Is Your Child Getting Enough Calcium?
A cup of milk contains about 300 mg of calcium, and
Hi I'm Dr. Roy Benaroch with Pediatric Physicians PC and we're here at About.com to talk about calcium. How do you know if your child is getting enough of this essential nutrient.Calcium is essential for the health of growing bones, and the calcium that is consumed by children and teenagers accounts for almost all of the bone calcium that should last throughout a person’s life. So it is important that parents try to ensure that their children are getting enough of this mineral. Although exact calcium needs are influenced by genetics, environment factors, and exercise habits, good consensus recommendations for children are for toddlers to get 500 mg a day, school aged children 800 mg a day, and tweens and teenagers 1300 mg of calcium per day. The most common and readily available source of calcium is in milk and milk products. A cup of milk contains about 300 mg of calcium—and low-fat or skim milk contains even more. Cheese, yogurt, and ice cream are all good calcium sources, as are spinach and beans (especially if cooked from dry). Some juices and cereals are fortified with calcium. Parents should keep in mind that in addition to calcium itself, children need to get enough vitamin D to absorb the calcium in their diet. Most vitamin D comes from sunlight exposure. Vitamin D can also come from fortified milk. Few other common foods contain appreciable amounts of vitamin D. Also, regular exercise is important to help bones absorb and hold on to calcium. Thanks for watching for more information visit About.com