What is food mineral?

Minerals are inorganic elements that originate in the earth and cannot be made in the body. They play important roles in various bodily functions and are necessary to sustain life and maintain optimal health, and thus are essential nutrients.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Recommended Intake of Calcium


Calcium plays a key role in the integrity of the skeleton. Adequate intakes throughout childhood and adolescence are essential for optimal peak bone mass, which occurs between 20 and 30 years of age.

The RDA for children (1-10 years) and adults 25 years and older is 800 mg/day.

The recommended dietary allowance (RDA) for the adult male and female (800 mg/d) has been based upon calcium balance studies conducted with groups of individuals accustomed to ample intakes of the mineral.

Additional calcium (1200 mg) has been recommended during adolescence when rapid growth and bone mineralization are occurring. Government surveys have revealed, however, that much of the population (particularly females over 12 years of age) fails to consume the recommended amounts of calcium.

All these amounts of calcium can easily be obtained if dairy products are included in the diet. A balanced diet furnishes, in addition to calcium, other nutrients necessary for bone health.

Calcium metabolism in adolescent is not fully understood. Researcher found that the growth demands of girls were met by a more effective net absorption and retention of calcium compared with the young adult women, suggesting that the body is able to respond appropriately to increased need.

Inadequate calcium intake during the period of bone mineralization is a real concern because of the high incidence of osteoporosis among elderly women and the significantly correlation shown to exist between present bone density and past calcium intake.

The calcium absorption rate has been reported to increase during pregnancy and lactation. This evidence suggest it is prudent to recommend a calcium intake of 1200 mg throughout pregnancy and lactation, irrespective of age.

When body mass is taken into account, growing children require as much as two to four times as much calcium as adults and the United States recommended dietary allowance for calcium is greatest during adolescence (11-18 years) and early adulthood (19-24 years), being in the order of 1200 mg/day.

Although the exact age at which peak bone mass is achieved is uncertain, it is believed to be no earlier than 25 years. Meanwhile 800 mg/d is sufficient for the adult woman (over 25 years) even after menopause. Postmenopausal osteoporosis is regarded primarily as a medical rather than a nutritional problem.

Adequate calcium should be obtained through ingesting calcium rich foods.

The reason for poor calcium intake amongst female athletes and non-athletes lies in the lack of knowledge about good calcium sources and a desire for leanness. It is a common misconception that all dairy sources of calcium are high in fat.
Recommended Intake of Calcium
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