a result of not getting enough calcium during adolescence and adulthood.