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Calcium Supplements For Women

Calcium supplements for women should be smaller in size than those for men.  Calcium-Supplements-women | ArticleIt reflects the realities of mouth and throat size differences between the sexes.  Because calcium is viewed more as a female nutrient, there are more calcium supplements for women than for men. Beyond their feminine packaging, many of these calcium brands miss the obvious point. Their calcium supplements for women offer pills that are large. Some even contain dyes and preservatives.

Times When Calcium is Most Needed
Women need calcium most during pregnancy, menopause, and postmenopause.  Calcium experts would argue that women of all ages need sufficient calcium daily. That’s true, but the greatest calcium demands on a woman’s body occur during pregnancy, menopause, and the postmenopausal years.

According to the March of Dimes website, entitled Calcium and Pregnancy: What you need to know,
“The recommended amount of calcium for women ages 19 to 50, pregnant or not, is 1,000 milligrams (mg) per day. (For teenage girls up to age 18, it is 1,300 mg daily.) That's right—the amount of calcium you need each day remains the same before, during and after pregnancy.

Calcium-Supplements-Women | Article"During the last two trimesters of pregnancy and during breastfeeding, your body absorbs more calcium from food than when you are not pregnant. Your baby needs this extra calcium to build healthy teeth and bones. If you don't get enough calcium in your diet during pregnancy, the calcium your baby needs will be taken from your bones.    

Unfortunately, many women do not get enough calcium. The average woman gets only about 700 mg every day. Aside from not eating enough calcium-rich foods, many women rely too much on vitamin supplements. Supplements often contain less than one-third of the recommended daily amount of calcium.”

The calcium supplements for women referred to in the last sentence are probably prenatal vitamins. According to WebMD.com, a good prenatal vitamin has approximately:

  • 400 mcg of folic acid
  • 400 IU of vitamin D
  • 200 to 300 mg of calcium
  • 70 mg of vitamin C
  • 3 mg of thiamine
  • 2 mg of riboflavin
  • 20 mg of niacin
  • 6 mcg of vitamin B12
  • 10 mg of vitamin E
  • 15 mg of zinc
  • 17 mg of iron

A calcium supplement can be taken in addition to a prenatal vitamin. A daily serving of most provide 800 to 1200 mg of calcium. You can adjust your calcium supplement intake to complement your particular prenatal vitamin.

Choosing the Right Calcium Supplement
Menopause and postmenopause may be even more taxing on a woman’s calcium stores. As we age, gastric acid production typically declines, so it may become harder to absorb calcium.  Calcium-Supplements-Woman | ArticleWhen choosing among the calcium supplements for women, consider pill size, solubility (not needing food to be absorbed), vitamin D levels and one free of soy estrogen, if that is a concern.  The FDA recommends women 50+ consume 1200 mg of calcium daily, so calcium supplements which provide less than 1000 mg daily may be less attractive.  Some, such as AdvaCAL INTENSIVE, actually provide 1200 mg of calcium in two servings of 3 small capsules each. Bone loss is a big concern starting at menopause. A brand clinically shown to build bone density should be preferred when selecting among calcium supplements for women