When we think about calcium, images of bones, teeth and dairy products usually pop into our minds. But how much do you know about Calcium, and I wonder how many expectant and new mothers are actually getting their recommended daily dose of the mineral.
Calcium is an essential mineral for our bodies as it plays a significant role in bone and teeth development and strength; muscular contractions, and neural and immune system function. When we are pregnant, not only must we continue to feed our own calcium stores, but also that of the rapidly growing human within our womb. Women who do not supplement themselves effectively during pregnancy may experience post-partum calcium deficiency symptoms such as:
- muscle cramping
- dry skin
- brittle nails
- Menstrual problems
- bone fractures, and ultimately more serious complications like:
Dairy products are a great source of calcium, but here are a few lesser known excellent sources of calcium we can consume without excessive store-bought supplementation:
- Flax and roasted sesame seeds
- Dried figs and apricots
- Soya products
- Green leafy vegetable (Kale, spinach, broccoli)
It is important to remember that VITAMIN D aids our bodies in absorbing calcium. Effective and healthy foods containing high levels of vitamin D are fish, eggs and mushrooms.
Why not try this quick and easy trail mix recipe for a nutritious, filling and calcium-boosting snack:
Combine a handful of almonds, flax seeds, sesame seeds, sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds and diced dried apricots. Perhaps pop a little jar in your handbag or desk drawer to curb pregnancy cravings… Enjoy xxx