Most healthy men don't need to take calcium supplements.
Calcium is important for men for optimal bone health, but in general it's best to get calcium from foods. Dairy products have calcium and so do dark green leafy vegetables and fortified foods.
Here's the daily Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) for healthy adult men. Note that the upper limit represents the safe boundary — it's not how much you should aim to get. Exceeding the upper limit increases your risk of health problems.
|Calcium: RDA for men
||RDA (milligrams each day)
||Upper limit (milligrams each day)
|71 and older
Sources: Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2012; Institute of Medicine, 2012
Don't forget vitamin D, which helps your body absorb calcium. Food sources of vitamin D include egg yolks and fatty fish, such as salmon and tuna. You can also get vitamin D through fortified foods and even from sun exposure. In addition, some calcium supplements include vitamin D.
Remember, these guidelines are for healthy adult men in general. Talk to your doctor if you are concerned about not getting enough calcium.
Sep. 18, 2012
- Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2010. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. http://www.cnpp.usda.gov/DGAs2010-PolicyDocument.htm. Accessed July 13, 2012.
- Dietary Reference Intakes for calcium and vitamin D. Institute of Medicine. http://www.iom.edu/vitamind. Accessed July 13, 2012.
- Calcium quick facts. Office of Dietary Supplements. http://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Calcium-QuickFacts. Accessed July 13, 2012.
- Vitamin D and calcium supplementation to prevent cancer and osteoporotic fractures: Draft recommendation statement. U.S. Preventive Services Task Force. http://www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org/draftrec3.htm. Accessed July 13, 2012.
- Zeratsky KA (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Aug. 23, 2012.