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Calcium is a major mineral present mainly in the bones and teeth. Hence, it is largely responsible for the maintenance of strong bones, teeth and healthy gums. In females, athletes and menopausal women have greater calcium requirements due to their reduced estrogen levels.

Calcium Rich Foods

Calcium rich foods include dairy products, milk, seafood like salmon and sardines, and green leafy vegetables. Other calcium food sources are almonds, broccoli, kale, mustard greens, sesame seeds, soybeans, tofu, whey and yoghurt. Calcium containing herbs are alfalfa, burdock, cayenne, eyebright, fenugreek, parsley, peppermint, and rose hip. Other sources of this mineral are calcium supplements like calcium citrate. Then, to promote calcium absorption, lysine rich foods or lysine supplements may be beneficial.

Inadequate calcium intake can lead to calcium deficiency, resulting in a number of health problems such as joint pain, brittle nails, increased cholesterol levels in the blood, high blood pressure, arthritis, rickets, muscle cramps and tooth decay.

Calcium Benefits

In addition to keeping bones, teeth and gums health, calcium is also

needed for maintaining a normal, regular heartbeat as it functions in the transmission of nerve impulses. Plus, this mineral reduces cholesterol levels in order to prevent muscle spasms and cardiovascular diseases in the long run. It is needed to activate a number of enzymes like lipase for fat metabolism.

Moreover, calcium promotes healthy bone growth and bone density. It has a protective effect over bones and teeth as it inhibits harmful lead absorption. In effect, this mineral combats bone loss linked to osteoporosis. Calcium, magnesium, as well as vitamin D work hand in hand to maintain optimum bone health.

Calcium may also aid in blood clotting and cancer prevention. It helps maintain permeability of cell membranes, keep skin healthy, stimulate muscle activity and prevent preeclampsia in pregnant women.

Calcium Side Effects

Excessive intake of calcium can block zinc absorption and vice versa. Similarly, calcium has an antagonistic effect on iron.

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