how do you get your kids enough calcium? - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 05-18-2006, 08:53 AM
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i hope this doesn't make me sound ignorant, as i consider myself to be fairly educated, but here goes:



so, i'm almost halfway through my pregnancy, and it occurred to me yesterday that such a huge emphasis is placed on making sure that kids got enough calcium to "grow big and strong". well, although i'm lacto-ovo, i don't eat much dairy (that's not a good source of calcium anyway), and i'm hoping to raise my future kid/s the same way.



my question is, how do i get them enough calcium? supplements? i can't imagine that i would be able to feed them enough fortified OJ, non-dairy milks, broccoli, tofu, and kale on a daily basis in order for them to meet their requirements. i would appreciate any insight.
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#2 Old 05-18-2006, 09:01 AM
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Hi ,

My kids drink fortified soy milk and rice milk, which has the same amount of calcium as milk.

they also have fort OJ, and they do still eat cheese on occasion.
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#3 Old 05-18-2006, 06:21 PM
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And the recommended amount of calcium for kids is really high. If you find it difficult to reach that level you could give your child chewable tablets to make up the difference, when your child is old enough to take chewables that is (after 2 years I think). That's what we are doing with our 4 year old. I haven't found real recent recommendations but the recommendations I've found are from a couple years ago. For our 4 year old they recommend 800 mg which is really a lot for such a small person.
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#4 Old 05-18-2006, 09:39 PM
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Most chewable tablets have lactose in them, which my kids are allergic to - (the lactose thing is why we went "almost vegan" with them long ago...).



Keep in mind that the Average American Diet is too high in protein, which leaches calcium out of your bones, so you'd need more calcium to compensate too... (http://www.vrg.org/nutrition/calcium.htm#protein)



I use calcium fortified soy and rice milk, as well as the calcium fortified Orange Juice... there are so many things that are "calcium fortified" any more, for kids (or adults) even if they're vegan, that it's way easy to get the RDA.



Other good sources are sesame seeds, tofu processed with calcium sulfate, tempeh, soy yogurt, blackstrap molasses (shudder!!!), tahini, brocolli, almonds, figd and greens like bok choy and such (which I put in smoothies since I know about two kids in the whole world - and they aren't mine - who will just sit down and eat a couple cups of collard greens - heh!)...



Lots of good stuff that kids will (or mght) eat...It's probably easier than you'd think...
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#5 Old 05-18-2006, 10:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tofu-N-Sprouts View Post

greens like bok choy and such (which I put in smoothies since I know about two kids in the whole world - and they aren't mine - who will just sit down and eat a couple cups of collard greens - heh!)

Well, add my daughter to that list of kids you have heard of or "know" She'll eat an entire bunch of collard greens, kale or chard by herself and she would eat them everyday if I gave them to her! Bok choy (especially baby bok choy) is one of her faves and Brussels sprouts are her absolute favorite!

To the OP, I second what has been said here...TNS gave the foods I would have listed You can make mini muffins with blackstrap molasses or make nutbutter coconut dried fruit bars or balls with it too

"Yes! Live! Life's a banquet and most poor suckers are starving to death!" Auntie Mame
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#6 Old 05-19-2006, 09:49 AM
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Quote:
Most chewable tablets have lactose in them, which my kids are allergic to - (the lactose thing is why we went "almost vegan" with them long ago...).



I just looked at the bottle and the one I use (Fry's Calcium Antiacid Tablets) doesn't have lactose.
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#7 Old 05-19-2006, 10:15 AM
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Quote:
i don't eat much dairy (that's not a good source of calcium anyway)



Well, that's a vegan myth. Dairy products are absorbed as well or better than many of the vegan calcium sources. According to the book Becoming Vegan the calcium in:



many green leafy vegetables and calcium citrate malate is absorbed at 40-60% or more



calcium-set tofu and cows milk is absorbed at 31-32%



soy beverages (often fortified with tricalcium phosphate) is absorbed at about 24%



many common beans, almonds and sesame seeds are absorbed at around 20%
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#8 Old 05-19-2006, 09:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Kyo View Post

Dairy products are absorbed as well or better than many of the vegan calcium sources. According to the book Becoming Vegan the calcium in:



many green leafy vegetables and calcium citrate malate is absorbed at 40-60% or more



calcium-set tofu and cows milk is absorbed at 31-32%



soy beverages (often fortified with tricalcium phosphate) is absorbed at about 24%



many common beans, almonds and sesame seeds are absorbed at around 20%

If I'm reading your post correctly, you're contradicting yourself here... according to your source, calcium from greens absorb at 40 - 60% while from cows milk absorbs at 32-32%... this does not seem to be "as well as or better..." like you're claiming...



Also, the brand of calcium you mentioned appears to be an antacid. Using antacids as a calcium suppliment isn't always that great for kids, and can cause constipation and bowel cramps in younger ones, if not used exactly as directed by a doctor... (that particular brand isn't available here anyway) it sounds like you've checked it out, but just wanted to note that, in case every parent who reads this thread rushes out to stuff their kids full of antacids... just be careful and use a pediatrician or nutritionist recommended brand...
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#9 Old 05-19-2006, 11:51 PM
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Originally Posted by *AHIMSA* View Post

Well, add my daughter to that list of kids you have heard of or "know" She'll eat an entire bunch of collard greens, kale or chard by herself and she would eat them everyday if I gave them to her! Bok choy (especially baby bok choy) is one of her faves and Brussels sprouts are her absolute favorite!



