Calcium is a very important mineral for the human body because it helps in building and maintaining stronger bones. Calcium is also necessary for many other body functions, including the regulation of blood pressure, nerve transmission, muscle contraction, and blood clotting.
An average adult should consume around 1000 mg of calcium each day. The amount is higher for children and those who are aged above 50. However, most people do not consume an adequate amount of calcium regularly. You need to include foods that contain a high amount of calcium in your vegan diet to ensure a regular intake of the mineral.
Here is the list of some of the best vegan sources of calcium.
Soybeans are a great source of many healthy nutrients, including calcium. You will get around 18.5% of the daily requirement of calcium from just one cup of cooked soybeans. Soybeans are used to make different food products such as tofu, soy milk, natto, tempeh, etc., and these products also contain calcium. However, most people eat soybeans because it contains a high amount of protein.
A small amount of calcium is present in all types of nuts but the amount of calcium is higher in almonds. Around 97 mg of calcium is present in just ¼ cup of almonds. After almonds, Brazil nuts have the highest amount of calcium. Macadamia, hazelnuts, pistachios, walnuts, etc are some of the nuts that have a good amount of calcium. Nuts are also rich in several antioxidants, vitamins, and certain minerals. In addition to that, eating nuts will help to lower blood pressure and lose weight.
Typically, grains are not thought of as a great source of calcium but there are some grains with a significant amount of calcium. Grains such as teff and amaranth are good sources of the mineral. One cup each of cooked teff and amaranth can provide about 12% of the daily requirement of calcium. Both these grains are also rich in fiber and will be a great addition to your vegan meal plan.
Certain cruciferous vegetables and some leafy greens are abundant in calcium. Half a cup of cooked spinach can easily provide around 84-142 mg of calcium. Some of the calcium-rich vegetables are cabbage, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, kale, and okra. Apart from calcium, these vegetables are also good sources of several other healthy minerals, vitamins, fiber, etc. it is recommended to boil the vegetables to reduce the oxalate content because this antinutrient makes it very difficult for your body to absorb calcium.