COMMON CALCIUM QUESTIONS
Is calcium best absorbed when taken with other minerals?
The answer isn’t clear. Although one study of postmenopausal women found that trace minerals ( 5 mg copper, 2.5 mg manganese, and 15 mg zinc) with calcium citrate malate improved bone density more than the calcium alone, it’s also known that large amounts of calcium or magnesium compete for absorption with each other and with other minerals. Smaller amounts of minerals, such as those found in multivitamins, aren’t problematic.
How should calcium be taken?
For best absorption, and to prevent calcification of your arteries, take no more than 500 mg at one time from food and supplements combined. Calcium citrate can be taken with or without food, but other forms should be taken with a meal, as they need stomach acid to be broken down.
Which form is best?
Calcium citrate and calcium citrate malate are regarded as the most absorbable. Calcium carbonate, the least expensive form, is also the least absorbable and most likely to cause gas, bloating, and constipation in high doses. Other forms vary in absorption, and may be bulkier, requiring more pills for a higher dose.