Calcium is what makes up our bones all throughout our body. But few people know that calcium is also used throughout the rest of the body. Our bones are more than just a frame; they are also a bank of calcium. The body uses calcium as a blood pressure regulator, it plays a role in blood clotting, it is essential for muscle contraction and thus for our own heartbeat, and also performs many other duties. Calcium is the most abundant mineral in our body for a reason as you can plainly see, and must be replenished for maximum health.

• What it does: Mineralization of bones and teeth, muscle contraction and relaxation, nerve functioning, blood clotting

• Good Sources: sardines, milk, tofu (calcium set), black eyed peas, cheddar cheese, turnip greens, waffle, broccoli

• What happens if you consume too much of it: Constipation, interference with other mineral absorption, larger risk of kidney stones

• How much is too much: more than 2,500 mg/day

• What happens if you don’t consume enough: Stunted growth and weak bones in children, bone loss in adults

• Daily Requirement Intake: Adults (19-50 years)=1000 mg/day

(>51 years) = 1200 mg/day

This information can be found in any nutrition text book or on the National Institute of Health Website. This is only a basic description of vitamins and the amounts needed for an average adult diet of 2,000 calories. Some vitamins and foods may react with your body when on certain medications. Always consult your doctor before starting any supplements or diet. For further information consult with your Physician or a Registered Dietitian. Your way to excellent health starts with you.