I actually think I remember you saying that somewhere else here on VB, because in all honesty, I don't know ANY kids who'll eat greens, so she must have been who I was thinking of... heehee...



(OK, mine will eat bok choy in stir fry and they love Brussel sprouts, which I hadn't really thought of as a "green" but I guess they are...cool!)
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#10 Old 05-20-2006, 07:33 AM
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Quote:
If I'm reading your post correctly, you're contradicting yourself here... according to your source, calcium from greens absorb at 40 - 60% while from cows milk absorbs at 32-32%... this does not seem to be "as well as or better..." like you're claiming



Nope, I didn't contradict myself. For completeness, I just listed everything they mentioned in the book. The first item I listed doesn't prove my point but the remaining items do.



Quote:
Also, the brand of calcium you mentioned appears to be an antacid. Using antacids as a calcium suppliment isn't always that great for kids, and can cause constipation and bowel cramps in younger ones, if not used exactly as directed by a doctor... (that particular brand isn't available here anyway) it sounds like you've checked it out, but just wanted to note that, in case every parent who reads this thread rushes out to stuff their kids full of antacids... just be careful and use a pediatrician or nutritionist recommended brand



Indeed it is an antiacid and do you know what? Most calcium suppliments are based on calcium carbonate and are antiacids. They have the same active ingredient but the labeling is different. You are right that they can cause constipation but that is true whether they are labeled calcium suppliments or antiacids. So whichever way they are labeled I use them interchangably. Persons that are unsure can get chewable calcium tablets for kids. And honestly, I don't think it's hard to find ones that don't have lactose in them.



And most kids in the U.S. are not lactose intolerant; there's a high percentage of people of some races that are (African and Asian I think). Very few kids are lactose intolerant at an early age. Probably a more important issue on these boards is that a lot of parents are raising their kids vegan.



I'd like to mention something that I was confused about at first. When you figure out how much calcium to use you need to go by the elemental calcium listed on the bottle. Calcium carbonate is 40% calcium by weight but on the bottle they usually prominently say the amount of calcium carbonate/tablet which can be confusing. For example a tablet with 500 mg calcium carbonate has only 200 mg calcium.
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#11 Old 05-20-2006, 02:14 PM
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I did a google search on "tums ingredients" and came up with this web page http://www.drugs.com/PDR/Tums_Regula...m_Tablets.html. As you can see, the ingredients list for Tums doesn't include lactose. And they say that Tums can be used either as an antiacid or a calcium suppliment. The tablets I'm currently using are a Tums equivalent. The calcium carbonate suppliments are very popular because they are: compact, inexpensive and fairly well absorbed when taken with a meal.
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#12 Old 05-24-2006, 04:55 AM
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Sesame seeds is the richest source of calcium you can get, try sprinkling it over cereal etc
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#13 Old 05-27-2006, 01:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tofu-N-Sprouts View Post

I actually think I remember you saying that somewhere else here on VB, because in all honesty, I don't know ANY kids who'll eat greens, so she must have been who I was thinking of... heehee...



(OK, mine will eat bok choy in stir fry and they love Brussel sprouts, which I hadn't really thought of as a "green" but I guess they are...cool!)



I have one, if its green and looks like a leaf he'll eat it. Luckily he hasnt tried to sample anything from the front yard...errr that I know of!
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#14 Old 05-27-2006, 02:49 AM
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Originally Posted by Shellfish View Post

Sesame seeds is the richest source of calcium you can get, try sprinkling it over cereal etc

Unless they're cracked open, though, they're indigestable, so grinding them is in order if you want any nutritional benefit.



I think kids should be served copious quantties of broccoli. I never did understand why Dennis the Menace didn't like the stuff -- I always loved it, even when it came frozen into a brick and boiled into gray oblivion.
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#15 Old 05-27-2006, 01:16 PM
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My dd drinks 2-3 glasses of soy milk sometimes 4. LOL She LOVES her soy milk. She has just recently in the last couple months realized she doesn't drink the same milk as most people. She is only one in school that drinks something different. She doesn't quite understand "WHY"(or reason is different than you might think, lactose not really vegan thing) yet though. BUT she won't touch or drink the cows milk everyone else has. She has taken a few sips in past but never took more than that.



I forgot to bring soy milk once to the in laws when we were going for the evening. AS a quick thought I stopped in gas station since we needed gas anyway and got skim milk thinking that lower fat might help(It does with my lactose issues) but she refused to drink it. She hates the taste and I don't blame her. I only ever used it really for cereal. LOL





anyway I'm confidant dd gets a good balance of calcium. I also do calcium fortified OJ but water it down a lot but not a daily thing like you said. You'd be surprised the foods that have lots of calcium.



Ive recently started adding a vitamin into dd's day she asks for it in morning its chewable one that does have calcium so I feel better that on days she lacks some she has backup.



You could always put the foods into fitday or sparkpeople.com and watch the calcium to see if you even have a reason to stress it.
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#16 Old 06-05-2006, 12:17 PM
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can you guys recommend an unsweetened soymilk that is a good source of calcium for the kiddies? i am drinking whole foods' organic soymilk right now, since it has 30% calcium, but it's not unsweetened. previously i was drinking trader joe's unsweetened organic soymilk, but it only had 2% calcium.
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