Coaching Association of Canada

Calcium Counter

Recommended intakes for individuals for calcium in milligrams (mg)/day are:

Age Males Females
9–18 years 1,300 mg 1,300 mg
19–50 years 1,000 mg 1,000 mg

Here’s a handy tool to help you make food choices to help you increase your calcium intake. Foods marked with * are high in fat or sugar, which may not be desirable for all athletes. Percent ages refer to the % of the Daily Value (DV) for calcium. The DV for calcium is 1100 mg Ca/day.

50 mg calcium/serving or 5% DV 100 mg calcium/serving or 9% DV 150–200 mg calcium/serving or 14–18% DV 300 or more mg calcium/ serving or > 27% DV
VEGETABLES AND FRUIT 1 Serving = 125 mL (1⁄2 c) or equivalent as indicated. Fruits and juices are based on unsweetened varieties. Note: Calcium from some vegetables (such as spinach) is not readily absorbed.
1⁄2 cup kale (cooked); 1 cup broccoli or carrots; 1 orange. 1⁄2 cup bok choy or turnip greens (cooked). 6 dried figs; molasses (Black Strap)* 250 mL orange juice fortified with calcium.
GRAIN PRODUCTS 1 Serving = 1 slice bread or 125 mL (1⁄2 c) cooked cereal/pasta/rice or 30 g ready-to-eat cereal (check the label for the volume) or equivalent as indicated.
1⁄2 English muffin; 1 tea biscuit; 250 mL Kelloggs All Bran™ (60 g); 250 mL Kelloggs Bran Buds with Psyllium™ (60 g). Check the Nutrition Facts label for all enriched cereals for Calcium 5%. Whole wheat pancake made with milk (10 cm).    
MILK AND ALTERNATIVES 1 Serving = 250 mL (1 c) milk, 175 g (3⁄4 c) yogurt or 50 g (1 1⁄2 oz) cheese or equivalent as indicated.
50 mL sour cream* or coffee cream*; 50 mL cream cheese* (only 39 mg calcium). 175 mL (1⁄2 c) ice cream*; 250 mL cottage cheese; 50 g (1.5 oz) cheese*: ricotta, feta and brie; Frappuccino* (375 mL) 175 mL (3⁄4 c) yogurt (flavored); 175 mL (3⁄4 c) soy yogurt; 50 mL partly skim evaporated milk or condensed milk* Milk (skim, 1%, 2%, whole*, chocolate); fortified soy beverage; 175 mL (3⁄4 c) yogurt (plain or light); latte (375 mL); 50 g (1.5 oz) cheese*: cheddar, brick, edam, parmesan, romano, gouda, gruyere, Swiss, mozzarella.
MEAT AND ALTERNATIVES 1 Serving = 75 g (2.5 oz) cooked, lean meat, fish or poultry or 175 mL (3⁄4 c) cooked/canned legumes or e q u i valent as indicated.
Kidney beans, chickpeas, black beans, baked beans; 60 mL Brazil nuts*, filberts* or roasted soynuts*; 175 mL (3⁄4 c) hummus*; 125 mL pumpkin seeds* or sunflower seeds*, mixed nuts* or walnuts*; 75 g (2.5 oz) clams oroysters. Pinto or navy beans; 60 mL almonds; 30 mL almond butter* or sesame tahini*. Salmon (canned with bones); 4 Atlantic or 2 Pacific sardines (canned with bones). 150 g calcium-set tofu.
COMBINATION DISHES 1 Serving = 250 mL (1 c) or equivalent as indicated.
  Scalloped potato; 1 slice pizza*. 125 mL milk pudding; 125 mL tapioca pudding; cream soup made with milk (e.g. mushroom soup). Macaroni and cheese; fortified meal replacement or energy bars: check the label for calcium 27% or more.


Limit foods and beverages that are high in Calories, fat or sugar and have few other nutrients such as, baked goods, chocolate, candy, ice cream, fries, chips, pop,alcohol,sports and energy drinks, and sweetened ho tor cold drinks. You may choose some of these foods in moderation after you have enough servings from the food groups.

If you do not consume any dairy products and find it difficult to get enough calcium from foods alone, talk to your doctor or a registered dietitian about a calcium supplement. You can contact the dietitian at your Canadian Sport Centre or someone listed under the Sport Nutrition Registry on the CAC website. If there is no dietitian with expertise in sportlisted in your area, Dietitians of Canada may list a dietitian near where you live.

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