Calcium is an important compound for dental health. The chemical element is responsible for "blood clotting, sending nerve signals, releasing hormones and enzymes, as well as muscle and blood vessel contraction and relaxation," and is an essential nutrient for the mineralization of human bones (1-800-DENTIST). Humans store 99 percent of our ingested calcium in bones and teeth and without the organic matter, humans would be at risk for a slew of gum disease and tooth loss. Eating a nutritious diet based on the Government's Food Plate will provide food suggestions for getting the compound, but for the lactose intolerant, eating the two or three cups of recommended (or adults 1200 mg daily for adults) dairy food is not an option. Fortunately there are other food choices that can help deliver the important source of nourishment.
Lactose intolerance is condition where an individual does not naturally produce the enzyme lactase, making it challenging to digest large amounts of lactose, a disaccharide sugar primarily in milk. Estimates suggest that 30 million to 50 million American adults suffer from the condition (http://digestive.niddk.nih.gov/statistics/statistics.htm.). Regardless of if a person is suffering from primary lactose intolerance, secondary lactose intolerance or congenital lactose intolerance, they can experience symptoms including abdominal pain, diarrhea, flatulence, and bloating. As a result many individuals opt to skip the traditional calcium sources such as milk and instead need to eat different foods to get the nutrient that is essential to supporting bone health and preventing dental problems including periodontal disease and tooth decay.
Nature has created a multitude of ways for individuals to get their fair share of the vital nutrient and adults need a minimum of 1200 milligrams daily. The most common sources for calcium are dairy products including milk, cheese and yogurt and fish rich in Omega-3 fatty acids such as salmon, shellfish and sardines. Individuals who prefer dining on a plant based diet also have plenty of delicious ways to get their calcium as tofu, natural soy beans, almonds, dried beans and leafy greens such as kale, broccoli, spinach and cabbage are all vegan friendly sources of the nutrient.
Molasses is a thick natural sweetener commonly used in baking. The food is derived from a number of sources including sugar cane, grapes or sugar beets, and blackstrap molasses (sugar cane boiled three times) provides a healthy dose of calcium for those in need.
Rumor has it that one tablespoon of blackstrap molasses contains 172 mg of calcium (http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?dbid=118&tname=foodspice). Individuals can use the sweet stuff to punch up the flavor in their coffee, tea or any other place where a bit of sugar may be desirable.
Beans have earned the reputation as the 'musical fruit' as legumes are natural high in fiber and provide a healthy challenge to intestines when being digested. Because of the taste, texture and versatility of beans, they are favored by vegetarians and meat eaters following a Meatless Monday philosophy and provide a healthy dose of calcium to those in need. Beans (AKA legumes) such as black beans, soy beans, chickpeas, peanut butter and split peas are excellent sources of the important bone health nutrient.
Leafy greens such as lettuces, bok choy, broccoli, Swiss chard and collard greens have long been some of the best foods to promote dental health. Studies have indicated that women who were also smokers were able to reduce their chances of developing oral cancer when their diet was rich with the food. In addition to those perks, the leafy section of the garden also provides and excellent way to get calcium. Some options for calcium rich leafy greens are cabbage/bok choy ( a half cup serving delivers 190 mg), turnip greens (a half cup serving delivers 104 mg) and broccoli (a half cup serving delivers 33 mg).
Some individuals already rely on these foods for calcium. A doctor can provide an exam for dietary deficiencies and can share if calcium levels are on point and on target. If not, they may suggest a supplement or eating other foods for dental health. Once that is taken care of a dentist can examine teeth and see the impact of healthy eating first hand. Individuals looking for a dentist simply need to call 1-800-Dentist 24/7 to get the name of great dental care provider happy to help.