Calcium is one of the 24 vitamins and minerals required for good health in the human body. It is a macromineral due to the relatively large amounts required in the diet (at times exceeding a gram a day) and is predominately found in dairy products and vegetables.
Supporting research & information
Similar to many other nutrients, calcium does follow the general advice of "if the diet is sufficient in calcium then supplementation is unnecessary" and excessive intakes of calcium do not promote greater benefits to health and may simply promote constipation.
Calcium is a mineral that is an essential part of bones and teeth. The heart, nerves, and blood-clotting systems also need calcium to work.
Calcium is used for treatment and prevention of low calcium levels and resulting bone conditions including osteoporosis (weak bones due to low bone density), rickets (a condition in children involving softening of the bones), and osteomalacia (a softening of bones involving pain). Calcium is also used for premenstrual syndrome (PMS), leg cramps in pregnancy, high blood pressure in pregnancy (pre-eclampsia), and reducing the risk of colon and rectal cancers.
Some people use calcium for complications after intestinal bypass surgery, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, Lyme disease, to reduce high fluoride levels in children, and to reduce high lead levels.
Calcium can come from many sources. Calcium-rich foods include milk and dairy products, kale and broccoli, as well as the calcium-enriched citrus juices, mineral water, canned fish with bones, and soy products processed with calcium. Diets high in fermentable fibres (usually found in vegetables) and high enough in bulk and fibre to slow the rate at which food passes through the intestines increase calcium absorption; simply taking a calcium supplement on top of a low fibre/low bulk diet will not be as effective as consuming the calcium through dairy or even vegetables.
Calcium carbonate is used as an antacid for “heartburn.” Calcium carbonate and calcium acetate are also used for reducing phosphate levels in people with kidney disease.
Calcium can interact with many prescription medications, but sometimes the effects can be minimized by taking calcium at a different time. Consult your GP or health care professional if you have any questions.
How does it work?
The bones and teeth contain over 99% of the calcium in the human body. Calcium is also found in the blood, muscles, and other tissue. Calcium in the bones can be used as a reserve that can be released into the body as needed. The concentration of calcium in the body tends to decline as we age because it is released from the body through sweat, skin cells, and waste. In addition, as women age, absorption of calcium tends to decline due to reduced oestrogen levels. Calcium absorption can vary depending on race, gender, and age.
Bones are always breaking down and rebuilding, and calcium is needed for this process. Taking extra calcium helps the bones rebuild properly and stay strong.
Could Calcium Deficiency Be Causing Your Fatigue?
Though calcium is prevalent in food, calcium deficiency remains a remarkably common condition. For many people, low calcium can be a contributing factor in a number of medical conditions and fatigue.
Among all of the vitamins and minerals that can cause fatigue when a deficiency is present, calcium is one that is often overlooked. In large part, that is probably due to the fact that it is a mineral that is seemingly everywhere. Many food products proudly advertise that they are “calcium-fortified,” and some of the basic staples of life in the developed world contain calcium as a matter of course. Despite that prevalence, however, tens of millions of people suffer from this deficiency.
WHAT IS CALCIUM AND HOW DOES IT BENEFIT YOU?
As the most well-represented of all minerals in the human body, it is only natural that adequate daily intake of calcium would be essential for health. This mineral promotes good bone health, but it also contributes to the health of the nerves, the muscles, and the heart. What many people do not realize is that calcium also has a role in blood pressure maintenance, clotting, and securing the digestive system against the threat of cancer. It has also been linked to more consistent mood and a reduction in food cravings.
A calcium deficiency can lead to fatigue, as the health of bones, muscles, and nerves are compromised. In addition, many people with low calcium levels experience a loss of appetite, which results in a reduced consumption of the nutrients the body needs for energy production.
To absorb calcium properly, you need vitamin D. So when supplementing, always consider how those two vitamins interact with one another when you set your dosage.