Martha Jefferson Monday: How Much Calcium Do you Need Each Day? - NBC29 WVIR Charlottesville, VA News, Sports and Weather

Martha Jefferson Monday: How Much Calcium Do you Need Each Day?

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It's important for everyone, regardless of age, to make sure they are getting a sufficient calcium intake each day. But as people get older, it often gets more difficult to get enough calcium and supplements become necessary.

"Calcium is an element that's essential for our bodies and the reason it's important at every age is for bones. There are other things calcium does for your body, but what we're really most concerned about is building bones and maintain strong bones," said Dr. Tiffani Dennis, a physician with Martha Jefferson Internal Medicine.

Specifically for older people, making sure you have enough calcium is an important part in protecting your bones.

"You should try to get most of your calcium from your diet, and if you're not getting enough then you can add in a supplement," noted Dr. Dennis.

Milk, yogurt and cheeses are the best foods to eat for calcium. If you do need to add in supplements, Dr. Dennis says it's important to know how much extra you need.

The guidelines are different for women and men. Generally, for men over at 19, 1,000 mg of elemental calcium per day is recommended. For women ages 19-50, 1000 mg a day is fine, but that amount increase to 1,200 mg a day for women over age 50.

In the end, the hope is that by having enough calcium intake, fractures, broken bones and other injuries can be prevented.

"The evidence we have supporting the use of calcium supplements is really for elderly individuals who are frail and are less likely to fracture if you are taking calcium," noted Dr. Dennis.

For more information on this topic, call Health Connection at (434) 654-7009.

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Submit your questions now! Just click this link and write your question in the email. Then tune in every Monday morning during NBC29 News at Sunrise for Martha Jefferson Monday brought to you by NBC29 and Martha Jefferson Hospital.

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