Benefits of Calcium

Here are 15 things you should know about calcium:
1. The most common minerals in solid rock derived from igneous sources are silicon and oxygen.
2. Calcium is a chemical element, symbolized Ca, which is the fifth-most abundant element in Earth’s crust and the most abundant metal on Earth.
3. Calcium is essential for animal life and needed by plants as an important nutrient they need to develop their sturdy structure and play a role in photosynthesis for energy production: 2 calcium atoms together with one carbon atom yield one magnesium atom that can be assimilated by plants during photosynthesis to produce sugars that serve as food for both animals and humans.
4. The name calcium comes from the Latin word calx referring to lime or stone.
5. It is the most abundant metal in the human body, which makes up about 1% of the mass of an adult male and 0.35% in an adult female: it is slightly less than 1/50 of the weight of water.
6. The second most abundant mineral in solid rocks after silicon is present in Earth's crust in various ratios.
7. Calcium has many applications
8. Calcium compounds are used to make some reactive materials and protective coatings, to strengthen glasses, plastics and ceramics to prevent corrosion and as a neutralizer for acids; as well as for the extraction of lead from ore or the creation of glass containers through a reduction reaction with sodium.
9. It is also used in the textile industry combined with other materials to give insoluble fibers such as silk, cellulose, and cotton.
10. It is also used to make dyes, lighting materials, and other inks; in the paper industry as a chemical intermediate; and for preparing dairy products including cheese milk, yogurt, and ice cream.
11. Calcium compounds are also used as human and animal medicines, dietary supplements, laxatives, and antacids; to clean metal and to remove grease from cooking utensils.
12. Calcium carbonate (CaCO3) is used in the preparation of cement and mortar; it is extracted using the action of acids
13. Calcium chloride has a wide range of industrial uses, such as making dyes, plastics, sodium superoxide in bleaching or calcination processes some pharmaceuticals such as calcium acetate dihydrate and sodium carbonate; sometimes it is used to create dry cleaning solutions or dehumidifiers.
14. Calcium hydroxide is used as a neutralizing agent for acid solutions and a reducing agent for sulfides and nitrates, which are used in the textile industry.
15. Calcium oxide or calcium carbonate is one of the common materials that make up building blocks known as marble; it is also one of the main ingredients of Portland cement.
Sources of Calcium
Calcium is found in a variety of foods. Most of the calcium in the diet comes from dairy products, but it can also be obtained from leafy green vegetables, fish, poultry, and other animal products. The main sources of calcium in the diet are dairy products and seafood (such as fish with high calcium content), found in all the world’s different regions, but with large differences. Other significant sources of calcium are vegetable and fruit juices, which contain a good portion of water-soluble vitamin C, but only a small amount of minerals.
An important source is also cereals, as nearly every breakfast cereal in the USA has an added calcium supplement. Calcium can be obtained directly from a mineral compound or biologically or through chemically bound compounds that can be augmented by ionizing radiation (ionizing rays). Another source is milk sugar (lactose). Dietary supplements are available that include calcium from a variety of sources.
Sources of Calcium in the Human Body
Calcium is an essential component of bone tissue. It is needed to manufacture and maintain bones, and to keep them from calcifying. The amount supplied by food and other sources can vary greatly, which causes calcium deficiency or hypercalcemia if they are not consumed along with sufficient amounts of vitamin D. About 70% of the calcium consumed in the diet is absorbed by the body, while the rest is excreted as waste. Dietary minerals are used for rapid transport between cells throughout all parts of the body. This allows for information stored at one place to be updated at another. Calcium is also used for muscle contractions, neurotransmission, the secretion of hormones and bile, the sensitivity of cells to hormones, the transmission of nerve impulses between muscles and brain cells, and enzyme activation.
Calcium for Plants
Calcium is the most abundant mineral in plants. It helps the plant to grow, develop and reproduce. The most significant function of calcium in plants is the development and maintenance of cell walls. The role played by calcium in mineral metabolism in the plant is to supply the substance necessary for the growth, formation, and maintenance of the cell walls.
Calcium uptake occurs through a process called root uptake. The roots of plants absorb calcium from the soil by the action of specific ions on the cell membrane.
Plants are capable of accumulating calcium without exceeding their maximum ability to take up other nutrients from soil solution over a long period, due to their capacity for maintaining high concentrations of soluble forms of this mineral within vacuoles. This is in contrast to the uptake of iron, which often results in a damaging reduction (when ions are reduced to their non-soluble form) in its concentration of iron. The high mobility and the ability to store calcium contributes to its abundance.
Calcium is bound with negatively charged particles and can be absorbed by plant roots. It is the only mineral that can grow together with nitrogen and phosphorous through a complex process where it works together with potassium as an exchangeable ion.
Calcium is abundant in many fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, beverages, herbs in tea form. In addition to its importance to animals, calcium plays a very important role in plants. Plants absorb calcium from the soil through the roots and pass it to the leaves where it is available for use by the plant. Calcium is needed in small amounts for normal cell division but is required in larger quantities if cells are to divide accurately as they grow.
