Alternative Calcium Sources for Patients suffering from Lactose Intolerance and restricted/prohibited from consuming Calcium from animal sources

Calcium is an important nutrient in our diet. Normally in our diet milk and milk products, eggs, meat and meat products contribute to the maximum extent for our calcium requirements. In certain conditions it becomes difficult/impossible to depend on these sources of calcium, for example, people suffering from lactose intolerance /milk intolerance cannot consume milk and milk products, for Vegans and patients who have restrictions on consuming calcium from non-vegetarian sources, all these calcium sources are not advisable.

Calcium is an essential nutrient for healthy bones and teeth. It also helps in clotting of the blood for contraction and relaxation of muscles and nerve functions. Human body uses 99% of its calcium to keep bones and teeth strong and thus support the skeletal structure and function. It also plays key role in blood clotting, muscle contraction and nerve functions. Calcium is also stored in endoplasmic reticulum in non muscle cells. Calcium requirement for ladies increases after menopause.

In such cases people have to depend on the vegetarian sources of calcium. It is rather a misconception that the vegetarian diet is poor source of calcium. In fact following vegetarian sources can be excellent way to replenish our calcium requirements:

  • Almonds : Almonds are rich sources of calcium, potassium, vitamin E and Iron.
  • Oranges : Citrus fruits & oranges contain abundant Calcium And Vit. C which can elevate your mood.
  • Sesame seeds: Can be used in wide variety of things like chikki, bread and spices and condiments. It regulates  the blood pressure and reduces the inflammation
  • Ragi is the richest source of calcium can be used as Ragi balls and ragi malt.
  • Tofu: It is a vegetable alternative for paneer which is made from soybean extract.
  • Dried Figs : Fig a dry fruit is the richest source of antioxidants, Calcium and Fibre and also reduces the craving for sweets
  • Basil: Basil is the richest source of calcium as one table spoon of fresh basil provides 5 mg of calcium.