Growing Taller? Playing Sports? Are you getting enough Calcium and Vitamin D?
As an adolescent, you are going through one of your two biggest growth spurts of your life (the other being infancy). Your bones are growing longer and they are also becoming denser. Exercise helps this density, so we recommend daily exercise for all of our teens. Calcium and Vitamin D are also very important to the health of your bones as well.
Calcium can be found in milk, cheese, yogurt, broccoli, kale, spinach, soy beans, fortified orange juice, and other food products that have been enriched with it like breads and cereals. A teen needs 1300mg per day. This can be found in 4 cups of milk or orange juice. If you do not drink this much or eat the other foods listed on a regular basis, we strongly recommend a calcium supplement. This can be found in tablet form, gummy form, chew products and antacids like TUMS. Just check the quantity of calcium in them in when making your purchase.
Vitamin D has always been known to promote tooth and bone integrity, but more recently scientists have discovered its role in the health of your immune system, heart, and lungs. Due to the concerns for melanoma, most people wisely avoid direct sun exposure, which is the natural way to produce vitamin D in the body. This has led to more deficiencies and more illness. The amount you need is 600IU, which would take 6 cups of milk daily! Because this is difficult to attain, we recommend a vitamin D supplement. It can be taken alone or in combination with a calcium supplement. Most multi-vitamins have enough Vitamin D, so a regular vitamin can suffice.