Broccoli is one of the richest plant-based foods in calcium, as it contains 47 mg of calcium per 100g. A serving provides 7% of the required daily intake. Also, calcium in broccoli is highly bioavailable as compared to other vegetables!
How much calcium in broccoli?
Broccoli is a great plant-based source of calcium. Raw broccoli contains approximately 47 mg of calcium per 100g. That’s 5% of the Daily Value (DV). A medium stalk, which is a typical serving, has 71 mg of calcium, or 7% of the DV.
Furthermore, you can eat broccoli leaves in order to get calcium. In fact, broccoli leaves are edible. Broccoli leaves have a similar calcium content to broccoli florets. They contain 48 mg of calcium per 100g.
How to cook broccoli to preserve calcium?
Cooked broccoli has about 15% less calcium than raw broccoli. Boiled broccoli has about 40 mg of calcium per 100g.
In order to preserve most calcium in broccoli, you shouldn’t overcook it. Nutrients in broccoli, such as calcium and vitamin C, are vulnerable to heat.
In addition, high amounts of calcium leach into the water when we boil it. Prefer steaming broccoli. It preserves more calcium.
Other common foods high in calcium
There are many other plant-based sources rich in calcium. Kale (with 254 mg of calcium per 100g), arugula (160 mg), and beet greens (117 mg) are the richest plant-based foods in calcium. Regular consumption of cabbage and beans could boost calcium intake as well!
However, if you have a history of kidney stones, better avoid excess consumption of spinach. Although, spinach is particularly rich in calcium (100 mg per 100g), it’s one of the richest foods in oxalates. These compounds bind to calcium, creating calcium oxalate stones, known as kidney stones.
Calcium in broccoli is highly bioavailable, as broccoli is poor in oxalates.
How much calcium do we need a day?
The recommended daily intake of calcium is 1,000 mg for adults. Only women older than 50 years should get at least 1,200 mg of calcium a day, due to increased risk of osteoporosis.
Children older than 13 years and teenagers require at least 1,300 mg of calcium, due to bone growth.
We can get these doses from foods or supplements. But, we shouldn’t get too much calcium. High dosages may lead to side effects.
Health benefits of calcium
Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body! It’s vital for bone structure and strong teeth. Calcium deficiency may lead to osteoporosis.
In addition, calcium is involved in muscle movement and flexibility, blood vessel contraction and dilation, blood clotting, nerve transmission, and hormonal secretion. Most noteworthy, adequate amounts of calcium may lower the risk of developing cardiovascular disease, hypertension, stroke, atherosclerosis, and even certain cancers.
Keep in mind that we must have normal levels of vitamin D for optimal calcium absorption. As there aren’t many foods high in vitamin D, vitamin D deficiency is pretty common. In fact, many people would benefit from taking vitamin D supplements. You’ll find a wide variety on iHerb.
Nutritional value of broccoli
Broccoli has a superior nutritional value. Besides calcium, broccoli is packed with vitamins, minerals (e.g. iron), fiber, and health-promoting phytonutrients. For instance, broccoli is particularly rich in vitamin C. High vitamin C intakes may lower the risk of osteoporosis. Our bones need much more nutrients than calcium.