The Paleo Diet and Calcium

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The Paleo Diet and Calcium

November 12th, 2010 | By



The Caveman Diet, or PaleoDiet as it is most commonly known now, has been lumped into a list of crazy diet by one group.  And the reason why?  Well, you may not get enough calcium.  Clearly the link here is that the absence of milk consumption will leave you deficient in calcium and increase the risk of osteoporosis.  There are two flawed lines of logic with this assumption.
Foremost, calcium is easily attained on the Paleo Diet.  For the moment, let’s ignore the dairy aspect of this.  Calcium is found in nuts, seeds, vegetables, and especially green leafy vegetables.  Moreover, just taking calcium alone does not mean that you are utilizing it.  Calcium uptake is greatly improved by vitamin D.  In fact, we commonly correct calcium issues clinically by giving vitamin D and not calcium.  Calcium supplementation alone is rarely recommended.
Second, osteoporosis is almost never related to just a lack of calcium.  Rather diet, exercise, nutrient status and hormones are all equally important considerations.
The following is a list of foods that are not derived from dairy that provide adequate quantities of calcium.
Sesame Seeds
A quarter cup of sesame seeds has 351 mg calcium.
Spinach
A cup of boiled spinach has 245 mg.
Collard Greens
A cup of boiled collard greens has 266 mg.
Blackstrap Molasses
One tablespoon has about 137 mg.
Kelp
One cup of raw kelp has 136 mg.
Tahini
Two tablespoons of raw tahini (sesame seed butter) have 126 mg.
Broccoli
Two cups of boiled broccoli have 124 mg.
Swiss Chard
One cup of boiled chard has 102 mg.
Kale
One cup of boiled kale has 94 mg.
Brazil Nuts
Two ounces of Brazil nuts (12 nuts) have 90 mg.
Celery
Two cups of raw celery have 81 mg.
Almonds
One ounce of almonds (23 nuts) has 75 mg.
Papaya
One medium papaya has 73 mg.
Flax Seeds
Two tablespoons of flax seeds have 52 mg.
Oranges
One medium orange has 52 mg.

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