Benefits of calcium on the human body
Vitamins and minerals are very important for the steady functioning of the human body. In the latter case, one of the notable minerals that hold a lot of health benefits is calcium.
This mineral is necessary for the good health of many different organs and their overall functions. For example, it assists in improving muscle functions, maintaining the heart's proper rhythm, and more.
However, the one element calcium is intricately linked with is bone health. Indeed, at least 99% of the total calcium content in the body stays in the teeth and the bones. So, having a calcium deficiency can adversely affect the healthy functioning of the human body.
Here, this mineral helps in their correct maintenance and ensures a strong and compact structure.
In the U.S. alone, this is one of the main minerals whose supplements sell at a high rate.
How do people get calcium in the body?
Many food items are rich in calcium content, and they increase the amount of it in the body. Since this mineral does not naturally produce inside the body, you need to consume foods rich in it.
- Dairy products are the most common food items that contain high amounts of calcium. These include yogurt, cheese, and, of course, milk.
- White beans and sardines also contain high amounts of calcium.
- Other healthy options include green leafy vegetables. Spinach, kale, and broccoli are some of the best options to get high amounts of calcium.
- Some fortified foods are rich in calcium, and many people consume them. These include cereals, white bread, orange juice, and soy products. Look for the calcium symbol in the nutritional content list on the product packets.
- Currently, there are medications available that hold a high amount of calcium. People can choose to use them as well. The types of this include calcium supplements and antacids.
All in all, the best manner of getting calcium in your diet is through eating natural foods rich in them. These have other benefits as well, and thus, are better choices than medicinal drugs.
One important thing to keep in mind in terms of staying healthy is that one must have nutrients in measured quantities. That is no different for calcium-rich food either. According to experts, there is a generally recommended amount of calcium that everyone should take.
The NIH (National Institutes of Health) stated that the average amount of regular calcium adults should get is 1,000 mg per day. Also, they stated that ladies over 50, pregnant women, or lactating females should have 1,200 mg of calcium instead.
Benefits of calcium for the human body
There are many different manners in which calcium helps in the healthy functioning of the human body. Some of the calcium benefits are mentioned below.
- Teeth and bone health
As mentioned earlier, most of the calcium content in the body resides in the teeth and bones. Bones, in particular, are the storage point of calcium. Moreover, this mineral helps to keep them healthy in a lot of different ways.
The bones are always developing and remodeling. Especially during the ages of childhood and adolescence, most of the density increases. Calcium helps with increasing bone mass and reforms the broken bones as well.
During the younger years, bones lose their mass at a higher rate than for people in their 30's or more. This is when the calcium content remodels the bones and helps regain bone mass. However, after they grow older, this pace is much lesser. Overall, both generations need to eat more calcium-rich food.
Moreover, osteoporosis is a condition that occurs due to the loss of bone density and mass. After that, the bones lose their strength, become porous, and are prone to breaking. Some notable points regarding this are:
- Usually, this occurs in women after menopause. The amount of progesterone and estrogen in their body is lesser.
- Other causes that result in this condition include smoking, eating disorders, low vitamin D levels, excess alcohol intake, and low physical activity levels.
- Women athletes get osteoporosis as well.
Those who have high amounts of calcium would have lesser chances of getting osteoporosis. Thus, it is important to eat more calcium-rich items to prevent this condition.
Good bone health is highly important. Women athletes, in particular, may get a condition called the female athlete triad. This may occur when they start training more. Indeed, some ladies eat less, and that decreases their energy.
Women athletes need to eat more calcium-rich food. If not, they may suffer from bone fractures more easily.
Another condition that is common for females due to less calcium intake is amenorrhea. This means a lowered menstrual cycle. Later, they can suffer many other body issues, like acne, hair loss, pelvic pain, facial hair, and more.
Usually, people should consume calcium between 1000-2500 mg per day. This would keep the bones and teeth strong.
- Assists in muscle movement
Good amounts of calcium help the human body in many ways, including muscle development.
Here, the positive molecule of calcium triggers the release of a neurotransmitter at the nerve junctions. This carries the nerve impulses from the nervous system to a muscle fiber. As a result, it helps with moving the muscles properly.
In the muscle fiber, the calcium helps myosin and actin interact properly at the time of contractions. In the actin filament, there are troponin and tropomyosin protein structures.
Here, the calcium joins with the troponin, leading to a change of tropomyosin position. Then, the actin sites are exposed, and myosin attaches to them. After that, the muscles contract properly, and people notice healthy muscle functions.
Consequently, when the brain commands a limb, for example, the hand to move, the nerves transfer this message.
- Strength improvement
As explained before, calcium helps with the growth and maintenance of bones and improves muscle functions.
As a result, they become stronger, and the person can handle many tasks more easily afterward. This is one of the main reasons trainers and fitness experts stress eating calcium-rich food.
- Blood circulation
Calcium is highly useful in the proper circulation of blood all over the body. Indeed, it prompts the blood vessels to relax properly and contract when necessary.
Many studies conclude that calcium helps lower blood pressure, even for those with regular pressure.
As surmised through the evaluation of 16 trials involving 3048 people, calcium did affect the participants' blood pressure. It reduced both diastolic and systolic blood pressure, reading at 0.98 mmHg and 1.43 mmHg, respectively.
Those who got more than 1000 mg of calcium atom per day showed higher counts. In this comparison, those who got 1000-1500 mg calcium per day saw a reduction of systolic blood pressure by 1.14 mmHg. As for participants who got more than 1500 mg per day, their blood pressure was reduced by 2.79 mmHg each day.
Also, in the concern of age of the people, calcium intake affects differently for different age groups.
Between the age gap of 11-82, the younger participants saw a bigger change than the older ones. Indeed, the systolic pressure for those younger than 35 years dropped by 2.11 mmHg.
However, those who were 35 or more saw a blood pressure reduction of 0.96 mmHg.
- Pregnancy benefits
Women who are pregnant get a lot of benefits from increasing their intake of calcium.
Not only does this affect the pregnant ladies themselves, but also the babies growing within the womb.
Indeed, during this period, a baby is still developing. High amounts of calcium can make their developing bones, nerves, heart, etc., stronger. The same goes for pregnant women as well who gain better strength.
After all, the baby is constantly taking from the total amount of nutrients that the mother consumes. This makes the women weaker unless they get sufficient sustaining nutrients.
Especially at the third trimester, the baby needs calcium more as their development speeds up. At the peak periods, they get around 250-350 mg of calcium from the pregnant women each day.
Thus, if you eat more calcium foods, you would have enough to sustain your own bone and muscle health.
Not to mention, it is important to have strong physical energy at the time of delivery. During this period, the mother loses a lot of blood. This makes them weaker, and a weakened body cannot handle the stress of the delivery.
Therefore, those who consume more calcium have an easier pregnancy and delivery. A lot of women suffer from a brittle bone condition called osteoporosis during this time. Another way in which calcium can help during pregnancy is that it supports the bones to recover faster. So, many doctors recommend them to take calcium tablets.
- Neural transfers
One of how the calcium element improves the human body's condition is that it supports the central nervous system. Indeed, the nerves in the spine transfer the messages to the rest of the body parts.
This is closely related to muscle movement and function. Plus, when a person feels pain or heat, the nerves signal this to the brain. Then, it reacts.
However, the nerves need proper maintenance, and that is where the calcium is useful. It enhances the strength of the nerves and helps them carry the messages faster and securely.
Overall, there are many ways in which calcium improves the overall health of people. It affects most of the major organs and systems in the body and assists in their maintenance. Many studies prove this. Yet, you should contact your doctor to know how much calcium you should consume daily.