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Calcium sources in Chinese food


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#1 Publius

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Posted 10 July 2007 - 02:32 PM

When in China, I thought that most of our food didn't contain calcium, especially considering their lack of dairy products. And after reading about people grinding up "Dragon Bones" to obtain calcium, I thought, so where do the Chinese get their calcium from? Do they get it from soy (dofu)?

Does anyone know of any calcium rich Chinese foods or dishes?
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#2 shawn

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Posted 10 July 2007 - 10:22 PM

The green leafy vegetables that the farmers would grow and the fish such as sardines or tuna (I am not too sure what kind of fish they catch) that the fishermen would catch out at sea at that point of time (at that dynasty).
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#3 Kimchee

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Posted 12 July 2007 - 12:09 PM

Since there is vegetarianism in my family, this is a subject I'm well acquainted with... here's a list of non-dairy foods that are high in calcium, many of which are found in the typical Chinese diet (and then some):

Nondairy Foods with Calcium

Salmon
Tofu
Rhubarb
Sardines
Collard Greens
Spinach
Turnip Greens
Okra
Beans
Broccoli
Peas
Brussel Sprouts
Sesame Seeds
Bok Choy
Almonds


However, Asian women are known for getting osteoporosis in later years... perhaps the amounts of calcium, although found in many of the foods they eat, are still too low to keep bones strong. Perhaps, Publius, a quick little stir fry with bok choy and tofu would do the trick!

Kimchee

Edited by Kimchee, 12 July 2007 - 12:11 PM.

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#4 xng

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Posted 13 July 2007 - 11:40 AM

Since there is vegetarianism in my family, this is a subject I'm well acquainted with... here's a list of non-dairy foods that are high in calcium, many of which are found in the typical Chinese diet (and then some):

Nondairy Foods with Calcium

Salmon
Tofu
Rhubarb
Sardines
Collard Greens
Spinach
Turnip Greens
Okra
Beans
Broccoli
Peas
Brussel Sprouts
Sesame Seeds
Bok Choy
Almonds


However, Asian women are known for getting osteoporosis in later years... perhaps the amounts of calcium, although found in many of the foods they eat, are still too low to keep bones strong. Perhaps, Publius, a quick little stir fry with bok choy and tofu would do the trick!

Kimchee


Salmon and sardine are not considered vegetarian.


Milk/yogurt has the most calcium. Brocolli has sufficient calcium too.

Edited by xng, 10 April 2014 - 01:51 AM.


#5 urofpersia

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Posted 14 July 2007 - 11:58 PM

When in China, I thought that most of our food didn't contain calcium, especially considering their lack of dairy products. And after reading about people grinding up "Dragon Bones" to obtain calcium, I thought, so where do the Chinese get their calcium from? Do they get it from soy (dofu)?

Does anyone know of any calcium rich Chinese foods or dishes?


Calcium is found in vegetables. Some of them are very rich in Calcium such as broccoli. The idea that only adequate calcium can come from dairy products is a myth perpetuated by the *drum-roll* dairy industry.

Some studies claim to show some of the highest incidence of osteoporosis is linked to countries with the highest intake of dairy products. However I feel there might be other factors such the higher level of consumption of meat (and beer!!! hehe)

http://earthsave.org/news/whatdary.htm

You may just want to re-examine what you have been taught as a kid growing up in North America. :-D
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#6 urofpersia

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Posted 15 July 2007 - 12:05 AM

However, Asian women are known for getting osteoporosis in later years... perhaps the amounts of calcium, although found in many of the foods they eat, are still too low to keep bones strong. Perhaps, Publius, a quick little stir fry with bok choy and tofu would do the trick!


However if this was true you would expect higher incidence of osteoporosis in Asia.

http://www.wrongdiag...ats-country.htm
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#7 wlee15

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Posted 15 July 2007 - 03:12 AM

However if this was true you would expect higher incidence of osteoporosis in Asia.

http://www.wrongdiag...ats-country.htm


Look closer

#8 urofpersia

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Posted 15 July 2007 - 09:21 AM

Look closer


I did.

Oh, I see, those stats are not actual ones collated buy extrapolated. Guess I will have to find other stats then.

