Fuel Your Runner’s Bones with Calcium-Rich Plant-Based Snacks

0-158213611-fotolia-63359845-subscription-monthly-m

Probably the second-most common question vegan athletes are asked by their non-vegan counterparts is, “How do you get enough calcium?” The daily recommended calcium intake for most adults is well established at 1,000 mg, with increased amounts for pregnant women and the elderly.

While the dairy industry has historically led consumers to believe that the best — and perhaps only — way to get enough calcium for strong bones is to consume dairy products, recent research has debunked that myth.

In fact, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine has found that consumption of animal products can actually take away from the body’s calcium supply: “Protein from animal products is much more likely to cause calcium loss than protein from plant foods. This may be one reason that vegetarians tend to have stronger bones than meat-eaters” (just more fodder for your omnivore inquisitors).

Achieving the daily calcium requirement for a runner’s body is entirely possible to do on a plant-based diet and without taking supplements, which have been linked to cardiovascular disease.

While regular exercise, such as running and strength-training, is cited as one of the best ways to enhance bone health, runners who do not get enough calcium are at particular risk for weakened bones because, as physician and dietician Shawn Dolan explains to Runner’s World, “When the body is low on calcium, it borrows from the skeleton.”

A prolonged period of calcium insufficiency increases the risk of stress fractures in runners, according to dietitian Jackie Dikos. For many runners, stress fractures are one of the most feared running injuries, as they can keep an athlete out of training for weeks, sometimes months. Let’s definitely try to avoid this!

There’s one more element to consider with regard to calcium intake: this particular mineral requires vitamin D for maximum absorption. The recommended daily amount of vitamin D intake for men and women up to age 70 is 600 IU, with up to 2,000 IU recommended in the winter. Because vitamin D is not available in most foods, the most natural way to take in the vitamin is from the sun.

Researchers have suggested that ”approximately 5–30 minutes of sun exposure between 10 AM and 3 PM at least twice a week to the face, arms, legs, or back without sunscreen usually lead to sufficient vitamin D synthesis.” 

The variance of time exposed to the sun depends on your skin’s natural pigment: the fairer your skin, the less time in the sun; the darker your skin, the more time in the sun you should spend, within this range. Many runners get at least this much exposure in the warmer seasons, but if you have a history of skin cancer or pre-cancer or live in a region where this sunny days are few and far between, taking vitamin D in supplement form at the recommended amount is considered a safe way to help your body absord the calcium it needs. 

Now that we’ve established the importance for consuming sufficient calcium and vitamin D in runners, here are some of the most calcium-rich plant-based foods from which to derive your daily need: soy, leafy greens, nuts and seeds, beans, oatmeal, molasses and certain fruits. As this extensive list implies, there’s no shortage of calcium in a well-rounded vegan diet. Let’s look at some of the quickest and most delicious ways to consume these foods throughout the day and before and after training:

1. Power-Pack Your Smoothie

Many runners start their morning with a smoothie. You can make a pretty amazing, calcium-rich smoothie simply by including these smoothie-friendly ingredients: leafy greens, nut milk, hemp or chia seeds, and whatever delicious fruits you desire (extra points for calcium-packed blackberries, black currants, oranges, and figs)! How does a Sweet Cherrie Almond Smoothie sound, with calcium-rich almond milk and orange? Or how about a Spring Tune Up Smoothie, with collard greens and hemp and chia seeds? The possibilities are endless!

2. Pre-Make Energy Bars

In one single recipe, you have the calcium-dense ingredients of oats, almonds, cashews, flax seeds, northern beans and molasses! This is an energy bar made for just runners. Baking not your thing? Try the No Bake Superfood Energy Bars, which contain walnuts, almonds, hemp and seeds, and you can even cut the maple syrup with molasses for extra calcium (and iron!). Yum!

3. Drink Your “Milk”

Chocolate milk is a popular recovery drink among runners, but you can make your own plant-based version by swapping out dairy milk for one of your favorite nut or seed milks (I like almond milk or hemp milk), raw cacao powder and a bit of agave to taste. Want to make it all from scratch? Try this recipe for Raw Cacao Milk. For something a bit more decadent, try this Healthy Vegan Chocolate Smoothie/Milkshake, making sure to replace the banana with silken tofu for added calcium.

