Urban Legend: Quinoa Has More Calcium Than Cows Milk

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Urban Legend: Quinoa Has More Calcium Than Cows Milk

Postby beforewisdom » Thu Apr 12, 2012 9:09 pm

There is an urban legend going around on the internet ( and in at least one cookbook that I happened to buy ) that 1 cup of cooked quinoa has more calcium than a quart of milk.

This isn't true. One cup of cooked quinoa has about 1/10 the calcium of just 1 cup of cows milk.

From the USDA nutrition database:
http://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/show/6430

Not to be entirely negative, there are tasty vegan calcium sources that do match and exceed the amount of calcium found in cows milk:
http://beforewisdom.com/blog/milkandbon ... g-calcium/
Last edited by beforewisdom on Fri Apr 20, 2012 1:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Quinoa STILL doesn't have more calcium than a quart of m

Postby Heinrich » Fri Apr 13, 2012 9:17 am

Isnt it kinda important to know, what amount of "quinoa has more calcium than a quarter of milk"?
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Re: Quinoa STILL doesn't have more calcium than a quart of m

Postby Fallen_Horse » Fri Apr 13, 2012 10:02 am

Maybe because milk is only slightly calcium positive due to urinary excretion?
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Quinoa STILL doesn't have more calcium than a quart of milk

Postby tal » Fri Apr 13, 2012 10:41 am

[quote="Heinrich"]Isnt it kinda important to know, what amount of "quinoa has more calcium than a quarter of milk"?


Good point.

The amount of quinoa I eat, it probably does have more calcium than milk.
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Re: Quinoa STILL doesn't have more calcium than a quart of m

Postby beforewisdom » Fri Apr 13, 2012 10:59 am

[quote="Talyn"][quote="Heinrich"]Isnt it kinda important to know, what amount of "quinoa has more calcium than a quarter of milk"?


Good point.

The amount of quinoa I eat, it probably does have more calcium than milk.


Not really, the sites say 1 cup of calcium has more than 1 quart of milk.

It would be fantastic if 1 cup of quinoa had even the same calcium as 1 cup of milk.
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Re: Quinoa STILL doesn't have more calcium than a quart of m

Postby skoptic » Fri Apr 13, 2012 4:46 pm

Don't trust any websites... they all lie about the calcium content. No-one can mention the REAL amount online - I know the REAL amount, but every time I upload it, the interweb server things keep changing it :(

I can post it to anyone though....
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Re: Quinoa STILL doesn't have more calcium than a quart of m

Postby beforewisdom » Fri Apr 13, 2012 4:51 pm

[quote="skoptic"]Don't trust any websites... they all lie about the calcium content.


All of them? "Lie" means intentionally stating something that isn't true. Couldn't it be that some of those sites simply made mistakes?

I emailed one woman who had such a site. That seemed to be the case with her. She told me that she lifted the bogus stat from another vegan's web site, who likely got it from that cookbook author who had it on her site years ago. My guess is that original misquote happened as a mistake and this was back in the day when non-technical people couldn't easily change a web site for themselves, let along look up nutrition values for themselves.

[quote]
No-one can mention the REAL amount online -


Right here
http://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/show/6430

I just did :). That site is from the USDA nutrition database, the standard used for most free and non-free nutrition software.
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Re: Quinoa STILL doesn't have more calcium than a quart of m

Postby skoptic » Fri Apr 13, 2012 5:35 pm

[quote="beforewisdom"]
Right here
http://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/show/6430
I just did :). That site is from the USDA nutrition database, the standard used for most free and non-free nutrition software.


"Failed to open page".. your post has incurred the wrath of the interweb!
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Re: Quinoa STILL doesn't have more calcium than a quart of m

Postby Alistar » Tue Apr 17, 2012 2:07 am

Who really cares? The total amount isn't really the most important thing is it?

I thought cows milk was a shit way of getting calcium anyway as its poorly absorbed?

NZ dairy capital of the World, and look at our osteoporosis rates :arrow:

"Affects more than half of women, and nearly a third of men over age 60." Hmmmm...

Therefore I'm pretty sceptical of comparing anything to milk, as if its some sort of "gold standard" :roll:
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Re: Quinoa STILL doesn't have more calcium than a quart of m

Postby beforewisdom » Tue Apr 17, 2012 4:38 am

[quote="Alistar"]Who really cares? The total amount isn't really the most important thing is it?


