We've all been told that dairy is the best way to get calcium. However, since I've been actively trying to clear up my skin, and living with someone who has a lactose intolerance, I've eliminated dairy from my diet, and household, almost completely.
So where's a quasi-vegan to get their calcium from? The June edition of Shape magazine answers that question easily, as they feature a small section of non-animal sources of calcium suggestions (OK, they actually included sardines in their list, but we'll pretend they didn't):
- Tofu - if you choose a block that is made with calcium sulfate (a curdling agent) then you'll get 431 milligrams (mg) per quarter cup.
- Orange Juice - an 8-ounce glass of calcium-fortified OJ boasts 350 mg and fulfills 120 percent of your daily vitamin C requirement.
- Collard Greens - in just one cup of cooked greens, you'll find 270 mg of calcium, plus 7 grams of fiber. They advise boiling until tender, then sauteing the greens in olive oil.
How does that rate with a glass of nonfat milk?
Even if I were drinking milk regularly, I would never drink nonfat, but that's beside the point. Shape says one glass of nonfat milk contains 299 milligrams, which is a third of your daily dose.
So if you drink a small glass of calcium-fortified orange juice each day, you're getting more calcium than drinking a glass of milk, plus gaining your daily dose of vitamin C. A win-win!
For more suggestions on non-animal based calcium sources, see:
- Eat. Run. Do Yoga. - "Vegan Myth: Calcium"
- The Vegetarian Resource Group (VRG) - "Calcium in the Vegan Diet"
- Soy Stache - Sources of Calcium: Plant-based (vegan) vs. animal sources (features an extensive table of sources, but I find it strangely organized, as I can't say I'd eat 100 grams of fennel seeds in a month, let alone a day!)