Whether you’re allergic to dairy or, like me, have cut down on your intake of cow’s milk because you have seen an improvement in your health or skin, it’s important to find other sources of calcium in your diet. Check out our Top 5 Dairy Free Sources of Calcium to help ensure you’re getting your daily recommended intake!
If you don’t get enough calcium then your body takes calcium from your bones to compensate, which of course can lead to weak and fragile bones. Lots of our muscles need calcium to function properly too, so although it’s important for everyone to consume the right amount it’s even more important if you’re an active person.
1. Soya milk
Soya milk is a completely dairy free source of vitamins and calcium. It’s made from the soya bean which is milled and made into this lovely creamy drink.
It has a subtle sweet taste and it’s perfect in coffee or tea (I have at least two cups a day!). I was surprised at the lack of difference in texture between soya milk and cow’s milk, so it really is a great alternative to put on cereals or in porridge plus it has around 120mg of calcium per 100ml. Find out how you can even make your own soya milk at home:
These deliciously sweet nuts have 264mg of calcium per 100g and are a great addition to your diet because they can be ground and sprinkled onto everything from porridge to salads!
Roughly about a handful equals one portion and they are also high in good fats, which help your body to absorb vitamins. Almonds contain vitamin E which your brain needs to function optimally and even keeps your skin glowing.
If you want to try something different why not use almond flour or ground almonds next time you bake. There are lots of recipes online!
Two heaped teaspoons of tahini paste provide you with a whopping 258mg of calcium which makes it an amazingly high source that can be added to your diet in a variety of ways.
Tahini can be used in sweet and savoury dishes, like brownies and humous. It’s made from toasted ground hulled sesame seeds and has a consistency similar to peanut butter. It’s also high in protein, vitamin E and several B vitamins such as B1 and B2. As you can see it’s absolutely packed full of essential vitamins and minerals so why not try this Roasted Aubergine and Tahini bowl recipe by Deliciously Ella here.
Tofu is a fantastic protein rich alternative to meat in many savoury dishes. It contains 350mg of calcium per 100g and is typically used in many Asian inspired meals.
You might be surprised to know that tofu is actually made from soymilk which is curdled and made into the sliceable finished product. It also contains essential amino acids which are important for building muscle and it’s a great source of tryptophan which helps relieve stress and give you better sleep. Here’s how you can easily make a delicious vegetarian tofu dish:
Broccoli has 47mg of calcium per 100g, so although it’s not as high as the others, it’s still a great way to get calcium into your meals.
Chopping it into salads, blitzing it into broccoli rice, or steaming it for dinner, there are lots of yummy ways to eat it. Other green leafy vegetables also have good levels of calcium and broccoli has high levels of vitamin C and fibre which helps everything from your digestion to immune system. Broccoli is also great for your skin as it helps DNA to repair itself in damaged tissue and aids the formation of collagen for a youthful glow.
As long as you’re getting 700mg of calcium per day you’ll help to prevent conditions like osteoporosis later on in life it will help your muscles to function at optimum level especially if you’re a gym bunny! The key to keeping up your calcium levels is by eating a variety of foods, like soya milk for breakfast, nuts as a snack, and broccoli with your dinner. This way you’ll be sure to get enough calcium if you eat a balanced and varied diet.