One thing that almost all organs and tissues in the body need and us is calcium. Unfortunately, if you are not really into dairy products or actively avoid them, you need to think again. This may cause a calcium deficiency, which can become a serious condition. It is necessary to have proper knowledge about its effects and treatments. If you want to know all about these things, then give this article a read! Rest assured, you’ll get a lot of new information about this condition.
Calcium is actually a mineral that is present in various foods. Our body needs this essential mineral to be able to maintain stronger bones and carry out several important functions. Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body, and almost all that we consume is in the bones and in teeth because the mineral helps support their structure and hardness.
Moreover, the body needs calcium for the muscles to move and for the nerves to carry various messages between the brain and other parts of the body. Calcium is also used to help blood vessels move blood throughout the body and to help release hormones and enzymes, which affect almost all of the functions of the human body.
Calcium: Why is it Important?
Calcium is the top mineral present in the bones, playing an important role in making them stronger, and is a primary constituent in the structure of the skeletal system and is also widely distributed in soft tissue. Calcium is also involved in metabolic, hormonal, enzymatic and neuromuscular activities.
Daily ingestion and the right absorption of this essential mineral is important to maintain optimal health. Calcium absorption actually depends on the calcium needs of the body, as well as the amount of food we eat and the food itself. You may be able to get enough if you eat foods rich in calcium like milk and other dairy products. You may also consume green leafy vegetables, nuts, seafood, dried beans, bread, cereals and orange juice. All of these contain calcium, which is important for the maintenance, formation and growth of bones.
What is Calcium Deficiency?
Calcium deficiency is a condition that actually results from an insufficient amount of calcium in the body. This may occur when the consumption levels of the mineral are inadequate for a very long period of time. Moreover, having a deficiency in magnesium, phosphorus, and vitamin D may also result in calcium deficiency.
There are two types of calcium deficiencies:
- Hypocalcemia: this type of calcium deficiency is often characterized by a low level of calcium in the blood. This often happens as an after effect of some medications like diuretics, hyparathyroidism and many other conditions.
- Dietary calcium deficiency: this condition is mainly cause by an inadequate intake of calcium. This often leads to the depletion of calcium stores in the bones, bone weakening, bone thinning and even osteoporosis.
Causes of Calcium Deficiency
The causes of the calcium deficiency depend on the type of calcium deficiency you have.
Dietary calcium deficiency causes:
- Mal-absorption of calcium in the diet.
- Vitamin D, magnesium and phosphorus deficiencies
- Insufficient calcium consumption
- Kidney failure
- Medical conditions
Symptoms of Calcium Deficiency
Below are the most common symptoms of calcium deficiency:
- Constant fractures
- Bone breakage
- Tooth decay
- PMS and late puberty symptoms
- Brittle nails
- Dry skin
- Muscle cramps
Calcium Deficiency Diseases
When calcium deficiency is left untreated, it may cause more complications in the body. Below are some of the possible diseases you may acquire if you do not address the condition quickly:
- Various type of cancer
- High blood pressure
- Cardiovascular or heart conditions
Treatments for Calcium Deficiency
You can opt for any treatments for calcium deficiency. Here are some of the best:
Injection. This is generally a last resort method, used when the other treatments cannot solve the problem.
Calcium supplement. if you are not able to get enough calcium from the food you eat, you can opt for supplements. This is widely available in many forms: tablet, liquid or a chewable supplement.
Dietary changes: in the initial stages of the condition, you must change your normal diet plan. Make sure you eat foods that rich in calcium, because this will add strength to the parts of your body that need it.