4. Change Up Your Hummus

If you’re like me, hummus is a go-to food for satiating hunger pangs and providing energy and protein for training. While the traditional garbanzo-bean recipe is great (and typically includes calcium-rich tahini), you can up your calcium intake by using northern white beans, navy beans or edamame instead of or in addition to the standard chickpeas. This Oil-free Kale-Edamame Hummusrecipe utilizes both calcium-laden edamame (soy) and kale! Or perhaps this Smoky White Bean and Roasted Yellow Pepper Hummus whets your appetite. Whichever recipe you settle on, use some broccoli florets as dippers to add even more calcium. It’s almost too easy.

5. Pack Some Trail Mix

Preparing your own snack packs will ensure that you have healthy vegan food at hand when hunger strikes. To help meet your daily calcium needs, make sure to include foods such as nuts, seeds, oats, currants and figs. Here’s a basic method for making your own Amazing Superfood Trail Mix.

If all that sounds like too much work, maybe these simple Baked Kale Chips will better fit into your hectic schedule. You have tons of options for including calcium into your daily diet, and now you have no good excuse not to. Remember that healthy bones will keep you running stronger, longer!

By: Lee Davidson
Source: www.onegreenplanet.org

 

2015-08-27T12:04:26+00:00

Related Questions

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: I usually take a few supplements a day.... vitamin E, flax, vitamin c, and calcium/magnesium. I am wondering if they are still necessary to take while on a raw food diet and the anti viral cleanse?

    A:

    NO, you don't need to take anything additionally while on the Anti-Viral kit and regimen.

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: Is it necessary or important to take the Vitamin D formula with the Calcium formula, since the Vitamin D absorbs and utilize the the calcium?

    A:

    Because it's herbal - not really! But it helps to take these 2 formulas together.

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: I am planning to use angioprim to fully unclog my arteries. I was courious about the calcium phosphate that you offer. Calcium carbonate builds up, and clogs the arteries. Is calcium phosphate going to help unclog them? Is cayenne pepper 135,000 shu, really beneficial for arteries as a cleansing agent? I'm really interested in this cayenne pepper, and planning on using it. Please give me your thoughts!

    A:

    Calcium Carbonate has no place in the human body, Calcium Phosphate is organic and thus helpful. The body is able digest it, and it will help keep the arteries clear, and clean. Cayenne pepper is one of the best things for the blood, veins, and arteries. This fruit will greatly help you in so many ways.

    Product Links:
    Calcium Formula

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: I purchased Children's Elixir, Moringa Seed, Iodine, and Calcium extracts for my 6 month old son. I dont take him out that often, I need a Vitamin D Extract, or Multivitamin Extract. Do you think I need anything else, other than the products I mentioned above?

    A:

    The best thing for the child is Khemetian Gold (which is liquid), Moringa Extract, and Iodine Phosphate Extract. These are all liquid! you can find them on our site under "Children's Extracts."

    Article:
    CHILDREN'S EXTRACTS

    Product Links:
    Khemetian Gold
    Moringa Seed Extract
    Iodine Extract

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: What should women over 40 take for bone health? I am having creaks and pops like throughout the day like never before and eat at least a 75% vegetarian diet……..!!! I finished a bottle of your calcium but wonder if I need to order something else to go along with the Calcium.

    A:

    Try our JOINT FORMULAand MSM SULFUR.

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: I am an African American, 70 years old, and in good health and physical condition. I jog/walk 1 1/2 miles 5 days a week, do pushups and sit ups daily. But, I have low bone density, on the following medication: once a month Itake 1 capsule of Ergocalciferl 50,000 mg; once a week I take 1 tablet of Alendronate 70mg (Fosamax) a week (same day), and daily one tablet of calcium 500 with Vitamin D, and a multi-vitamin tablet. My questions are: 1) is there a herbal product to replace each, Ergocalciferl, Alendronate, Vitamin D, and what do you recommend for a multi-vitamin purpose and something to boost my energy level? Thanks, I will wait to receive your response.

