Peanuts and peanut butter are good dietary sources of calcium. A small serving provides up to 3% of the recommended daily intake. But, as calcium in peanuts is less bioavailable than milk and dairy, we should consume a wide variety of foods rich in calcium to meet our daily needs.
Are peanuts high in calcium?
Actually, peanuts are great dietary sources of calcium. The calcium content of peanuts depends on the variety, though:
- Virginia peanuts have 89 mg of calcium per 100g, or 9% of the Daily Value (DV)
- Valencia peanuts have 62 mg of calcium per 100g, or 6% of the DV
- Spanish peanuts have 106 mg of calcium per 100g, or almost 11% of the DV.
A cup of peanuts has up to 155 mg of calcium. Furthermore, just a handful of peanuts provides up to 30 mg of calcium, or 3% of the DV.
What’s the calcium content of peanut butter?
Peanut butter has a decent calcium content as well. It has 40-50 mg of calcium per 100g. A tbsp of peanut butter provides up to 8 mg of calcium. This amount is 0.8% of the DV.
How much calcium is in other peanut-based foods?
Peanut flour is another peanut product with a great calcium content. It has 130 mg of calcium per 100g. 1 oz of peanut flour has 37 mg of calcium, whereas a cup has 78 mg.
On the contrary, cookies, crackers, and other sweets filled with peanut butter contain negligible amounts of calcium. They may contain even less than 12 mg of calcium per 100g. Peanut oil has negligible amounts of calcium as well.
Do peanuts have more calcium than other common nuts?
Most seeds and nuts can help us meet our daily calcium needs. Peanuts have a relatively medium calcium content as compared to other favorite nuts. Almonds are the richest nuts in calcium.
per 1 oz
Is calcium in peanuts bioavailable?
The most bioavailable sources of calcium are cow’s milk, dairy products, and fortified foods. We absorb about 30% of calcium of these sources.
Plant-based foods have lower absorption rates than cow’s milk and dairy, though. They contain certain compounds, which inhibit calcium absorption. For instance, peanuts, as well as other nuts, are high in phytic acid, which prevents calcium from being absorbed.
Phytic acid binds to minerals and makes them unavailable due to its chelating property. Phytic acid inhibits absorption of calcium as well as other minerals, like iron, zinc magnesium and manganese.
What foods inhibit calcium absorption?
You should avoid consuming foods rich in calcium or taking calcium supplements with foods high in oxalates. Foods high in oxalates have the worst absorption rate of calcium. For instance, we only absorb 5% of calcium from spinach, collard greens, sweet potatoes, rhubarb, and beans.
The high levels of oxalic acid in these foods form indigestible salts with calcium, decreasing its absorption.
How to increase the absorption of calcium?
High vitamin D levels enhance the absorption of calcium. But, there aren’t many common foods high in vitamin D. Thus, 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.
Moreover, soaking and germination of seeds and nuts improves the absorption rates of calcium as well as other minerals.
Actually, healthy people who follow a well-balanced diet probably get more than enough calcium from food.
How many peanuts should I eat to get enough calcium?
Certainly, peanuts have a great nutritional value and many health benefits. Actually, peanuts and peanut butter could help us lose weight. Peanuts promote satiety, as they have a high protein and fiber content. Furthermore, they contain vitamins and minerals which are involved in energy metabolism!
But, as peanuts are particularly high in calories, we should consume reasonable amounts. Otherwise, they can make us gain weight.
As a rule of thumb, we should eat a handful of peanuts, or a tbsp of peanut butter a day.
Common foods high in calcium
Cow’s milk and dairy are the main dietary sources of calcium for people who follow the standard Western diet. Fish and eggs are other animal-derived foods with decent amounts of calcium.
We can get high amounts of calcium from plant-based sources as well. Beans, seeds, nuts, whole grains, fruits (e.g. raisins), and certain vegetables, such as kale, spinach, cabbage, and broccoli can help us meet our daily needs.
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. Calcium absorption declines with age.
Children older than 13 years and teenagers require at least 1,300 mg of calcium a day, due to rapid bone growth.
Health benefits of calcium
Calcium is the most abundant mineral in the body! It’s necessary for strong bones and teeth.
Furthermore, calcium is involved in muscle movement and flexibility, blood vessel contraction and dilation, blood clotting, nerve transmission, and hormonal secretion. In addition, getting enough calcium may lower the risk of developing cardiovascular disease, hypertension, stroke, atherosclerosis, osteoporosis, and certain cancers.