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Make sure you're choosing the best calcium supplements approved in our tests!

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Alphabetical list of calcium supplements compared in this review

View Larger Image 7826_large_Bayer-Citrical-BoneHealth-2022.png

Bayer Citracal Petites

View Larger Image 7834_large_Caltrate-BoneHealth-2022.png

Caltrate

View Larger Image 7824_large_CountryLife-Calcium-BoneHealth-2022.png

Country Life Calcium Magnesium Complex

View Larger Image 7839_large_Flora-BoneHealth-VitaminDK-BoneHealth-2022.png

Flora Bone Health+ with Calcium, Magnesium, and Vitamin D & K

View Larger Image 7835_large_GNC-CalciumPlus-BoneHealth-2022.png

GNC Calcium Plus

View Larger Image 7827_large_GNC-VitaminD3-BoneHealth-2022.png

GNC Vitamin D-3

View Larger Image 7832_large_GNC-VitaminK-BoneHealth-2022.png

GNC Vitamin K

View Larger Image 7842_large_JarrowFormulas-BoneHealth-2022.png

Jarrow Formulas BoneUp

View Larger Image 7828_large_KirklandSignature-Calcium-BoneHealth-2022.png

Kirkland Signature Adult Gummies Calcium - Orange & Cherry

View Larger Image 7843_large_LifeExtension-VitaminK-BoneHealth-2022.png

Life Extension Bone Restore with Vitamin K2

View Larger Image 7829_large_LilCrotters-Calcium-BoneHealth-2022.png

L'il Critters Calcium + D3

View Larger Image 7825_large_MetabolicMaintenance-CalMagPowder-BoneHealth-2022.png

Metabolic Maintenance Cal/Mag Powder

View Larger Image 7841_large_Naturelo-BoneHealth-2022.png

Naturelo Bone Strength Plant Calcium Complex With Magnesium, C, D3, K2, & Zinc

View Larger Image 7830_large_NaturesBounty-Calcium-BoneHealth-2022.png

Nature's Bounty Calcium

View Larger Image 7837_large_NaturesWay-CalciumD3-BoneHealth-2022.png

Nature's Way Calcium & Vitamin D3 - Citrus Flavored

View Larger Image 7840_large_NewChapter-BoneHealth-2022.png

New Chapter Bone Strength Take Care

View Larger Image 7836_large_ProCapsLaboratories-D3-BoneHealth-2022.png

ProCaps Laboratories Andrew Lessman's Vitamin D3 1000

View Larger Image 7821_large_PureEncapsulations-Calcium-BoneHealth-2022.png

Pure Encapsulations Calcium (Citrate)

View Larger Image 7822_large_Solaray-Calcium-BoneHealth-2022.png

Solaray Calcium Citrate 1,000 mg

View Larger Image 7833_large_Solgar-Calcium-BoneHealth-2022.png

Solgar Calcium Magnesium Plus Boron

View Larger Image 7823_large_Swanson-CalciumAspartate-BoneHealth-2022.png

Swanson Calcium Aspartate

View Larger Image 7838_large_TwinLab-Boron-BoneHealth-2022.png

TwinLab Tri-Boron Plus 12

View Larger Image 7831_large_WebberNaturals-D3-BoneHealth-2022.png

Webber Naturals Calcium Citrate Vitamin D3

Summary

  • Health benefits of calcium:

    It is important that you get an adequate amount of calcium, as it is essential to maintaining your bones and plays critical roles in nerve transmission, muscle contraction, and your cardiovascular system. In fact, getting sufficient calcium each day (1,000 to 1,200 mg for adults) from your diet (i.e., not all from supplements) may decrease your risk of dying from cardiovascular disease. For details, see What It Does.
  • Good sources of calcium:

    You may already get enough calcium in your diet from dairy, beans, green-leafy vegetables, and other foods. In fact, with the exception of girls ages 9 to 18, most individuals take in enough calcium from what they eat. For the recommended intakes of calcium and to learn how much you may already get from food, see What to Consider When Using.
  • Safety and side effects of calcium supplements:

    If you're not getting enough calcium from your diet, supplements can help. Calcium supplements have shown some modest benefits for postmenopausal women, particularly those on hormonal therapy after hysterectomy (see What It Does). But be careful! Calcium from supplements may increase the risk of heart attack and stroke if you get too much from supplements (generally over 1,000 mg per day) or if you already get at least 805 mg of calcium from your diet. Calcium supplements also increase the risk of kidney stones in postmenopausal women. See Concerns and Cautions for more information.
  • What's the best form of calcium?

    Calcium carbonate is the most common form of calcium in supplements, but other forms, such as calcium citrate, may be better absorbed. A slight downside to these other forms is that they require larger pills (or more pills) to get the same amount of calcium compared to  calcium carbonate. Other forms include calcium malate, triphosphate, and hydroxyapatite (derived from cow bone), as well as "plant-based" calcium such as AlgaeCal (derived from algae). For more about the pros and cons of each form, see What to Consider When Using.
  • How much calcium to take?

    Since you can't absorb more than about 500 mg of calcium at a time, consider limiting intake from supplements to 500 mg or less at a time and, certainly, no more than 1,000 mg total per day. Also, be sure you are getting enough vitamin D, as it is necessary for your body to absorb and utilize calcium from both foods and supplements and may reduce some of the risks associated with calcium supplements. Vitamin D is in many of the supplements tested in this Review. For extensive information about vitamin D, see the Vitamin D Supplements Review.
  • Which calcium supplement is best?

    Not all supplements are properly made and live up to their ingredient claims. In fact, three combination products failed our tests because they provided as much as 240% more or 96% less of a promised key ingredient (see What CL Found). ConsumerLab selected several Top Picks among calcium supplements that were Approved in testing, including tablets, caplets, gummies, powders, and liquids — some of which provide a good dose of calcium for just pennies a day. Use our Results table to narrow in on an Approved product that provides the right amount of calcium and other ingredients (e.g., magnesium, vitamin D, vitamin K, and/or boron) to meet your needs.
  • When and how to take calcium?

    If your calcium supplement includes vitamin D and/or vitamin K, take it with the meal that contains the most fats and oils, as this may increase absorption of those vitamins. Otherwise, you can take calcium with any meal, but don't take it at the same time that you take other mineral supplements as the calcium may reduce their absorption. If you are taking calcium citrate, you may be able to take it with or without food. Follow the directions on the supplement. (see How to Take)

You must be a member to get the full test results along with ConsumerLab.com's recommendations and quality ratings. You will get results for 17 calcium supplements selected by ConsumerLab.com and 6 others that passed testing in its voluntary Quality Certification Program. In this comprehensive review, you'll discover:
  • Which calcium supplements failed our quality ratings and which passed -- including combinations with magnesium,vitamins D & K, and boron
  • CL's Top Picks for calcium supplements
  • Cost comparisons to help you choose a calcium supplement offering the best value based on amounts of elemental calcium
  • The pros and cons of different forms of calcium such as carbonate, citrate, gluconate, oyster shell, coral calcium and plant-based calcium --and which may be best for you
  • How much calcium you may already be getting from foods and other sources, such as antacids taken for heartburn
  • Recommendations on calcium dosage by age and gender and for specific uses, as well as how much calcium may be too much and how best to take calcium supplements
  • The best way to take calcium supplements and what to look for on labels
  • Potential drug interactions and side effects of calcium supplements

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