Fun Facts about Calcium

Calcium is a member of Group II A of the periodic table and is classified as an alkaline earth metal. According to numerous sources, calcium is the fifth most abundant element available on earth and is abundant in the Earth’s crust. Calcium metal was not discovered in its pure form until Humphry Davy used a form of electrolysis to pass an electrical current through melted calcium chloride in 1808.

Metallic calcium is rarely used. However, some forms of calcium include chalk, limestone, gypsum, marble and plaster. Calcium is most known for its uses in the improvement of deficiencies in the body.

1. Fact: Calcium Absorption is Aided by Vitamin D
Calcium absorption often requires Vitamin D. Vitamin D converts to a hormone that triggers the production of intestinal proteins that are responsible for calcium absorption.

2. Fact: Calcium is Necessary for Building Healthy Bones 
Calcium is known for building strong skeletal systems and helping to prevent osteoporosis in women that are at risk for the bone degenerating disease. Calcium also moderates muscle action and is essential in animal and plant nutrition.

3. Fact: Ingesting Too Much Calcium Could Lead to Kidney Failure 
Consuming too much calcium could lead to fatal renal failure. This may occur from consuming too many daily dietary calcium antacids or consuming too much of other calcium sources. Symptoms of milk-alkali syndrome have occurred with ingesting as little as 2.5 g of calcium carbonate daily.

4. Fact: Calcium Aids in Proper Digestion of Food 
Calcium carbonate tablets can aid in proper digestion of food if taken in moderation. They aid in digestion by reducing the acidity levels and allowing proper absorption of nutrients from the food. Calcium also aids in weight loss, as well as, prevents obesity, high blood pressure and high cholesterol.

5. Fact: Calcium Plays a Role in Depression Prevention
As women age, their risks of developing osteoporosis, hypertension, cardiovascular disease and depression increase. Pregnant women are often advised to increase their calcium intake to prevent post-partum depression after their pregnancy and to avoid a deficiency from the baby sharing the mother’s resources. Some studies also show that a calcium deficiency may be linked to prolonged depression or pre-menstrual syndrome.

6. Fact: Calcium Aids in Blood Clotting
Calcium and Vitamin K are essential in the blood clotting process. People that have a calcium deficiency have a more difficult time with blood clotting. These people tend to lose a significant amount of blood compared to those that do not. To lead a healthy lifestyle, calcium supplements and calcium rich foods are necessary to avoid problems.

7. Fact: Lack of Exercise Robs the Bones of Calcium
Individuals who live sedentary lifestyles and rarely walk or weight lift are at risk for calcium depletion from the bones. Exercise is essential for the development of healthy bone development and calcium absorption.

8. Fact: Excessive Smoking or Drinking Robs the Bones of Calcium
Bone loss is accelerated by excessive smoking or drinking. Drinking alcohol on a regular basis can deplete bone mass in men and women. People that drink on a regular basis are also more likely to have poor nutrition habits, which could lead to increased bone fractures.

9. Fact: Some Prescription Medications Rob the Bones of Calcium
Drugs such are corticosteroids, diurectics, anticonvulsants, non-steroidal antiflammatory drugs, immune-suppressive medications, some antibiotics or asthma medications with steroids may interfere with calcium absorption.

10. Fact: High Sodium Intake May Rob the Body of Calcium
High sodium diets depletes the calcium in the body faster than moderate to low salt intake diets. Other minerals are also loss through the kidneys into the urine. Nearly 30 to 40 mg of calcium is not absorbed each time sodium is increased by two extra grams.