It’s that time of year. People are making plans to better their health. Many people I know have health minded reasons for going dairy free. There is great debate about dairy and meat in our diet. I am not here to argue either way. I do know many people who have tried lactose free, organic and raw milk and still are not able to consume them without painful symptoms. On behalf of these people I wanted to share some helpful information. If this is on your list of diet changes to tackle you might find this information helpful. Websites for diary free information and recipes:
Milk protein allergies and lactose intolerance have been linked to a wide array of physical symptoms. For some, it is as simple as lethargy or weight gain, for others crippling migraines and “autoimmune” type symptoms are a lifestyle complication. There I some research to substantiate dairy links to prostate cancer, breast cancer, type 1 and type 2 diabetes, obesity, high cholesterol, and heart disease. Like many other food sources, dairy cattle are often fed hormones and genetically modified feed and grain in an effort to boost milk production. Typically, it is wise to buy organic dairy products which do not contain these additives.
Some individuals may be sensitive to only one of the typical proteins in milk products such as casein. This is why sometimes goat milk or goat cheeses may be better choices. It is still a dairy product, but the combinations of milk proteins are different than in cow’s milk. Those individuals who are “intolerant”, may actually be lacking an enzyme such as lactase which is needed to metabolize a cow’s milk sugar such as lactose.
In susceptible people, dairy products often produce mucus and additional secretions which are sometimes difficult for the body to eliminate. This is particularly true for nearly-closed cavities such as sinuses or eustachian tubes. Even for people who may not have dairy sensitivities it is often recommended that dairy products be eliminated when people have a cold, sinus congestion, upper respiratory infections, sore throats and other similar ailments.
Dairy foods are not the only sources of calcium. In fact, the following are some CALCIUM-RICH FOODS:
Calcium Rich Vegetables
- Broccoli: A cup of broccoli contains about 180 mg of calcium.
- Kale This is a type of cabbage which is most beneficial. A half a cup of kale contains 90 to 100 mg of calcium.
- Okra: Half cup of okra contains around 70 mg of calcium.
- Turnip Greens: You can get between 100 to 125 mg calcium in 1/2 cup, cooked turnip greens.
- Spinach: There is around 300 mg of calcium in a single cup of spinach.
- Alfalfa Sprouts: A cup of raw alfalfa sprouts has 11 mg of calcium.
- Artichoke. A single boiled or raw artichoke has around 55 mg calcium content.
- Asparagus: Half a cup of boiled asparagus has around 21 mg of calcium. In raw asparagus, 1 spear, the calcium content is 3 mg and 1/2 cup canned asparagus has 18 mg of calcium.
- Bamboo Shoots: The calcium content in 1 cup of canned bamboo is 11 mg.
- Beets (Canned): In a cup of beets, the calcium content is 44 mg.
- Carrot: A single cup of canned carrot juice has 57 mg of calcium. One cup of raw carrots contains 42 mg calcium.
- Celery: A single cup of raw celery has 41 mg of calcium content.
- Cauliflower: ½ cup of steamed cauliflower has 10 mg calcium.
- Cucumber: A single cup of peeled, raw cucumber contains 17 mg calcium.
- Eggplant: A single cup of pickled eggplant contains 34 mg calcium.
- Garlic: A teaspoon of raw garlic has 5 mg calcium
- Lettuce: A cup of raw, shredded butter lettuce contains 19 mg of calcium.
- Edible Mushrooms: One can of mushrooms has 14 mg of calcium.
- Mustard Greens: A cup of chopped, boiled mustard greens contains 104 mg of calcium.
- Onions: One cup of chopped raw onions contains around 40 mg of calcium.
- Peas: a cup of steamed peas contains 34 mg of calcium.
- Green chilies: Canned green chilies contain 50 mg of calcium in a single cup.
- Tomatoes: In a can of tomato paste, without salt, you would find around 94 mg of calcium. On the contrary, 1 cup of green, raw tomatoes has only 23 mg of calcium.
