Forget Dairy! 18 Herbs and Seeds High in Calcium

For most of our lives, we’ve all been told to drink plenty of milk for strong bones. This is good advice thanks to the amount of calcium in milk, but there are actually many sources of calcium that are far richer in the nutrient than dairy. Below you’ll learn about some herbs and seeds that, per serving, offer way more calcium than milk, cheese, or any other dairy source.

1. Almonds

Just ½ cup of these nuts will deliver almost 20% of the daily recommended value of calcium for an adult. They are also rich in protein and omega-3 fatty acids, serving as a healthy, filling snack.

2. Chia Seeds

Another option that will provide you with almost 10% of your daily calcium needs, chia seeds also reduce blood pressure, promote weight loss, and can reduce arthritis pain. One tablespoon serving of chia seeds will only put you back 70 calories.

3. Quinoa

Sometimes considered a grain, quinoa is actually a seed. Quinoa is extremely rich in protein and offers 8% of one’s daily recommended need for calcium.

4. Kale

You can get about 9% of your calcium needs from one serving of kale, but it is very easy to eat more than one serving in a sitting. At only 34 calories per serving, kale is delicious when grilled with some olive oil, or when added to your soups and salads.

5. Spinach

One cup of raw spinach will meet 9% of your calcium needs. It will also provide you with vitamins A and K, potassium, and fiber.

6. Sesame seeds

You can get almost 10% of your daily calcium needs from a serving of sesame seeds (1 tablespoon). These seeds are easy to munch on by themselves, but can also go well in many breads, pastries, and pasta dishes.

7. White Beans

Not only are white beans rich in fiber and folic acid, but they are also a good source of calcium as well. One ½ cup is all you need to get 10% of the calcium you need each day.

8. Bok Choy

This type of cabbage is rich in fiber, vitamins A and C, and calcium. A typical serving will provide you with 11% DV of calcium.

9. Dried Figs

A serving as small as two dried figs will give you about 6% of the recommended DV of calcium, and only cost you 40 calories.

10. Broccoli

A typical serving of one cup of this cruciferous vegetable will give you ample vitamin K as well as 74 mg of calcium.

11. Organic Soybeans

Soybeans are rich in a variety of vitamins and minerals, and are an excellent source of low-calories protein. In one ½ cup serving, soybeans will provide you with 131 mg of calcium (or about 13% DV).

12. Flaxseed

One tablespoon of flaxseed will provide 30 mg of calcium, and is easy to sprinkle into most dishes, from cereal to pastas.

13. Brazil Nuts

Although they are pretty high in calories, one cup of Brazil nuts will fill you up thanks to the protein, and one serving will satisfy 21% of your daily calcium needs.

14. Arugula

Arugula makes for a great addition to any salad, and is rich in a wide variety of vitamins and minerals, including calcium. One cup of this veggie will only cost you 6 calories, but will provide you with 13% of your DV needs of calcium.

15. Sunflower Seeds

These make for a great snack anytime, or an excellent addition to most salads and pastas. One ½ cup serving will cost you over 300 calories, but will also provide you with 45 mg of calcium.

16. Turnip Greens

These dark greens are rich in iron, vitamin A, and calcium. One cup of this vegetable will only set you back 30 calories and will satisfy 20% of your daily calcium needs.

17. Collard Greens

This traditionally southern dish packs a powerful punch of nutrients, delivering 23% of your daily calcium needs in one serving.

18. Okra

Although not a common dish for everyone, okra is incredibly rich in nutrients including fiber, folate, and calcium. A usual serving of okra will deliver 8% of your daily calcium needs.

All in All

Calcium is crucial to healthy skin, bones, and teeth. By getting enough calcium, you reduce your risk of suffering from arthritis, osteoporosis, and other issues. Add these 18 foods into your diet on a regular basis and you’ll have no problem getting enough calcium.


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