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From: Steve (
Subject:         Calcium?
Date: September 2, 2007 at 1:33 am PST

The US RDA tells people to get *approximately* a gram a day in calcium. The UK RDA is slightly lower. The government also admits that all of the RDAs have padding to cover diverse needs of all individuals in a group. Some vegan nutrition authors have also expressed the belief that vegans need less calcium due to a lower protein intake, differences in food pH, and getting more of other nutrients.

Several vegan nutrition authors have recently come out and told vegans that they should try to get the US RDA, telling them it is likely they do need all of that calcium. They have cited factors like lack of equivalent exercise or sunlight exposure to the populations that thrive on low calcium diets.

There is also a difference in how people mean to eat and how they actually do eat. Many vegans eat highly processed soy and wheat proteins ( faux meats ) and eat very few vegetables.

It seems tough to get in the neighbourhood of a gram of calcium a day or even slightly less even eating vegetables like collard greens, kale, broccoli and other cooked cruciferous greens regularly. The only salad green with significant amount of calcium, that is absorbable that I found is watercress.

Yes, I know that some salad greens look impressive as calcium sources when measured by calorie, but those foods are low calorie and high bulk.

Not everyone likes eating massive salads at the majority of their meals and those massive salads would need to get more ginormous to keep up with the US RDA.

What are your thoughts on calcium intakes and sources?

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