These are trying times for all of us. But we can grow another layer of tissue which will not be replaced as rapidly as our bones over time, become very important, and give us a better chance of coping with what we have in store for us.
Calcium for Animals
The importance of calcium for maintaining growth and development in animals is not as critical as with plants. Animals, however, are unable to manufacture adequate amounts of their own calcium, so they must obtain it from the diet or by consuming mineral supplements. Calcium deficiency can lead to poor growth, bone abscesses, and muscle loss. Fatigue results when energy production by the muscles is decreased. In addition, the nervous system can be adversely affected, leading to weakness.
Calcium is necessary for normal muscle contraction and nerve function. It is also needed by cells in other tissues, such as the heart and blood vessels, where it helps to prevent spasms and excessive clotting. The major function of calcium in animals is to promote proper cell division and development. It does so by working with other minerals (such as iron and magnesium) in various enzyme systems participating in cellular metabolism.
In cell division, calcium can play a role in maintaining strong cell walls through a process called transverse tension, which works through the mechanical energy of muscle contraction.
Calcium for Pregnancy
Calcium is present in the body of every prenatal baby. The baby can obtain calcium from the mother, which is used to form strong bones and teeth. This calcium is especially important for young men and women as they develop and mature into adulthood. A woman's body tries to use the most available source of calcium to supply her growing fetus during pregnancy. Most pregnant women need more calcium than usual because they are using it to grow two bodies instead of one.
During pregnancy, your body needs extra calcium to make your baby's teeth and bones. During early development, your baby gets this growth-promoting calcium from your bones. An ultrasound checkup or blood test can determine how much calcium you have left in your bone bank account. If you have a low amount of calcium in your body, your doctor may prescribe calcium supplements to protect you and your baby.
The University of Maryland Medical Center recommends that pregnant women consume 1,000 milligrams of calcium each day. The extra 400 milligrams over the normal daily requirement is intended to restore the levels in the woman's bone bank account. This is accomplished by taking calcium supplements, eating more dairy products, or both.
Calcium for Infants
Infants require a greater intake of calcium than adults do because their growth is relatively rapid and extensive. Calcium is needed for bone formation as it occurs in early childhood and adolescence when bones are growing at a higher rate than at any other point during an individual's lifetime.
Infants' growth is rapid during the first few months after birth, and calcium needs increase accordingly. During this phase of growth, they can easily obtain adequate amounts of the mineral from their diet. After this period, however, the infant's calcium needs increase more slowly as bones begin to mature. The bone needs of an infant are generally estimated to be twice those for adults (2 mg per day and 7 mg per day respectively).
Infants are able to obtain calcium from their diets because most foods contain it in a form that is readily absorbed by the body. Problems arise when adequate amounts of calcium are not present in the diet. Calcium occurs largely in dairy products like milk or milk products. It is found in many vegetables, as well as nuts and seeds. Calcium supplements are sold in both pill and powdered forms. Calcium absorption from supplements depends on several factors, including the form of calcium or other minerals present in the supplement.
The recommended daily amount of calcium for an infant consists of 1 milligram for every 1 ounce of body weight. If an infant consumes too much calcium before birth, it can lead to complications that may include excessive muscle spasms and weakening bones. The proper time to start an infant on a high-calcium regimen is when he is born. If the mother has low blood levels of the mineral prior to delivery, these levels can be restored through breastfeeding.
Calcium for Development
In infants and young children, calcium is important to healthy growth and development. Calcium is necessary for bone growth throughout life. It helps the body regulate its fluid and electrolyte balance and maintains normal muscle contraction.
The most significant function of calcium in the body is to maintain proper blood vessel tone. The role played by calcium in mineral metabolism in the fetus is to supply the substance necessary for the growth, formation, and maintenance of cell walls. This function ensures that even post-natal bones stay strong and well attached to the underlying tissues.
In addition, calcium regulates the contraction and relaxation of muscles and the pumping of the heart. It also aids in nerve conduction. The neurotransmitter acetylcholine depends on calcium to function. Acetylcholine is not only important for movement but also for memory and cognition.
Calcium is necessary for proper cell division in infants, children, and adults. It works with other minerals (such as iron or magnesium) in various enzyme systems involved in cellular metabolism. The body's ability to use calcium is greatly increased after puberty when it begins to increase at a greater rate than that of bone growth. At this point, dietary intake must be increased accordingly to meet these needs.
The most significant function of calcium in the body is to maintain proper blood vessel tone. The role played by calcium in mineral metabolism in the fetus is to supply the substance necessary for the growth, formation, and maintenance of cell walls. This function ensures that even postnatal bones stay strong and well attached to the underlying tissues.
In addition, calcium regulates the contraction and relaxation of muscles and the pumping of the heart. It also aids in nerve conduction. The neurotransmitter acetylcholine depends on calcium to function. Acetylcholine is not only important for movement but also for memory and cognition.