It is the important thing. A number of vegan RDs have stated that vegans who don't get close to the recommend daily values experience a greater amount of bone fractures.



[quote]
Therefore I'm pretty sceptical of comparing anything to milk, as if its some sort of "gold standard" :roll:


The point of this thread isn't that.

The point is that vegans have been mistakenly passing on misinformation about quinoa being a good source of calcium when it isn't. That is bad misinformtion to pass on as many people might think they are getting plenty of calcium, when they aren't and that may get them sick or injured as a result.
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Re: Quinoa STILL doesn't have more calcium than a quart of m

Postby Alistar » Wed Apr 18, 2012 9:43 am

I meant the total amount of calcium in a particular food vs the amount of calcium actually absorbed by the body and/or leached out of the system from other components in said foodstuff.

NZers consume a shitload of milk/dairy products and look at our osteoporosis rates. If dairy products were so shit hot we wouldn't have a problem would we? Therefore how much calcium is absorbed in one's system is obviously IMO far more complicated than just what calcium content a particular food has.

What seems more important to me is ensuring we have enough vit D, vit K magnesium etc which are essential for calcium absorbtion. And limit soda's, alcohol, refined foods etc

I hardly eat quinoa, but I just see it as another useful grain to be eaten alongside Oats, wheat, and rice legumes etc in a varied diet. Eating just quinoa would be pretty obsessive wouldn't it? How many would do that?

[quote="beforewisdom"][quote="Alistar"]

Therefore I'm pretty sceptical of comparing anything to milk, as if its some sort of "gold standard" :roll:


The point of this thread isn't that...


Well it buys into it IMO.

Anyway here's a study of vegetarians(not vegans) vs omni's re osteoporosis rates which I still find quite encouraging

http://www.ajcn.org/content/25/6/555.full.pdf

[quote]Summary
A study of the bone density of vegetarians
compared with age- and sex-matched omnivore
controls was carried out. A significant
difference was noted in vegetarians, which
suggests that they are less prone to osteoporosis
than omnivores. Other biochemical differences
were also found.
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Re: Quinoa STILL doesn't have more calcium than a quart of m

Postby beforewisdom » Wed Apr 18, 2012 1:21 pm

Alistar

Nobody is using cows milk as a "gold standard" of calcium sources. It is just a calcium source that people are familiar with so people use it to give perspective, like putting an empty can of soda next to an object you are taking a picture of to give the viewer a perspective on the side.

The point of my original post and this thread is that a seriously bad piece of misinformation has been passed around like a cold, starting on the internet and making its way into printed cookbooks. That piece of misinformation being that that quinoa has a lot more calcium than it actually does.
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Re: Quinoa STILL doesn't have more calcium than a quart of m

Postby thestoatyone » Wed Apr 18, 2012 10:16 pm

As I see it, it's more a "Getting our house in order" kinda thread, making sure that we are making credible claims backed by science in order to make a convincing case for an animal free diet to the population in general, rather than a discussion about calcium and vegans in general, which is covered, well, just about everywhere else.

We ain't going to get taken seriously as a movement if we look all Gillian McKeith in our approach to the nutrient content of veg...
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Re: Urban Legend: Quinoa Has More Calcium Than Cows Milk

Postby BlueRose » Wed Jun 27, 2012 1:59 pm

[quote="beforewisdom"]There is an urban legend going around on the internet ( and in at least one cookbook that I happened to buy ) that 1 cup of cooked quinoa has more calcium than a quart of milk.

This isn't true. One cup of cooked quinoa has about 1/10 the calcium of just 1 cup of cows milk.

From the USDA nutrition database:
http://ndb.nal.usda.gov/ndb/foods/show/6430

Not to be entirely negative, there are tasty vegan calcium sources that do match and exceed the amount of calcium found in cows milk:
http://beforewisdom.com/blog/milkandbon ... g-calcium/


Um...don't they ADD calcium to the milk to give it the amount of calcium that it has?

And where do the cows get their calcium?

I know, I'm on a vegan board, singing to the Greek chorus...but still. ;)
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Re: Urban Legend: Quinoa Has More Calcium Than Cows Milk

Postby Hiking Fox » Wed Jun 27, 2012 3:00 pm

[quote="BlueRoseAnd where do the cows get their calcium?[/quote]

From all the leafy green stuff they eat.

Nuff said.
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