Available Now
MetroKids

Calcium Sources for Kids

The key to building healthy bones for life

(page 1 of 2)

Who would have thought that osteoporosis — the brittle-bone disease that afflicts 10 million Americans over age 50 — is something you need to worry about for your kids? Not Maribel Burke. A few years ago, her 9-year-old daughter, Christina, mysteriously fractured each arm twice within 18 months. "The first time she was just catching a kickball," Burke says. It happened again when another child bumped into her on a slide. As one cast came off, another went on.

Calcium Sources

Drinking milk and eating dairy products are the best ways to get your daily calcium, but these foods help kids inch up to their recommended daily allowance (RDA), too.

  • Almonds, 1 oz: 9% RDA
  • Broccoli, cooked, ½ cup: 6% RDA
  • Canned salmon, 1 cup: 30% RDA
  • Edamame, ½ cup: 19% RDA
  • Flour tortilla, 8% RDA
  • Honey Nut Cheerios Milk ’n Cereal Bar: 31% RDA
  • Kix cereal,  1¹/3  cup: 19% RDA
  • Sunflower seeds, 1 cup: 11% RDA
  • Tofu (calcium sulfate–fortified), ½ cup: 26% RDA
  • Total Raisin Bran, 1 cup: 125% RDA
  • Waffles (calcium-fortified), 2: 13% RDA
  • White beans, cooked, 1 cup: 10% RDA
  • Wonder Kids Calcium-Fortified Bread, 1 slice: 25% RDA

After putting Christina through a bone-density study, Maribel received the shocking news: Her daughter had osteoporosis.

The bone-study doctor was taken aback, too — until Burke explained that her pediatrician had told Christina to stay away from dairy products as a hedge against the migraines she had been suffering. Once Christina started drinking milk again and taking a supplement containing calcium and vitamin D, her bone density improved, and she hasn't had a fracture since.

This may sound like an extreme example, but a surprising number of kids today have weak bones that are fracturing at alarming rates. The most recent study on thetopic found that kids 8 to 14 in the Mayo Clinic’s hometown of Rochester, MN, suffered broken bones 41 percent more frequently than children did in the previous 20-year span.

"Kids are more calcium-deficient than ever before," says lead researcher A. The reason? Children are drinking way too much soda and juice and not nearly enough milk.

Calcium and vitamin D (which helps the body absorb calcium) are essential for children to develop strong, healthy bones. Nearly half of preschoolers and more than 60 percent of 6- to 11-year-olds fail to meet their daily calcium requirements, a lack that sets them up for a bone-density deficit in the future. But take the following steps now, and there’s still time to turn things around.

Add your comment:
Advertisement

More on this topic »Health & Nutrition

Vaccinations: What Parents Need to Know

Vaccinations: What Parents Need to Know

Immunization facts to help you plan your kids' vaccination schedule. Plus, the truth about vaccines and autism.

Kids in the Kitchen: After School Snacks

Kids in the Kitchen: After School Snacks

Get the kids in the kitchen to help make easy, healthy after school snacks.

MK Memo

MK Memo: Moms Know
Study Skills: An Integral Part of Learning

Study Skills: An Integral Part of Learning

Expert tips on how to diagnose whether your child has a study skills problem

Comments

What Is Constitution Day?

What Is Constitution Day?

All about Constitution Day, Sept. 17

Comments

September 2014 Preview

September 2014 Preview

Back to school articles and reasons why parents need to volunteer in their kids' school

Comments

How to Apply for and Win College Scholarships

How to Apply for and Win College Scholarships

8 steps to securing scholarships for college

Comments

Promoting Self-Confidence in Kids

Promoting Self-Confidence in Kids

Promote self-confidence in kids in three easy steps.

Comments

MomSpeak

The voices of local moms
Voter Registration: Why & When

Voter Registration: Why & When

Why readers need to register to vote for the Nov. 4 election. Plus, voter registration deadlines for Pennsylvania, Delaware and New Jersey

Comments

From the Mouths of Babes

From the Mouths of Babes

A sweet comment by her 4-year-old daughter helped one busy mom take stock of what's important.

Comments

Hidden Philly: The Fairmount Water Works

Hidden Philly: The Fairmount Water Works

A visit to the Fairmount Water Works teaches a Philly family about their water supply.

Comments