Calcium Deficiency or Overconsumption
Calcium is a vital mineral, but too much or too little is not healthy. If you lack calcium in your diet, your body will try to get it from wherever it can find it. Your bones provide the most reliable source of calcium. Calcium is present in dairy products as well as many foods that contain vegetable compounds called phytates, which interfere with the absorption of calcium and other minerals. Calcium absorption from the diet can also be adversely affected by blood diseases like anemia and iron deficiency anemia.
If you're suffering from hypocalcemia symptoms like muscle cramps, a feeling of weakness or tiredness, or numbness in the hands and feet, then you're probably low on calcium. These are symptoms of hyperparathyroidism, which can be caused by a tumor on the parathyroid gland, kidney disease, or lower amounts of vitamin D in the body. Other problems that can cause a calcium deficiency include some medications, excessive alcohol consumption, and pancreatitis.
If you have too much calcium in your bloodstream, it can lead to calcification of body tissues, which prevents normal function. This is usually caused by hypercalcemia that results from abnormally high levels of parathyroid hormone. The risk for this problem increases if you have certain types of cancer or sarcoidosis. Hypercalcemia is very serious and can cause coma and death if left untreated.
Calcium in Water
While calcium is needed in the human diet, it can also be harmful. If you are suffering from renal failure, you should avoid drinking water that contains high levels of calcium. Water with high mineral content can become concentrated within your body as a result of your kidney disorder. This causes further problems and can lead to severe dehydration and kidney stones.
If you have kidney disease or are at risk for complications due to high calcium levels in your blood, ask your doctor about how much water is safe for you to drink on a daily basis. Your medical team will depend on other information, including medications and health status when determining how much fluid to recommend for you. Keep in mind that you will need more water if you exercise or live in a very hot climate.
Calcium Supplements
While consuming calcium from food sources is the best way to get nutrients that your body needs, there are some health challenges that make this difficult. If you cannot obtain enough calcium from your diet, you may want to consider taking a calcium supplement. You should take an oral supplement only if prescribed by your doctor.
Calcium is available in many forms -- most often as carbonate, citrate, gluconate, lactate, and phosphate salts. Calcium carbonate is the most common form of calcium used for supplements and food fortification. Calcium citrate is the next most common, followed by calcium lactate and calcium gluconate.
The form of calcium you choose depends on your goals for your use. Calcium carbonate supplements can be taken with or without food. This type of supplement may be more convenient, but it means that you're unable to control the exact amount of calcium intake in your diet. Some people prefer to take calcium citrate or another type of supplement that can also be taken with food or as a pill.
Calcium supplements should not be used in place of a balanced diet -- even if a doctor prescribes them to prevent severe health problems like osteoporosis and kidney stones. If you're taking them just to increase your calcium intake, make sure that you only consume the amount recommended by your doctor.
Calcium Supplements and Cancer Risk
There are many substances found in the average diet that has a downside. While calcium is necessary for better health, it can also be toxic to the body if taken in excess or at the wrong time. Certain cancers are linked to high levels of calcium in the blood, and drinking too much water with high calcium content can lead to the calcification of vital body tissues.
This is why too much calcium is linked to increased risks of certain cancers. For example, drinking excessive amounts of milk has been shown to be related to an increased risk for prostate cancer in men. In addition, researchers found that too much calcium increases the risk of colon cancer in rats because it causes alterations in a gene called p21.
Calcium is essential for building strong bones and teeth and for proper heart function. Your body requires a certain amount of calcium on a regular basis, but once that requirement has been met there's no further benefit from consuming more. If excess calcium builds up in your system, it can contribute to serious conditions like kidney stones or damage to your arteries.
Loss of Bone Mineral Density
When you lose calcium, you also lose bone mineral density. There are many causes for the breakdown of bone and many reasons to replenish your supply of calcium. Osteoporosis is a disease characterized by low bone density; it affects both men and women and can cause skeletal pain, fractures, disability, and death. Current research suggests that maintaining a proper diet with adequate levels of calcium is the best way to prevent osteoporosis.
Gaining weight too quickly can also lead to a loss in bone mass. Weight-bearing exercise is important for strengthening bones while dieting helps keep rid of excess fat cells that contribute to osteoporosis.
Conclusion
Calcium is an important mineral that's involved in a variety of bodily processes. While you need calcium to maintain bone health and prevent conditions like osteoporosis, too much calcium can lead to serious health problems. It's also important to consider how much water you drink on a daily basis because the wrong amount of this fluid can lead to more complications. If you're concerned about your calcium levels, talk with your doctor about what levels are safe for you. Your doctor will take other factors into consideration when determining the proper amount of calcium you need in your system.
If you're taking calcium supplements, consult with your doctor about how many of them you can safely take. Calcium is very important to your health and helping your body maintain calcium levels within normal limits will help you live a healthier life. This is especially true if you have other medical conditions that might affect your ability to get enough of this nutrient from food sources.