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calcium tablets
dosage?
Charlie D
ID#: 41261
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8:42:11 PM on 19-06-2006
I bought some calcium tablets today - I'm just not managing to drink soy milk or anything else with calcium in it.  A couple of questions:

1)  How do I figure what dosage I need if 1-4 tablets per day is the recommended adult dosage?  On the ingredients list in brackets next to each item is an amount in mg and then to the side (with no column heading) is another amount in mg - can I assume the amount on the right of the ingredient is the recommended daily dose?

2)  My mum is concerned that calcium taken in tablet form isn't absorbed by the body.  She is concerned that I will develop osteoperosis when I'm older...  can anyone debunk this myth?

Thanks folks!
Kristin
ID#: 41263
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8:49:04 PM on 19-06-2006
Hi Charlie, calcium you can get plenty from nuts such as almonds, tahini, green veg aswell as fortified soy products etc

I have never taken calcium tablets but give them to patients at work and they usually take one per day, what brand are they?
Charlie D
ID#: 41264
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8:49:36 PM on 19-06-2006
blackmores
Kristin
ID#: 41265
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8:51:57 PM on 19-06-2006
ohh dont know then, sorry, the ressies at work take calsup, which IMO is a waste of time, maybe get your levels checked at the DR if you are concerned
joanne
ID#: 41266
Vegetarian and Vegan Society of Queensland member
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9:08:58 PM on 19-06-2006
approx 1000mg daily is the recommended intake, although vegetarians need less because they don't excrete as much, and vegans need less again.
Even conservative medical opinion now says that weight bearing exercise is the major factor in increasing bone density. If you go to pcrm.org you'll find a lot of stuff about dairy products. Why is it that western countries with their massive calcium consumption from cow products have such high rates of osteoporosis and countries where they eat little or no dairy produce have much lower rates? The consumption of cows milk is likely to cause you to excrete more calcium than you take in, and lo/no fat cow products are worse.
If you don't like soy milk try chickpeas, tahini, rhubarb, parsley. Better yet, have felafel, stewed okra with tomato and some tabouli for dinner, followed by rhubarb crumble with soy ice cream for dessert....mmm.....or soup with chickpeas, silverbeet, coriander and heaps of parsley....
cameo
ID#: 41297
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10:20:43 AM on 20-06-2006
And don't forget to snack on dried figs once in a while!
angelhair
ID#: 44656
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11:49:58 PM on 20-07-2006
Hello! I have been vegan for over six years now and I can totally understand your concerns regarding adequate calcium intake. I myself was experiencing ongoing lower back pain that I never had before, and had shrunk a few centimetres (weird I know). So I was getting stressed out about all of this, and pretty much knew that it was related to my lack of calcium. Keep in mind that I am fairly healthy now, but a couple of years ago I was pretty slack with the nutrition factor. So, to cut a long story short I was taking those horrible Caltrate pills, and half the time not as they were freaking me out (too big and too pink), and a beautiful friend recommended "Lifestream Natural Calcium".
This product is in powdered form and you just take a teaspoon full before bed (stirred in soymilk). Take it in the evening as calcium is also a muscle relaxant (helps you sleep better), and caffeine won't hinder absorbtion (as in I drink alot of coffee during the day and that leaches calcium from your bones).
Since I started taking it my lower back pain has gone and I feel so much better. This product gets a five star rating from me, and you can get it from health food stores.
For those who want to know it is made out of 100% Premium Lithaminium calcareum sea-vegetable. One teaspoon contains 924mg of calcium (Caltrate contains 600mg), 90mg magnesium, 28mcg boron, 2.8mcg selenium, 5.6mcg zinc and 5.6mcg iodine. It contains to quote "no animal products or by-products".
It rocks my world. Sorry this info took so long, but I hope that it helps!
Dark Horse
Moderator

