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Bone Food
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If you were a vertebra in your neck, what would you be snacking on? That was my question after an accident fractured part of my C-3 and C-4 vertebrae.

Bones are made of calcium phosphate, calcium carbonate, and about 1- 2% is calcium fluoride. So, I should start taking calcium pills, right? Well, yes I certainly do need to be taking calcium into my system; however, the latest research indicates that food items rich in calcium tend to make the bones stronger than merely taking calcium supplements in pill form.

In a recent study it was found that women who ate calcium enriched foods had higher bone density in their spines than women who merely tried to take care of their calcium needs by taking calcium supplements. The study noted that those who ate calcium rich foods and took calcium supplements had higher bone mineral density than either of the other groups.1

So what I really need to consider is not only taking calcium supplements, but also getting calcium through the foods I eat. What are some of these calcium rich foods?
  • 1 glass skim milk- 290 mg
  • 1 small tub yogurt- 240 mg
  • 1 slice most cheeses- 150 -200 mg 
  • 1/2 cup broccoli- 21 mg
  • 1/2 cup red kidney beans - 60 mg
  • 12 almonds- 62 mg
  • 4 figs- 52 mg
  • 1 slice whole wheat bread- 32 mg
  • 1 serving rice- 32 mg
  • 4 ounces of tofu - 250 mg
  • 1 slice cheese cake- 94 mg (Don’t get any ideas!)
But is there something I'm missing here? Should I be taking something to help the calcium to be better absorbed into my bones? Yes, I should. Vitamin C helps with calcium absorption and is found in many foods including citrus fruits.

In addition to this, Vitamin D is important. You can take supplements, and eat foods high in Vitamin D, but the best way is to go catch some sun! It would take you 10 tall glasses of vitamin D fortified milk just to get the minimum amount of this vitamin you need in a single day. It's much easier and much cheaper I might add to just get a little sun.2

So if you're wondering where you're going to be seeing me, just be looking for some guy wearing a neck brace. I'll be the one eating the cherry cheesecake while I'm basking in the sun! And while I'm doing that, deep down inside my neck I can almost hear the vertebrae saying, " Mmm…mmm."

"I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful,
I know that full well" (Psalm 139:14).

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By Ron Reese. Copyright © 2013 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelinesScripture taken from the NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION ®.

1 American Journal of Clinical Nutrition;  May, 2007

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