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Natural Health, Issue #017 -- Facts About Calcium Supplements
May 27, 2012

Calcium Supplements,
Bad for You?

Calcium supplement use may raise heart attack risk,” reads the sensationalistic ABC and CBC News headline a few days ago. A friend on facebook writes, “Once again, the more we learn about supplements, the more it seems they may not be so good for you.” Of course I was quick to respond to his sweeping generalization that was completely false.

It’s no wonder that my page about “Too much calcium,” is one of my most visited webpages.

This is not the first time we have heard about the negative effects of calcium supplements. The latest study, tracking almost 24,000 men and women, ages 35 to 64 in Germany, found that the risk of a heart attack almost doubled with the calcium supplement takers. In the video clip by CBC, one of the women interviewed (who was not in the study,) said she was prescribed 2000 mg of calcium, which had been reduced to 1500 and now to 1000.

Here are the facts
about calcium supplements:

  1. The body can only absorb 500 mg of calcium at a time, so if you are taking more than that, the excess calcium can cause elevated blood calcium.
  2. 80% of people taking calcium supplements are taking calcium carbonate. This is a chalk like substance that is not absorbable by the body and yes, it can clog the arteries.
  3. Good quality calcium is calcium citrate, chelated calcium, calcium phosphate, dicalcium phosphate and tricalcium phosphate.
  4. Natural, high quality calcium supplements are beneficial to those who need them.
  5. Not everyone or every post-menopausal woman needs calcium supplements, every-body is different and has different needs.
  6. The most important factor in determining bone health is how acidic the body is. A body that is overly acidic leeches calcium from the bones and other minerals from the body. If you are concerned about your bone health or you are at high risk for osteoporosis, check your body pH.

And finally…Milk is not the answer! The article and video clip reminded us that there is 300 mg of calcium in a glass of milk. First of all, the calcium in milk is measured before pasteurization. Pasteurization reduces the amount of available calcium. Second, following pasteurization, almost all of the calcium is rendered into a form that the body can no longer absorb. The calcium in vegetables is 80% bio available, so it is easily absorbed by the body.

North America and the Scandinavian countries consume the highest amount of dairy in the world and have the highest amount of osteoporosis. The reason? Dairy is acidifying to the body.

For optimal health, eat a varied diet with plenty of fresh whole foods to obtain your calcium naturally. If you need supplements, feel free to contact me and I would be happy to recommend some.

To your natural health!

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