ID#: 44662
Vegetarian and Vegan Society of Queensland member
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1:24:26 AM on 21-07-2006
Hello angelhair and welcome.  I don't know how old you are, but I have been vegan for over 20 years , went through menopause a loooong time ago and do not take a supplement and my bone density is stronger than average for a woman my age.  And I live on black coffee and don't drink soy milk either.  You can also take too much calcium and finish up with kidney stones.  Did you know you were deficient in calcium?  Perhaps you should have it checked if you haven't already done so?  
te3by
ID#: 44672
Vegetarian and Vegan Society of Queensland member
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9:11:25 AM on 21-07-2006
Hey, I was looking at the some Victorian State Govt Nutrition site yesterday, and their recommended intake of calcium was 800mg ... also stated that 1 cup brocolli was the equivalent of 45mg and 1 cup spinach was 100mg... and went on about tofu and almonds and tahini too - but said to check the country of origin for those because some imported tofus are fortified with calcium of a dairy origin, and that calcium in almonds and tahini (which are often imported) is very reliant on local conditions, soil conditions, climate, age, processing, etc etc...

So be a Popeye!
angelhair
ID#: 44998
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7:52:01 PM on 22-07-2006
Hi Dark Horse - for some reason I had assumed you were male. Perhaps the stallion/horse thing. Anyhow, I turned thirty this January, and perhaps I should get checked for calcium, but I don't particularly like doctors, etc. But it may be worth it...
I am impressed that your bone density is so good. I guess it is one of the things that concerns me, especially as my nan has osteo. Also, most recently I had to have three fillings and broke two toes - so I am speculating about the reasons underpinning those issues - but perhaps I should get a medical opinion.
I think that women have to go through so many things that have a physical impact on your body (ie. menstruation, childbirth, etc) that you want it to be as strong  and healthy as possible to deal with all of these aspects. I look at it as a work in progress.
The Possum Lady
ID#: 45005
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8:56:13 PM on 22-07-2006
I have been wondering whether the big fear of osteoporosis and calcium deficiencies is just a product of clever marketing by the dairy industries? I'm not saying its not a problem, but dairyfarmers do some heavy marketing about how great a source of calcium dairy is, and how important it is to have calcium for healthy bones and not to get osteoporosis later in life. So maybe this has been drilled into us over the years, so that we become more worried about calcium and potential osteoporosis than other mineral deficiencies?
cannycap
Moderator

ID#: 45006
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9:17:30 PM on 22-07-2006
TPL.. I am a bit suss on it all too. I think humans only even started eating dairy recently in the big scheme of things. So how on earth did we all have any healthy bones prior to this? Herbivores seem to do OK too... don't see many gorillas drinking cows milk or eating cheese.
Kristin
ID#: 45007
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9:30:32 PM on 22-07-2006
I am suss on it aswell, I have cared for many people whom have consumed large amounts of dairy and still have osteo arthritis
te3by
ID#: 45013
Vegetarian and Vegan Society of Queensland member
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10:20:55 PM on 22-07-2006
I had to see a dietician once - her advice was to not focus on calcium alone as it needs other minerals and vitamins to work on bones and the immune system, just as zinc helps vitamin c absorption etc...

Just in case i'm not making sense, if you've seen the Analene ad on TV, you should get the picture (the little hexagons joining together).

I think in part it could be scare tactics by the dairy industry, but there is still the importance of good nutrition - not just a calcium overdose! - to prevent osteo-anything!

The Possum Lady
ID#: 45027
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12:57:09 AM on 23-07-2006
Ok, good nutrition is definately really important. I don't take any suppliments, but I do eat a nutritious diet and try to get lots of variety in terms of fruit, veg, nuts, seeds, beans, grains, and soy products. So, is there reason to believe I (or anyone else eating a wide variety of plant foods) would be deficient in calcium or any other minerals? (apart from B12 and omega3 which require special attention, but my soy milk is B12 fortified and I use flaxseed and canola oils).