- Green Beans: Green beans have a calcium content of 55 mg, when they are boiled and a single cup of it is considered.
- Potatoes: A cup of raw and cooked peeled potatoes contains 26 mg of calcium.
- Calcium Rich Fruits and Dry Fruits
- Apples: A cup of unsweetened apple juice has 17 mg of calcium, whereas raw apples with skin and without skin have a calcium content of 8 mg and 6 mg, respectively.
- Avocados: One cup of avocado has a calcium content of 18 mg.
- Banana: There is 8 mg of calcium in a cup of banana. When dried, then the calcium content is 22 mg per cup.
- Grapes: Green grapes have a calcium content of 15 mg per cup. American grapes contain 13 mg of calcium per cup.
- Lemon: A cup of canned or bottled lemon juice contains 27 mg of calcium.
- Orange: One large raw orange has a calcium content of 74 mg.
- Pineapple: Canned, unsweetened, pineapple juice has 33 mg calcium in a single cup.
- Cherries: Sour cherries which are canned have 26 mg calcium in one cup and frozen cherries contain 20 mg calcium in a cup. Likewise, a cup of sweet frozen cherries has 31 mg calcium.
- Cranberry: 1 cup of whole raw cranberries has just 8 mg of calcium.
- Watermelon: A single cup of diced, raw watermelon has 11mg of calcium.
- Strawberries: This fruit has a calcium content between 25 mg to 35 mg in any form – canned, frozen or raw.
- Pomegranates: A single raw pomegranate has 5 mg calcium.
- Apricots: Dried and dehydrated apricots contain around 70 mg of calcium in a single cup and raw apricots contain 20 mg of calcium.
- Acai Berries: These have a fantastic calcium content, that is, 260 mg per 100 gm of acai berry powder.
- Mangosteen: A cup of mangosteen contains around 24 mg of calcium.
- Goji Berries: Dried Goji Berries, also called as wolf berries have a calcium content of 65 mg per 100 gm.
- Blueberries: A single cup of blueberries, canned or frozen has around 13 mg of calcium.
- Almonds: This central Asian dry fruit nut has a calcium content is 162 mg in a cup.
- Other Foods Rich in Calcium
- Soybean: Soy bean curd or tofu is a great source of calcium. It has around 150 mg calcium in 4 oz of tofu.
- White Beans: a cup of white beans has around 50 mg of calcium.
- Sardines: This sea food loved by the felines is a fantastic source of calcium. There is a calcium content of around 325 mg in 3 oz of sardines. Canned salmon is also an excellent source of calcium with 181 mg. of calcium.
- Egg: A medium sized egg has 55 mg of calcium
- Chickpeas: Chickpeas (Garbanzo beans) have a calcium content of 105 mg in a cup.
- Ginger Root/Ginger: Ginger has a calcium content of 16 mg per 100 gm.
- Molasses: Blackstrap molasses contains 176 mg. calcium per tablespoonBeef, pork, chicken and a few other meats also account for a good amount of calcium. Sesame seeds, cornbread and calcium fortified foods contain a reasonable amount of calcium. For a normal, healthy adult, the daily requirements of calcium is around 1000 to 1300 mg., depending on whether the individual is a male or female. Women at risk for osteoporosis often take more than this. For children the daily calcium requirement is around 500 and 800 mg for the age group between 1 and 3 and 4 to 8 years respectively.
- Vitamin D is needed to absorb dietary calcium. One half hour of sun on normally oily skin typically will provide sufficient input for the body to make Vitamin D. Calcium is more poorly absorbed by people eating a high protein diet, or high phosphorus foods (such as soda pop and milk). Calcium also is not well absorbed from sesame seeds unless they are ground or pulverized. Research has compared the absorption of calcium from kale with the absorption from milk and revealed the absorption of calcium from kale was 40.9%, compared with 32.1% from milk. Of course, digestive effectiveness often varies among individuals.
Originally posted in January-February, 2011. Information provided by Dr. Karen Benton, Naturopathic Physician http://www.countrydoc.com