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March 2004 - Dr. Hoffman's Recommendation of the Month : Drink Milk !!

Dr. Hoffman recommends encouraging children to drink milk to build bone mass to a maximum. We all need Calcium, but bones can only be built up till age 25 !

How do we build strong bones?

People are very interested in osteoporosis and calcium loss, but the main focus should be on building bones full of calcium, rather than slowing calcium loss. In my clinic, most interest about calcium comes from older women, whereas bone density can only be built up till age 25 or 30 . So a fifty year old woman asking about calcium intake is asking about twenty years too late for herself; but she can help her children and grandchildren!

Calcium intake is important at all ages; but the major impact is in the early years when the bones can actually be built stonger. Almost all the calcium in our bodies is in our bones; and can weight up to 10 kg! The amount of calcium we amass in our bones depends almost entirely on what we eat.

The rate of calcium loss is relatively stable. We lose about 1% a year from age 45. Women have a more complex problem, and lose 2-3% a year from menopause. We define a "fragile" bone as a bone that has lost over one-third of its calcium. An "osteoporetic" bone has less than 66% of its peak calcium content. The more calcium we have in our bones, the older we will be before our bones become fragile. We can increase our bone's calcium content by up to an additional kilogram!

Milk products are an excellent source of calcium. Encouraging children to drink milk or eat milk products daily increases the calcium in their bones, is nutritious, and helps weight-loss in over-weight children. For those who do not like milk, calcium should be obtained from other sources, such as Soy products, or canned fish (that are eaten with their bones ) such as sardines or salmon.

We are supposed to eat 1000 mg of Calcium a day . ( depending on age; age 9 - 18 years 1300 mg/day )

A cup a milk has 200 mg of calcium. So does a cup of yogurt; or slice of cheese. 100 grams of Tofu has 205mg calcium.

Dairy products Calcium Content:

  • Milk (8 oz.) 300 mg
  • Yogurt (8 oz.) 400 mg
  • Hard cheese (1 oz.) 200 mg
  • Cottage cheese (1/2 cup) 100 mg
  • Frozen yogurt (1 cup) 200 mg
  • Ice cream (1 cup) 160 mg
  • Parmesan cheese (grated, 1 Tablespoon) 69 mg

Fruits and Vegetables

  • Orange (1 medium) 50 mg
  • Orange juice, calcium fortified (1 cup) 300 mg
  • Broccoli, or lima beans (1/2 cup) 90 mg
  • Figs, dried (5 medium) 126 mg

Other Foods

  • Soymilk, fortified (1 cup) 400 mg
  • Total cereal (1 cup) 300 mg
  • Total Raisin Bran (1 cup) 200 mg
  • Salmon, canned with bones (3 oz.) 160 mg
  • Sardines, canned with bones (3 oz.) 322 mg
  • Tofu (4 oz.) 152 mg
  • Almonds (dried roasted, whole 1/3 cup) 126 mg
  • Bread (1 slice) 15-40 mg
  • Cheese Pizza (1 slice) 150 mg
  • Dried beans (lima, navy, kidney) 25-64 mg
  • Coffee Beverages Caffe latte (12 oz.) 412 mg
  • Caffe mocha (12 oz.) 337 mg
  • Cappuccino (12 oz.) 262 mg

In Dr Hoffman's clinic you can get a copy of the "Calcium Test" in Hebrew. It has a detailed list of foods rich in Calcium, and makes it easy to figure out your daily calcium intake. We can then figure out if you need to take a calcium supplement or just change what you eat. ( I have been unable to find a copy in English ). I hope to have a copy of the test on my "tips" page soon.
Pay attention to your children's Calcium intake!

Studies show that children are not getting enough Calcium in their daily diet. Ninety percent of a woman's bone mass is achieved by age 17 ; 99% by age 26.Only 12% of girls ages 12-19 years old get enough Calcium ( and 32% of boys ); and 16% of women age 20 - 29 .

The future generation's bones depend on a Calcium rich diet. Parents decide what their children eat and drink.

Encourage them to think of Calcium.