I honestly dont know, because a lot of people on here seem to take suppliments, but the way I feel is that suppliments are almost a way of admitting that the vegan diet must be lacking in something. I know its more convenient, especially for people who have little time to prepare foods etc, but still, I'd prefer to do it the natural way and get all my nutrients through foods. But you have all got me concerned!! So whats the general opinion? If you eat a varied vegan diet, do you NEED suppliments???
The Possum Lady
ID#: 45028
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12:59:29 AM on 23-07-2006
Oh yes, and I'm glad others agree with my theory about calcium and the dairy industry!!
dogangel
ID#: 45030
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4:41:38 AM on 23-07-2006
Hope this helps Charlie D

http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/calcium.html

I wish i knew alot more when i was younger  about the bones....
ZanyZebra
ID#: 45031
Vegetarian and Vegan Society of Queensland member
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4:44:32 AM on 23-07-2006
You can always get a blood test if you want a definite answer.  That is the best way to bypass all the dairy spin.

There is a dedicated chapter in the book "The China Study" if you want a lot more information on this subject.
dogangel
ID#: 45034
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5:08:55 AM on 23-07-2006
Is it the milk that is bad for us  or is it the type of calcium it produces ??I found this on the web page below .

Has anyone heard of wheylite or know anything about it other than whats on the website ? thanx ...


Cow Versus Plant-Based Milk
Will you get enough calcium and other nutrients from nondairy milk? Yes, if you buy fortified products. The most common nutrients added to nondairy milks are the same ones either added to or found in cow's milk: calcium, riboflavin, and vitamins C, D, and B12. Buy brands that contain 20% to 30% of the U.S. RDA for calcium, riboflavin, and vitamin B12, which makes them nutritionally similar to cow's milk. If for some reason you lack exposure to the sun, buy products fortified with vitamin D. Not all nondairy beverages are fortified, so check the labels.

http://www.swedish.org/16356.cfm




Good plant sources of calcium include tofu (if prepared using calcium sulphate contains more than four times the calcium of whole cow's milk),

I was also reading that regardless of what you have to drink for calcium soy milk ,or almond milk, or oat milk,
if you add chocolate to it the high oxalite content of chocalate stops the full obsorbtion of the calcium oxalite is in many foods .......


Dark Horse
Moderator

ID#: 45041
Vegetarian and Vegan Society of Queensland member
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8:56:14 AM on 23-07-2006
Why don't you all just do what your mothers used to tell you to do and "Eat your greens!".  Lots of calcium in almonds and tahini too.  It's the high protein in cows' milk that flushes the calcium out.  As I have said many times, I've never used cows' milk or soy milk or taken a supplement except B12.  My mother didn't ever see a nutritionist and as far as I'm aware, never pored over nutrition books.  There probably weren't any in her day.  My father never used cows' milk, didn't take supplements, lived to 95 and didn't have osteoporosis.  He had been a heavy smoker till about 60 years old, drank far too much black tea and coffee, liked a rum and a red wine (or two) - and certainly never studied up on nutrition.  I don't know what this obsession with supplements is all about.  Are people frightened of a vegetarian/vegan diet?  People seem to be saying that removing meat from their diet is cause for concern.  It is not.  Of course, in times gone by, we didn't have nutritionists, naturopaths, vitamin companies and television pumping all this "important information" into everybody all the time, and reaping great profits.  I don't consider living and food a science - but just plain old fashioned common sense.    We are soooo obsessed with ourselves these days.  Why?
te3by
ID#: 45050
Vegetarian and Vegan Society of Queensland member
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10:02:30 AM on 23-07-2006
I'm interested in the science of nutrition tho... lol It's kind of cool and interesting how things work, work together, and work against each other, and what does happen when the levels of things are not right...

of course the human race survived centuries without knowing half of it, but then the human race survived centuries without electricity too i guess! hehe or flushing toilets (in fact so many still don't have the loos or the electricity! ehehe Or the nutritional education!!)

