A guide to sources of calcium and tips to reduce the risk of osteoporosis from Singapore General Hospital (SGH).
Osteoporosis is a condition caused by brittle bones that fracture or break easily. Broken bones take time to heal, depending on your age; and the possibility of further fractures is very real. Women are more prone to osteoporosis because their bone mass is smaller to start with and decreases after menopause
Get enough calcium and vitamin D
Aim to get enough calcium daily. Vitamin D (sunlight is a natural source) is important too, as it helps the body to absorb calcium better. People at different ages require different amounts of calcium, so talk to a pharmacist or your doctor about supplements.
The best sources of calcium are found in these foods
Standard Serving Size||
Calcium Per Portion (Mg)|
| Yogurt|| 1 tub (200g)|| 340|
| Milk (in general)|| 1 cup (250ml)|| 290-325|
| Milk Powder (non-fat)|| 3 dsp (21g)|| 250|
| Kai Lan (cooked)|| 1 cup (100g)|| 230|
| Cheddar Cheese|| 1g slice (18g)|| 210|
| Tau Kwa (soya bean curd)|| 1 large (90g)|| 200|
| Sardines (with bones)|| 1 fish (75g)|| 175|
| Yellow Dhal|| 1/2 cup (100g)|| 170|
| Spinach (cooked)|| 1 cup (100g)|| 100|
| Ikan Bilis without Head (dried)|| 2 tbs (15g)|| 80|
| Chye Sim (cooked)|| 1 cup (100g)|| 70|
| Ice Cream|| 1 scoop (50g)|| 65|
| Brocolli (cooked)|| 1 cup (100g)|| 40|
| Soya Bean Milk|| 1 cup (20ml)|| 25|
Do some weight-bearing and resistance exercises
- Do regular weight-bearing exercises, like brisk walking, jogging, dancing or tennis. These exercises cause your feet and legs to bear your entire weight, strengthening your muscles and bones. If you have not exercised before or if you suffer from any medical problems, it's important you see a doctor first.
- Do resistance exercises. Also known as strength training, these exercises use muscles to pull or push against resistance to build bone and muscle strength. Free weights, weight machines and elastic bands are often used for strength training.
- Avoid smoking and limit your alcohol intake as these affect the body's ability to absorb calcium.