Calcium builds strong bones and teeth, activates enzymes that convert food to energy, promotes good nerve and muscle function, and helps the blood clot.
 
A child should have 500 milligrams of calcium per day when they are between 1 and 3 years of age. A child who is between 4 and 8 years of age should have 800 milligrams of calcium per day.
 
We all know that dairy products like milk, cheese, and yogurt are the best source of calcium, but there are other foods that are rich in calcium. Try to include these foods in your child’s diet:
 
Soy beverages that are calcium fortified
  • Spinach
  • Calcium fortified breads
  • Calcium fortified orange juice
  • Blackstrap molasses
  • Low fat plain yogurt
  • Canned ping salmon
  • Cereal that is calcium fortified
To ensure that your child is getting enough calcium, try these tips:
  • When making a recipe that has milk, use evaporated milk. It has twice as much calcium as regular milk.
  • Add nonfat milk powder to pancake batter, sauces and gravies, and even smoothies.
  • Use yogurt on fruit salad.
  • Use milk in place of water when mixing an instant cereal or hot chocolate.
Make sure that your child is also getting vitamin D, which helps the body absorb calcium.

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