Archive for the ‘Nutrition’ Category

Calcium in Foods 2014

November 6, 2014 @ 11:47 pm
posted by Dr Ginther

We can get ALL of our Calcium from foods.  We need 1200-1500 mg daily, especially if we have not been getting that much for years.  Most of us have not been getting enough Calcium – or our Vitamin D levels have been too low to absorb all we cansume.

Your body can absorb only 500-600 mg of Calcium at each meal.  Therefore you must spread out your calcium over 3 meals a day.  Do NOT exceed 2,000 mg Calcium daily.  Too much Calcium can be bad for kidneys or heart.

Chart of common foods high in Calcium in mg (adapted from the USDA website):

Calcium Can Be Confusing

November 2, 2014 @ 4:41 pm
posted by Dr Ginther

Getting the right amount of Calcium every day can be confusing.  The total of 1200 mg (1500 mg to correct long term deficiency) daily sounds easy.  You can only absorb 500 mg (maybe 600 mg) in a single meal.  Therefore, split your Calcium into 3 doses.

Calcium is best when it is in food.  Calcium Supplements with meals are good too.  Many of us need “Calcium CITRATE” rather than plain “Calcium” for easier absorption and fewer side effects.

Try to get a total of 400-500 mg Calcium in each meal.  Count Calcium in Foods and Calcium in Supplements.  If you have the same foods every day, it is easy to set up your supplements.  But the same diet every day is boring!  I like variety.  

Brie for Breakfast

October 24, 2014 @ 7:50 pm
posted by Dr Ginther

Welcome to the European Breakfast Buffet.  Calcium rich foods are featured in cheeses and yogurts.  At least 3 choices of cheeses on a rotation from day to day.  Yogurt comes plain, with dollops of fruit compote, and prepackaged Yoplait and competitors.  Milk is skim, whole, almond, walnut.

Cheeses are featured again at the luncheon buffet.  Capri salad of sliced Mozzarella, tomato, and garnish is a popular alternative to other salads with Feta or Goat Cheese.  Further north Gouda, Emmentaller, Cheddar, Jarlesberg step forward.

After dinner, after dessert, the cheese plate, often with port or a dry red wine, finishes the meal.  Many Europeans consume 1000, 1200 or even 1500 mg calcium daily in foods.  This they have done for centuries.

Smoked Salmon is a constant at breakfast.  The best source of Vitamin D3 other than Cod Liver Oil.  Cod is the dominant fish in the Portuguese diet, along with Sardines, eaten whole, often bones and all, high in Calcium and D3.

Cured meats, sausages, and eggs are good sources of protein at every breakfast buffet.  Hearty whole grain breads are available, but are losing ground to chocolate filled puff pastries.

Traditional diets have persisted because they work.  They fulfill the nutritional needs of the peoples who have eaten them for generations.

Make sure your diet meets your nutritional needs for good bone health.  Calcium, Vitamin D3, Protein, and Vitamins & Minerals.  Take Control Naturally with proper nutrition.

Jay Ginther, MD

Goodbye to “Totally Natural” Vitamin D

September 14, 2014 @ 8:18 pm
posted by Dr Ginther

I was out at high noon (about 1:12 CDT) today, and may have made some Vitamin D in my exposed skin.  We had beautifully clear skies with cool, dry air and lots of sunshine.  I did not use sun-block for the few minutes of skin cancer risk.  Unfortunately, it was also only a few minutes of Vitamin D opportunity. 

Ultraviolet light is attenuated and eventually blocked by the atmosphere.  The lower the sun is on the horizon, the less UV light gets through.  In Waterloo, IA we are entering the 7 months of the year when the sun is too low on the horizon.  We do not get enough UV to produce any Vitamin D.

Less than half of Iowans, who do not take substantial Vitamin D3 supplements, have sufficient Vitamin D levels in September.  By early April, that is less than 15%.