    A:

    I would recommend you take KHEMETIAN GOLD, ELECTRIC GREENS CELL FOOD, IRON PHOSPHATE FORMULA, and CALCIUM FORMULA to replace these products you listed that are harmful to you. All of the above will nourish you with the necessary nutrients your body requires.

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: I know blackstrap molasses is a good source of calcium, but is it the ionized one??

    A:

    NO!

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: Do you have a recommendation for cheap and good calcium?

    A:

    Try our CALCIUM FORMULA! It's on our site. You can do a SEARCH for things on our site. Spend some time navigating the site, Beloved! Peruse the on-line store (all herbal compounds).

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: I am required to eat at least 60 oz. of proteins on a daily basis, take 2 vitamins daily, 3 calcium tablets daily, 2 iron tablets daily, and dink at least 64 oz. of water daily. With your products, what do you recommend? I would also like to detox my body with the colon cleanse, do you recommend this and if so, which of your products do you recommend?

    A:

    Yes! Give the DHERBS 10-DAY SUPREME COLON CLEANSE a try!

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: I am trying to find an all-organic multi-vitamin to replace the vitamin I?m currently taking. Does your multi-vitamins and minerals include Vitamins A, all B's, D, E, K, folic acid, calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, and potassium? Should any of your other formulas be taking along with it?

    A:

    Our Multi-Vitamins and Minerals includes all the nutrients you named below. You may take this formula with other Dherbs formulas.

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: What can I do about calcium spots in my breast?

    A:

    Perform the FULL BODY DETOX followed by the TOTAL WOMAN CLEANSE.

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: I notice that my 5 year old son as a cavity, and also his teeth are of a grayish color. He does not eat a lot of sweets, and artificial foods. I try to eat food that is organic, lots of fruits and vegetables. My concern is that, he is not getting enough vitamins, protein, and calcium. Is there of particular diet that you would recommend for my child?

    A:

    To make sure your child is getting enough nutrients, give the child Dherbs.com Children's Nutritive Formula 9, Calcium Extract, and Moringa Seed Extract. (Read our article on Moringa in the articles section of our site).

    Article:
    Moringa

    Product Links:
    Children's Calcium Extract
    Children's Iodine Extract
    Moringa Seed Extract

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: I am 22 weeks pregnant and in the hospital on bed rest with Preeclampsia. Today I was told that the protein in my urine was up to 9 grams from 2.1 and my platelet count has dropped from 180 to 130. The doctors want to start discussing delivery, which for me would mean the lost of a 4th child. I have been on a regimen vitamin c, primrose oil, hawthorn berries, calcium, omega fish oil, magnesium and potassium and that seemed to work for about 4 weeks. Now things have just gone bad. Is there a hope for saving my child, as things have gotten crucial?

    A:

    2nd RESPONSE: The following products are toxic to you: Vitamin C Calcium Fish Oil Magnesium Potassium Toxic products can cause pre-eclampsia! Make sure you read our article â€ECLAMPSIAâ€. Start getting your products from Dherbs because we are all natural (herbal-based) and you can trust our integrity.

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: Members of my house have started drinking Hemp Milk and Rice Milk. No more Cow Milk! We like the taste of both. I also like the fact that the hemp milk has omega and other nutrients in it. However, my son is three years old and we have discovered he is allergic to nuts because a family member gave him a cashew to eat, then his eyes began to swell up like Garfield the cat. I had him tested for food allergies and the test revealed he is allergic to nuts and soy. So I don't give him any nut products or soy products. My question for you is: "Is hemp a nut or a seed, is the hemp milk derived from a nut or a seed???" I need to know other alternatives if in fact it is a nut. I do not want to give him something toxic to him.

    A:

    Hemp is a seed, not a nut, so hemp seed milk is okay for him.

    Nuts cashews - peanuts, soy

    Grains - rice, oats

    Fruit - almond, coconut, banana, date

    Hey, I'll do an article that will be up on Dherbs early next week!

    Peace and Love!

