If you have spent any time scrolling through my blog posts, the recent news about the need to get calcium from food and the benefit of the Mediterranean Diet came as no surprise to you.
I will point out just a couple of things that you might not have caught from the media reports.
With regard to calcium and vitamin D supplementation, there is not evidence that calcium or vitamin D in pill form assists in maintaining strong bones. High doses of vitamin D may be helpful, but that has not yet been established. The bottom line from the recent research was a recommendation to consume foods high in calcium, like greens and low or no fat diary products, or almond milk. Since vitamin D is hard to find in foods, some exposure to sunlight is necessary. In fact, the advice to older adults was specifically get calcium from foods, spend some time in the sun AND exercise. Remember exercise strengthens bones. The advice on vitamin D supplements, as I said, is still being worked out. I take a vitamin D pill (1000 IU) during winter months.
I have long promoted the Mediterranean Diet and it is the foundation of my Volumetrics recipes (on You Tube and Scribd). To be VERY clear, it is not a diet, it is a pattern of eating that focuses on healthy oils, plant based foods, whole grains, legumes and fish. What is important in the newest study, the best one yet, is that the people consumed specifically extra virgin olive oil. They also received their healthy fats form nuts... another reason to switch to almond milk. The benefits in this study were around heart disease. The researchers are continuing to consider other benefits, like weight control. Here is one of several news stories about the latest findings.