Edited by urofpersia, 15 July 2007 - 09:30 AM.

Ur of Persia

#9 Monkey-King

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Posted 17 July 2007 - 12:32 AM

This is a question that I've often wondered myself. Here in Hong Kong the diet has traditionally been laden with green leafy vegetables that provide a certain amount of calcium (Bok Choy, Tong Choy, Broccolli etc.) - but I don't think this provides nearly as much calcium as you're going to find in a western diet that is heavy in milk and cheese.

Among the older Chinese people here in Hong Kong you do see a lot of osteoperosis. People quite literally shrinking with age and become bent over. Some cases are quite severe. Perhaps it's all the more noticable because the elderly here in Hong Kong are such an integral and visible part of society in comparison to the western world. Here you have trash haulers and cardboard collectors well into their 80s. You generally don't see that in the west.

You see quite a lot of cases of bowlegged older Chinese... which I believe is due to lack of calcium. So I'm sure if you dig there are studies that indicate that Chinese are predisposed to osteoperosis because of their dietary habits. Some of this may be changing the more and more western food and eating habits influence the Chinese. However sadly most of that influence seems to extend to obesity problems.

If convenience/fast food are anything to go by... Hong Kong is no doubt one of the worlds leaders. I see daily Chinese schoolkids (and adults for that matter) that seem to exist only on 7-11/Circle K diets. Of course... sadly as well... McDonalds here is NEVER empty.

#10 Kimchee

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Posted 17 July 2007 - 08:43 AM

Salmon and sardine are not considered vegetarian.

I doubt tofu has calcium by itself. Those soya bean milk that has added calcium would be sufficient.

Milk/yogurt has the most calcium. Brocolli has sufficient calcium too.


Oops... I had a non-dairy list... not necessarily vegetarian. If you are vegan like my son, you would avoid the dairy and fish completely.

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#11 Kimchee

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Posted 17 July 2007 - 08:51 AM

However if this was true you would expect higher incidence of osteoporosis in Asia.

http://www.wrongdiag...ats-country.htm


Yeah, it doesn't say what the heritage of the Americans is... after I posted the message about Asian women, I later read that Caucasian women have a high incidence of osteoporosis as well... although those numbers throughout Asian countries listed seemed pretty high. I guess once we ladies hit menopause, we need all the calcium we can get no matter who we are!

Kimcee
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#12 thirdgumi

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Posted 17 July 2007 - 08:56 AM

When Chineses want to get calcium, they would make bone soups 骨头汤.
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#13 Monkey-King

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Posted 18 July 2007 - 02:58 AM

When Chineses want to get calcium, they would make bone soups ???.


Do you have an idea of the amount of calcium that's obtained by these soups?

Often here in China we do have soup that uses bone for flavouring the stock. Primarily pork bones... in the south anyhow. While the Chinese are known for taking their meals with soup... I can't imagine just these soups providing all that much calcium in the Chinese diet.

Of interest is that in Hong Kong you often see a good number of elderly people that are severely bow legged in the old fishing communities like in Aberdeen and Tin Wan. As I recall when I was working in Aberdeen it was more often women than men that suffered from this. My assumption was always that it was due to oesteoperosis... but I'm not sure. I'm curious if the diets of these Chinese have even less calcium than other types of Chinese?

#14 thirdgumi

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Posted 18 July 2007 - 06:42 AM

I'm no expert on diet, but when I was little, the old people always talked about eating bone soups would help grow.
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#15 xng

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Posted 18 July 2007 - 10:50 AM

This is a question that I've often wondered myself. Here in Hong Kong the diet has traditionally been laden with green leafy vegetables that provide a certain amount of calcium (Bok Choy, Tong Choy, Broccolli etc.) - but I don't think this provides nearly as much calcium as you're going to find in a western diet that is heavy in milk and cheese.


Most chinese diet nowadays consist of mainly meat and not vegetables. So I don't think they have enough calcium due to this. If they have large servings of vege instead of meat every meal, it will provide them enough calcium.

This is due to the misconception that meat eating is nutritious and tasty and the vege eating is considered bland and non-nutritious among traditional non-educated folks.




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