Calcium in Child Nutrition

Calcium in Child Nutrition

  Autor NN Team Data: 14.12.2007

Calcium in Child Nutrition
Find out how calcium consumption can remove osteoporosis, how much calcium children need and what delicious meals can you prepare to consume calcium with pleasure. 

Drink your milk! Perhaps you remember that you heard this from your mother too. And now being parent on you turn, you know that milk is calcium and calcium means strong bones. But have you thought what the long-term effects of lack of calcium are? And how much milk is enough? 

Children need a lot of calcium for proper bone development. If they do not consume enough calcium and their bone density is lower, later in life they will get osteoporosis, a complex disease in which bones become so fragile that they can break to the smallest trauma. It is extremely important to get your child used to a healthy diet, because they most need calcium between 11 and 24 years. With adolescence, dairy products should be part of our diet. But for no reason, drinking milk doesn't make you 'cool', and girls tend to keep diets and to exclude milk from their nutrition. In fact, most adolescents drink plenty of juice, which inhibit calcium production. 

A healthy diet should include two servings of dairy a day for children between two and six years. Children between one and three years are recommended 500 mg calcium daily, while those between four and eight years should consume 800mg calcium per day. 

Look carefully the labels. The amount of calcium is usually expressed as a percentage of recommended daily doses of 1000mg. If a product contains 25% calcium, it means it has 250 mg. 

You can increase the amount of calcium consumed by your child if you knowwhere to find.

Milk. Milk is the best product, one of the best sources of calcium, for it contains vitamin D also, which helps calcium fixation. The child will not have to drink a lot of milk. Calcium absorption from milk is much higher compared to other foods. 
If your child suffers from lactose intolerance, you can remain calm. There is also lactose-free milk. There are tablets or drops you can put in milk to ease digestion. Experts recommend yogurt and cheese as alternatives, which will be better tolerated by the body. 

Flavoured milk. Do not worry. Milk chocolate or strawberry flavoured does not contain much sugar. Studies have shown that people who use flavoured milk drinks give up juices. 

Traditional sources. Milk is the most common source of calcium but it is not the only one. Yogurt, cheese, canned fish (sardines), dark green leafy vegetables, broccoli, soy, pudding made with milk are also important sources of calcium for your child. Even ice cream brings a lower quantity of calcium in the body of your child. 

Cheese. You do not have to avoid all types of cheese because they are high in fat. Mozzarella and Parmesan cheese and are low in fat and are excellent sources of calcium. 

Yogurt. Yogurt is a good source of calcium and today yogurts have a creamy texture that attracts children. There are many types of low-fat yogurt, especially for children. Yogurt contains more vitamin D, is a good source of protein and contains live and active cultures. 

Now that you know which the most important sources of calcium are, here is how you can introduce these products in your child's diet: 
  • Always add milk in hot chocolate. 
  • As a snack, offer him yogurt, pudding made with milk or a bowl of milk with cereal. 
  • Melt cheese and put it over cooked vegetables or baked potatoes. 
  • Give them shakes of milk and fruit. 
  • Put grated cheese in the omelette. 
  • Add to salads leafy dark green vegetables. 
  • Give him a delicious yogurt juice, orange juice with calcium and ice cubes. 
  • When cooking, use yogurt instead of mayonnaise or sour cream. 
  • Use milk instead of water for pancakes and soups. 

Read the English version of this article: Calcium in Child Nutrition