Do you want to give your body a natural calcium boost? Try our calcium boost juice recipe for a natural bone and muscle health tonic. This is one of our newest juice recipes. We serve it at breakfast time – the avocado makes it super creamy and filling – but you can enjoy it at any time of the day.
Why does our body need calcium?
Calcium is an important part of bones and teeth and its one of the most abundant minerals in the body. As well as being necessary to build and maintain bone health, calcium also helps with healthy blood clotting, and helps our muscles to work, including our heart, so it´s important to include sources of calcium in our diet.
When I was growing up I was told to drink up my milk to give my body calcium. Between you and me I always disliked drinking milk and at school would give my milk away to anyone that wanted it. When I came across plant-based foods it was a relief to learn that I could still get plenty of calcium from eating plants, and not just dairy. In fact, some research has indicated that the body absorbs plant-based calcium more easily than that found in dairy.
What are the plant-based sources of calcium?
Kale is one of the top plant-based sources of calcium – most leafy green vegetables are great. (Spinach is high in calcium however is also high in oxalates, which inhibits the uptake of calcium, so you need to include other green leafy veggies, not just spinach!). Fennel is also a good source of calcium, so too are tofu, beans, cabbage (the green leafy variety), nuts (especially almonds) and seeds (like chia or poppy seeds).
In the UK the NHS recommend 700mg of calcium per day for the average adult (note, the amount varies by age and gender). You can get this by eating a varied diet: for example, half a cup of broccoli contains 100mg, 2 tablespoons of almond butter contain 75mg and ½ cup of chickpeas contain 50mg. Eating a varied diet is the best way to achieve your requirements.
To maximise nutrient uptake i.e. to ensure your body can absorb the calcium, you also need to have vitamin D and vitamin K. The natural source of vitamin D is sunlight, so expose your skin and eye balls to sunlight (early morning or late evening is best when the sun is less likely to burn your skin, and remember, do not look directly at the sun). It is also present in some fortified foods. Vitamin K is found mainly in green leafy vegetables.
One word of caution –consuming large amounts of sodium can increase the rate you excrete calcium. There´s another good reason for reducing salt! Read our earlier article on salt here. Also, too much calcium can cause diarrhoea, so if you decide to take vitamin supplements, check the dose.
Calcium boost juice recipe
Handful kale or spinach
1/3 fennel bulb
Tip! If you want to supercharge this juice, then add a chunk of broccoli stem too.
Wash all your ingredients beneath cold running water, making sure the kale (or spinach) leaves in particular are clean. Cut your apple in half and sandwich the spinach or kale in between the two halves. Push it through your juicer, along with the fennel, courgette and lemon. Pour the juice into your blender, add the avocado and blend for 30 seconds. Remember to wash your juicer and blender before drinking your juice (this makes it easier to clean). You can also use a hand blender, instead of a large blender (saves on washing up).
Low fruit or no fruit calcium boost juice option
If you prefer a pure vegetable juice, or want to reduce the amount of fruit sugars in this juice its really easy:
Vegetable only (no fruit):
Simply replace the apple with an extra courgette, or a cucumber.
More information and juice recipes
There are lots of juice recipes available on our blog – click on “juice recipe” in the category box. You can enjoy juicing for three days, one meal or your whole stay. Read more about our detox and weightloss retreats here.