i personally LOOOOOOOOOOOOOOVe soy milk :D hehe
The Possum Lady
ID#: 45053
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10:06:35 AM on 23-07-2006
DH, I do see where you are coming from, and its great that you and your parents are such examples of good health without all the supplements or dairy or any of that. Definately makes me feel more confident. But I think the obsession with nutrition is due to a generation difference. I grew up learning about 'healthy' nutrition at school, and on TV, and on the radio too probably. Its been a big thing for as long as I can remember (I was born in 1982), and like everything, its hard to shake those ideas. And today, EVERYTHING is about health and nutrition! I just want to be as healthy as I can be, so I can live as long as possible and be as healthy and active as I can for all of my life. I do eat my greens!! Lots and lots of 'em!!!

I guess I'm just saying that its hard to ignore all that hype about nutrition. And, I do think that nutrition is very important, not necessarily a science, but definately something to be aware of and informed about.
cannycap
Moderator

ID#: 45056
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10:24:32 AM on 23-07-2006
DH, I agree. I think as you say, that the people selling these products have a vested interest in keeping us scared that we are not getting everything we need in our food. However, it is also true that with modern agricultural methods, lots of produce has less vitamin and mineral content that it did, say, 50 years ago. Add to that how long fresh foods are stored for these days and our penchant for eating over-processed foods.... that said however, if we are eating a good deal of food that is processed as little as possible, and as fresh as possible, then there is probably no need to worry at all. Everyone is different, and different people will need different amounts of certain nutrients. If someone has a family history of osteo, for example, it may be that person should consider a calcium supplement and have regular bone density checks. Again, if there is a history of heart disease, then a person may need more magnesium and calcium than someone who doesn't have that history. An anxious person may need to watch B-group vitamins...etc... (especially if they self-medicate with alcohol).

I suppose that all this focus on deficiencies is not restricted to veg*ns... alot of meat-eaters I know also take supplements... the media scaremongering is very effective.


angelhair
ID#: 45061
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1:04:00 PM on 23-07-2006
You guys seem to stay up really late or get up really early! Yes, I agree that the Dairy Industry definitely has a vested interest in making people think they need calcium and/or are at risk of becoming calcium deficient. Why not? - there is money to be made after all I guess (similar to the meat industry).
I don't really think that any of us are self-obsessed as such though - maybe curiosity about oneself is self-obsession? I think if good health is the issue then sometimes it is helpful to be concerned, especially if (on a non-self-obsessed level) you want to cook and share good health with other people.  But, I do think that in this contemporary cultural climate we are encouraged to be super-analytical and deconstruct things, and make meaning out of them for ourselves and our own lives in relation to the rest of the world. But, hopefully that doesn't make us too obsessed with our own selves. Maybe it does?
Oh yeah, I was also thinking about another issue. In terms of the individual, everyone's bodies work differently, so maybe this nutrient absorption issue is subject to genetics, etc?
On another tangent if you are into supplements I actually thought Swisse women's multivitamin was good.
Dorothy
ID#: 45933
Vegetarian and Vegan Society of Queensland member
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1:28:20 PM on 27-07-2006
Charlie D, Please listen to Dark Horse. She is Right. I've been vegan for quite a while and get a blood test once a year as part of a medical for my career. It includes a calcium test. My result every year is higher than average. I'm currently 7 months pregnant at 40 for the first time. I take no suppliment for calcium. My doctor actually told me to not listen to anyone who tells me to drink milk and eat cheese now that I'm pregnant because vegans have better calcium levels than anyone. Get tested at the Doctor for peace of mind. If you're low improve your diet with almonds, oranges and just good natural food like everyone else is suggesting. By the way, everyone I know who has been pregnant tells me they tested low for calcium despite drinking milk and taking supplements. Two of my friends lost multiple teeth. Also every calcium tablet I've seen contains  D3 (not Vegan).
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