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|Emma McGowan NatureCity author & contributor|
Good news if you are looking to maintain a healthy weight: researchers in Exeter, UK, have released a study suggesting that calcium intake is associated with small reductions in weight.
The findings were published in the June 2011 issue of Nutrition Reviews.
The researchers examined seven relevant studies which showed that daily consumption of 1,000 mg of calcium was associated with a weight loss of 2 kg (approximately 4.40 lbs) per year. They state that this is especially relevant for mature women who are not morbidly obese but wish to maintain a healthy weight.
Researchers are still unclear exactly what component in calcium aids weight loss, but some studies have found that a diet that is rich in calcium may promote the oxidation of fat. This stimulates the breakdown of fat and inhibits the action of fat cells.
Calcium has also been shown to be beneficial for bone health, particularly in the prevention of osteoporosis. It is also plays a role in muscle contraction, central nervous system function and hormone secretion.
Since calcium absorption decreases and bone loss increases as you age, it is particularly important for anyone over 50 years of age to consume the recommended daily intake of 1200mg of calcium per day.
Calcium can easily be added into your diet with low-fat milk, yogurt, some vegetables (such as kale) or by taking a daily calcium supplement.
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