As a child I was always told to drink my milk because it was good for my bones. In order for me to have strong bones and teeth, my parents used to force me to drink milk. I knew drinking milk had something to do with calcium, but not entirely too sure.
I think most people associate calcium deficiency with an old man or women hunched over because they have osteoporosis and brittle bones. But, you don’t have to be old to have a calcium deficiency. Only 32% of U.S. adults met the adequate intake (AI) for calcium through diet in 1999–2004.
On the flip side, taking too much calcium, including calcium supplements and self treating yourself without discussing with your physician can also lead to health problems, or even death. So, be aware and speak with your physician when it comes to adding more calcium to your diet.
Today, I want to discuss how you can get up to 90% of your daily recommended calcium needed of about 1000 – 1200 mg of this good nutrient from eggs. Eggs are a great source of calcium, but you might be wasting a majority of the eggs calcium.
But before I show you how you can do this, I want to explain to you why calcium is so important.
What Is Calcium?
Calcium is the gold medal winner of strong bones and teeth. Calcium continuously works to maintain healthy bones and builds them. Calcium is required for vascular contraction and vasodilation, muscle function, nerve transmission, intracellular signaling and hormonal secretions.
Only 1% of calcium intake is needed to carry out these functions. The remaining 99% of calcium in your body is stored in your bones and teeth.
Not getting all of your essential nutrients also puts you at risk for developing certain diseases – yikes!
Signs of calcium deficiency include:
- Muscle cramps
- Poor appetite
- Abnormal heart rhythms
That’s why you should aim to get 1,000 – 1,200 mg of calcium per day depending on your age. You don’t have to chug a gallon of dairy milk to meet your calcium goals for the day; yogurt and cheese are also great sources.
But the best source of calcium may actually surprise you: dark leafy greens. Kale actually has more bioavailable calcium than milk.
for every gram of kale there is 1.35 mg of calcium. For every gram of whole milk, there is 1.13 mg.
It is important to make sure that you are balancing your calcium intake with other vitamins, such as vitamin D, K2, and magnesium.
Having unbalanced levels of calcium and other nutrients, can lead to serious side effects including stroke and heart attack.
Am I Getting Enough Calcium?
To determine how much calcium is in a particular food, check the nutrition facts panel of the food label for the daily value (DV) of calcium. Food labels list calcium as a percentage of the DV. This amount is based on 1,000 mg of calcium per day. For example:
- 50% DV of calcium equals 500 mg.
- 25% DV of calcium equals 250 mg of calcium.
- 40% DV of calcium equals 400 mg of calcium.
Certain groups of people have harder times getting the recommended amounts of calcium. Postmenopausal women struggle because they experience greater bone loss and do not absorb calcium as well. Sufficient calcium intake from food, and supplements if needed, can slow the rate of bone loss.
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Vegans and ovo-vegetarians (vegetarians who eat eggs but no dairy products), because they stay away from the dairy products that contain large amounts of calcium.
If you’re like me, you love making some eggs for breakfast every morning. Whether you’re a scrambled, over-easy, or poached eggs kind of person, you’re probably tossing your eggshells in the garbage.
But did you know…
Eggshells are made up of 95% calcium carbonate? That’s right, the mineral vital to your bone, muscle, and enzyme health. And if you are like me, you most likely are throwing the shells away.
Let me introduce you to a better way to use your old egg shells…
When it comes down to the facts, the NCBI shows that eggshell calcium can help in the prevention and treatment of osteoporosis. Clinical studies in postmenopausal women and women with senile osteoporosis showed that eggshell powder reduces pain.
How To Make EggShell Calcium
First, you are definitely going to need eggs…obviously. So grab a carton of eggs.
Try and get eggs fresh from the farm if you can. If not, try to get eggs from chickens that are not fed soy. Pay the extra price since this will serve as a supplement and is much cheaper than buying calcium tablets.
A little tip never hurt…
The thicker the eggshell, the more nutrients.
You will also need…
- 1 stock pot
- A coffee grinder
- A container like a Mason jar to store the shells.
After you use your eggs for breakfast or making your favorite desserts, place the shells back in the carton until you have 12 or more.
- Rinse the eggshells in water. Try and remove all of the egg whites, but not the white membranes inside the eggshells.
- Pour 6 cups of filtered water into your pot and bring it to a boil.
- Place the eggshells in the boiling water to kill off any bacteria and harmful pathogens that may be living.
- Set your timer for 10 minutes.
- Drain the shells and let them sit on a cookie sheet over night to dry. After 12 – 24 hours, place the shells in the oven at only 200F for about 10 minutes to completely dry.
- Once they are completely dry, ground them into a powder in your coffee grinder.
- Store them in your Mason jar for future use.
How To Consume Eggshell Calcium
1/2 tsp of eggshells contains approximately 900 mg. of calcium.
You can consume by mixing in a small amount of water with a meal. Consume 3/4 to 1 tsp daily, divided in 3 servings with meals.
I like to add the powder to my smoothies every morning to give me the calcium boost I need. I don’t drink much milk or eat much dairy, so this and kale is where I get most of my calcium.
Don’t consume more than 1 tsp a day as it can irritate sensitive digestive tracks.
Eating eggshells can lead to stronger bones, and healthier lives. Eating a variety of food sources and avoiding unhealthy foods, like fast foods can help your body fight free radicals and cancers, lose weight, and boost memory.
If you’re following specific dietary requirements — ahem vegans, I’m talking to you — you should consider adding supplements or at least a multivitamin to make sure you’re not missing out on key nutrients and sabotaging your health efforts.
Be aware of what you eat. Do your research, because too much of anything and too little can be harmful.
What are your thoughts on eating eggshells? Do you think the benefits of eating eggshells can make you healthier?