To remain active and healthy, your body needs calcium. Without it you would lose bone mass and weaken, increasing your chances of injury while making it harder for you to maintain the strength needed to exercise. Drinking milk is a great way to get the calcium you need on a daily basis. Drinking milk helps to protect teeth, protect against heart disease, and allow muscle contractions.
Many people have dairy for breakfast, if they eat breakfast. The bad news is that many Americans skip breakfast on a weekly basis at least once, and out of the ones that faithfully get up and eat a healthy meal in the morning, a certain percentage of them either eat the wrong types of foods, or forget to get the other 2/3 of their recommended daily intake of calcium for good bone and muscle health by carrying on the habit during other meals. Dietary guidelines recommend at least 3 servings of calcium rich products each and every day, with dairy products and green leafy vegetables the best sources of natural calcium.
What is at stake?
Osteoporosis affects 1 out of every pair of people on the planet after the age of 50. Lack of calcium in the diet and lack of physical activity can increase your chances of osteoporosis later on in life, but that does not mean that you have time to waste. Bone development in young adults is usually completed by the age of 25, and up to this point, calcium is important to the development of bone tissue and the strengthening of it. after this point calcium is needed to replenish calcium leaving the body and to decrease the amount of bone mass lost as we get older. The first half of life is important to build out defenses, and the second half to preserve them.
Falls become more of a concern for older adults. This is quite reasonable when you consider that a large percentage of older adults who have a fall that results in a broken hip do not live longer than a year after the fact. Getting enough calcium now and in the future can help hedge your chances of not becoming a statistic, and enjoying the ability to remain active and in tip top shape for many years to come.
If a person is lactose intolerant, other foods other than dairy products that are rich in calcium as well. If needed, there are lactose free calcium supplements that can be taken to make up in deficiency.