Runner's World (UK)
Calcium is also stockpiled in the bones for release into the bloodstream when levels fall
the mouse menu. When you eat a food containing calcium, it will be absorbed through the gut, aided by vitamin D. Then it enters the bloodstream before eventually being stored in the crystals of your bones (in fact, your skeleton stores 99 per cent of the mineral within your body). Here, it has a dual function, the first being to strengthen bone matter by increasing the number of osteoblasts you have and how effectively they work. ‘It’s hard to observe how this happens in vivo [in living human bone], but in vitro [tests carried out on materials in a lab], studies show calcium causes stem cells in bone to increase production of proteins that help form new bone. Additionally, these stem cells also turn into osteoblasts, increasing the number you have,’ explains Friedman.
Calcium is also stockpiled within the bones for release called hydroxyapatite. A tin of sardines, for instance, delivers 420mg calcium – well over half your required daily intake.
That said, downing milk with the enthusiasm you have for a free-poured G&T is not a skeleton-savvy approach. In fact, while one glass a day is associated with stronger bones, drinking three or more has actually been linked with an increased risk of bone fracture.
Why? Researchers are not sure. One theory is that the d-galactose – a type of sugar – found in higher quantities in milk than other dairy products, damages bones in larger doses by increasing your levels of inflammation and oxidative stress – an imbalance between harmful free radicals and antioxidants. It’s one of the reason nutritionists suggest varying your dairy sources throughout the day. •