In order to have a healthy smile, you need to eat a diet that’s rich in calcium. In fact, 99% of the calcium your body needs is stored in your teeth and bones. It makes sense that, in order to keep those pearly whites nice and healthy, you need to get plenty of calcium in your diet.
So what exactly does it mean to get enough calcium? Recommended amounts vary depending on a number of factors. Keep reading to learn how much calcium you need and what foods you can eat to get the amount that you need.
How Much Calcium Do I Need?
Everyone needs calcium. But, depending on how old you are and whether you’re pregnant, you may need more or less.
Adults need to eat calcium to maintain healthy teeth and a strong skeletal system, while infants, children, and teens need the nutrients to build healthy bones and teeth.
Find your category on the list below to learn how much you should be consuming each day:
- Pregnant and Nursing Mothers 19 or Older: 1,000 mg
- Pregnant and Nursing Mothers Younger Than 19: 1,300 mg
- Older Adults (51+): 1,200 mg
- Adults (19-50): 1,000 mg
- Older Children and Teenagers (9-18): 1,300 mg
- Young Children (4-8): 800 mg
- Babies and Very Young Children (0-3): 500 mg
What Foods are Good Sources of Calcium?
To provide your body with the calcium it needs each day, you will need to incorporate foods that are good sources into your daily meals and snacks.
If you don’t eat dairy products, don’t worry! While most people associate milk with consuming enough calcium, there are plenty of other sources.
Check out the list below to learn about some foods that have plenty of calcium and exactly how much they contain:
- Okra: 82 mg per cup
- Broccoli: 86 mg per 2 cups
- Tofu: 434 mg per half cup
- Cheddar Cheese: 202 mg per slice
- Sardines: 351 mg per 3.75-ounce can
- Canned Salmon: 232 mg per half can
- Edamame: 98 mg per cup
- 1% Milk: 305 mg per cup
- White Beans: 63 mg per half cup
- Almonds: 75 mg in 23 whole almonds
- Collard Greens: 268 mg per cup
- Kale: 101 mg per cup
- Greek Yogurt: 187 mg per most single-serving containers
- Oranges: 74 mg per large orange and 27 mg per cup of orange juice
Choose your favorite ingredients, and start adding them to your meals! Need some help getting started? Check out this list for some inspiration.