Want a healthy treat that is good enough to substitute for dessert? Then go ahead and dive straight into my 4 ingredient chocolate peanut butter protein yogurt. Another recipe packed with protein, calcium and all around deliciousness. Keep reading for the recipe and a few things to keep in mind if you’ve been told your calcium is low, particularly if you are looking to supplement.
I introduced my favorite way to use greek yogurt a couple weeks ago. Sometimes, I get crazy and decide to add peanut butter.
I’m usually like “Ehhhh..are you sure you want to experiment? You don’t get to have greek yogurt in your fridge often..”But sometimes I take the plunge. Usually, I’ll be like, “Chocolate annnnddd peanut butter?!” YES! I mean seriously, who can’t get behind that combination?
I love peanut butter and always have. However, for this, I like to use peanut flour. It makes the yogurt EVEN thicker and adds a bit more protein. I may or may not try to stir it in incompletely so that I get chunks of peanut buttery goodness, too.
Now, let’s talk a bit about Calcium. There is so much that could be said that I’ll likely talk about it in various posts.
Have you been told that you have low a low calcium level?
Now there are many reasons why your calcium levels could be low. However, having blood work for just calcium and finding it low does not necessarily mean that you actually have low calcium levels in the body.
For one, you levels could just “appear” to be low. Why? A very common reason I see is poor nutrition. Poor nutrition leads to low albumin levels. (There are other reasons for low albumin too, though). Albumin is a protein that is found in the blood. This is important because calcium is protein bound in the blood. If there is not a lot of protein around, then less calcium can be bound which shows as a low level of calcium on a blood test. Therefore, an albumin level can allow for some quick math to be done in order to get a “corrected” calcium level.
If this is still low, then it might be a good idea to also check for an ionized calcium level. We talked about how calcium is bound to protein. However, it is the unbound, or “ionized” calcium that is used by the body. If your ionized calcium levels are normal, then you won’t be feeling any of the effects of low calcium levels. However, if the level is low, then you are definitely going to want to replace your calcium stores.
Next step? Repletion. ( It’s not a bad idea to figure out why your calcium is low, too)
Now getting enough calcium through the foods you eat is ideal, but this can be tricky especially if you are low. So, you can turn to supplements. There are a few things to keep in mind if you are using calcium pills to supplement.
When supplementing you are looking for the amount of elemental calcium provided. Pay attention to what type you are buying. Common forms are carbonate and citrate.
- Provides 40% elemental calcium
- Is best consumed with food as it is broken down well with the stomach acid
- Provides approximately 21% elemental calcium
- Is the best to use if you don’t have a lot of acid in the stomach.
- For example, the elderly tend to make less acid. Therefore, this would be a better choice.
- Those on proton pump inhibitors (PPIs) used to treat acid reflux would also benefit more from using the citrate form.
2. Make sure your Vitamin D level is not also low.
- Vitamin D assists in calcium absorption
3.More is not better.
- There are side effects of having too much calcium in your body
4. Calcium has interactions with other supplements and medications
- Make sure to talk to your doctor and let them know what else you are taking to make sure there aren’t negative interactions.
- Make sure to disclose prescribed, over the counter and herbal supplement medications.