By David Blyweiss, M.D., Advanced Natural Wellness
November 8, 2017
- The bone nutrient that keeps your heart beating strong
- Sudden cardiac death linked to calcium deficiency
- Do your heart a favor with these natural sources of calcium
Calcium. You’ve heard it can strengthen your bones.
And as many physicians like my self know, most folks don’t become concerned about their calcium intake until osteoporosis, bone fractures or loss of physical function sets in. It simply isn’t a concern unless you’re the one dealing with these issues.
But what if calcium isn’t “just about the bones”?
What if it plays an important role in the electrical activity of the heart? And what if calcium deficiency could send you straight down the road to a sudden cardiac death?
That’s an entirely different story. And sadly enough, it’s a TRUE STORY!
Sudden Cardiac Death Linked to Calcium Deficiency
Sudden cardiac arrest (SCA) happens when your heart suddenly stops beating. This abrupt event occurs when electrical activity of the heart malfunctions and interferes with your normal heartbeat.
Now, you might think that people who experience this type of event already have heart disease. You might think it’s an almost “expected” event.
Well, neither of those concepts is true. About half of women and 70% of men who die from sudden cardiac arrest have no clinical history of heart disease. It’s an entirely unexpected event that can strike anyone, anywhere, at any time.
But there is one thing SCA victims have in common. Low levels of calcium.
In fact, people with the lowest blood calcium levels (less than 8.95 ml/dl) could have more than double the odds of SCA than people with the highest levels (9.55 ml/dl).
Does this mean you need to starting drinking more milk and eating more cheese?
Do Your Heart a Favor with these Natural Calcium Sources
If you’re like me, you grew up thinking that the best sources of calcium were dairy products. That’s another one of those misconceptions that may be doing more harm than good.
Commercial dairy products are full of drugs, hormones and antibiotics. Milk is an allergen that is processed until it’s void of nutrients (then it’s “fortified to put the nutrients back in.)
Foods made from cow’s milk are not meant to be consumed by humans. They irritate your stomach and contribute to irritable bowel syndrome. And they do nothing to protect your bones.
As a matter of fact, people who drink milk regularly are more likely to experience a hip fracture in their later years. Truth is, drinking one or two glasses daily is worse for your bone strength than if you drank less than a glass a week.
So where should you get your calcium?
Broccoli, kale, turnip greens and arugula all have high calcium content. So do canned sardines and salmon. This makes them an important part of your diet.
However, if you can’t get enough calcium from your food, you can take a supplement.
I recommend 1,000 mg of calcium citrate daily. Calcium citrate is much more absorbable than calcium carbonate so it’s easier for the body to utilize. But don’t take it all at once: The body can only absorb around 500 mg of calcium at a time.
Even if you’re bones are in good health, don’t forget about this critical nutrient. It may be exactly what your heart needs to keep pounding strong and steady through out the years.
Low serum calcium may increase risk of sudden cardiac arrest. Press Release. Elsevier. Oct 2017.
Yarmohammadi H, et al. Serum Calcium and Risk of Sudden Cardiac Arrest in the General Population. Mayo Clin Proc. 2017 Sep 19. pii: S0025-6196(17)30434-2.
Judaki A, et al. Evaluation of dairy allergy among ulcerative colitis patients. Bioinformation. 2014; 10(11): 693–696.
Feskanich D, et al. Milk consumption during teenage years and risk of hip fractures in older adults. JAMA Pediatr. 2014 Jan;168(1):54-60.