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: My wife and I are looking for a multi-vitamin. She indicated she wanted something with calcium in it. Also, is the multi-vitamin you have for both sexes?

    A:

    Dherbs sells MULTI-VITAMINS AND MINERALS FORMULA and CALCIUM FORMULA that are 100% natural and organic. Visit our On-Line store. Any body can take vitamins, Beloved, Gender doesn't matter!

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: Can you please tell me what about a 9 year old boy that was diagnosed with calcium deficiency? Also please tell me what a 53 year old woman should take who feels like she's pregnant after eating! Thanks very much for your time and any assistance that you can give!

    A:

    Calcium deficiency is corrected with calcium SUFFICIENCY so take plenty of CALCIUM FORMULA. For after eating problems, I recommend SEN FEN FORMULA, DIGEST AID, and AFTER-DINNER TEA!

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: I have to remove my entire thyroid gland in about two weeks I have done all kinds of reading what supplements do you recommend that won't take away the effects of my regular meds now that I will be taking them for life. I will also have to have a calcium supplement, multivitamin, and possibly iodine supplement?

    A:

    YOU ARE GOING TO LET DOCTORS REMOVE AN ORGAN GOD SPECIFICALLY GAVE YOU FOR A PARTICULAR FUNCTION ON YOUR BEHALF????? I HAVE NO PRODUCTS THAT WON'T INTERFERE WITH YOUR MEDICATION BECAUSE HERBS CLEANSE ALL POISONS AND YOUR MEDS ARE 100% MAN-MADE POISONS AND NOT RECOGNIZED BY GOD WHO MADE THE HERBS FOR THE HEALING OF THE NATIONS (REVELATIONS 22:2) AND FOR MEDICINE (EZEKIEL 47:12). YOU MIGHT WANT TO READ OUR ARTICLES â€THYROID GLAND†AND â€SURGERYâ€.

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: I'm preparing to make the hemp seed infant milk recipe. Would I need to add Moringa Seed and/or Iodine Phosphate to your recipies? Also, could I freeze this Hemp seed milk and use later?

    A:

    Yes, add Moringa and Iodine Phosphate to it (for nutritional purposes). And yes, you could freeze it the milk and use later, though fresh is always best.

    Product Links:
    Moringa Seed Extract
    Iodine Extract

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: I am 7 months pregnant with just a few symptoms (sciatica, low blood pressure, and change in appetite). So far, I have been doing pretty well. I take your pre-natal and calcium herbs. My fear is that I have no desire to eat vegetables. I only want fruit. Meat turns my stomach so I stay clear of it. I have just started gaining weight (3 pounds). What do you advise regarding the vegetables, low blood pressure, and sciatica?

    A:

    In place of vegetables try taking 6 capsules of our ELECTRIC GREENS CELL FOOD formula. For sciatica, try our NERVES FORMULA (also get massage and see a chiropractic). For low blood pressure, take CARDIO-VASCULAR FORMULA. For change in appetite, just go with the flow. Trust your body's natural inclination to change. You'll be fine. If you feel it's necessary, please schedule a consultation.

  • Click here to view in a new window

    Q: I gave birth a week ago and am at home recovering. I feel like this was the healthiest pregnancy up until I was hit by another car who ran a red light. I was 34 weeks at that time. In the emergency room I did not know until afterwards that they injected me with steroids to speed up the development of the baby's lungs. This caused crazy side effects and at 37 weeks I had to give birth. She is fine, a little jaundice, but overall she is doing better than my first two children. I believe it has much to do with the fact that I took your pregnancy and calcium supplements. Thank You. My question to you is what should I be taking now? I am breast feeding and want to make sure that we are both going to be fine with what I ingest. Also, ever since the accident I have craved sugar. I have not been able to stop snacking. I would also like to point out that my hair fell out with my last pregnancy. I would like to avoid that as well. Thank you for listening and advising.

    A:

    10-DAY ELECTRIC GREENS CELL FOOD CLEANSE! After the cleanse, take SUGAR BUSTER Formula every morning or before you eat anything sweet! Congrats on the new birth!