CALCIUM -VITAMIN D3- Beyond Bone Health

Calcium and Vitamin D are nutrients that are indispensable across all age groups. 

Ever wondered why we take these 2 nutrients together? It is because Vitamin D plays a major role in increasing the absorption of Calcium. 

Their requirements increase during different stages of life such as

● If you are above the age of 30

● Living a stressful life

● Inadequate food intake

● Pregnancy & lactation

● Joint pains & inflammation

● During Menstruation & Postmenopause

The first thing that crosses our mind when we think about Calcium and Vitamin D is that they are important for our bones and teeth. 

But in addition to this, they have numerous other functions in our body including

● Calcium is required in the muscles by the 2 proteins called troponin and tropomyosin for muscle contraction

● Calcium Regulates blood pressure and blood flow by contracting and relaxing the blood vessels.

● Helps cells to communicate- This is crucial for the process of proprioception (awareness of the position and movement of the body) by optimising the mind-muscle link

● Reduces menstrual cramps when taken before and during periods

● Boost serotonin & GABA neurotransmitters that keep you happy

● Aid in improving blood sugar levels and improve insulin resistance

● Regulates male and female sex hormones

● Strengthens immunity

● Regulates normal triglyceride levels in the blood

We have more calcium in our bodies than any other mineral. Surprisingly, we only use 1 percent of our bodies’ available calcium to carry out all these critical functions mentioned above. 

The other 99 percent remains in our bones and teeth, where it is used for the structural function

A diet that is high in processed foods, caffeine, alcohol, sugar and sodium, regular intake of antacids and laxatives reduces calcium absorption.

Sources of these 2 nutrients include –

I. Calcium sources include Dark green leafy vegetables, cheese, yoghurt, milk, sesame seeds

II. Vitamin D sources include oily fish, red meat, organ meats, liver and egg yolk, sunlight, supplements

While it is easy to obtain Calcium through diet and Vitamin D3 through food and sunlight, it often falls short of the daily requirement, especially in an urban lifestyle and thus risks deficiency-related complications later in life. In such cases, supplements can be integrated into daily lifestyles after due consultation with a General Practitioner.