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10 Best Calcium Supplements Reviewed and Fully Compared

last updated Feb 06, 2019
Without calcium, our skeletal health quickly diminishes because our bodies consistently lose calcium through our skin, hair, nails, and sweat—and unfortunately, our bodies do not produce it on their own. It’s important we incorporate one of the best calcium supplements. The National Osteoporosis Foundation recommends at least 1000mg of calcium daily (and 1200 mg for women over 50 and men over 70!) This can be almost impossible to achieve via diet alone, so it’s especially important to seek out the best calcium supplements available to you. It also helps our nerves transmit signals, clot blood, regulate blood pressure, and efficiently contract our muscles. If you aren’t getting enough calcium, your body will extract it from your bones—leaving you at risk of injury and diminishing your strength.

In a Hurry? The test winner after 18 hrs of research

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New Chapter Bone Strength
94.8/100 our score
Product Purity
95
Advanced Features
94
Effectiveness
92
Use
98
New Chapter Bone Strength
Why is it better?

Plant-based calcium with a variety of other supplements to support bone and heart health

Sustainably sourced

No synthetic binders or filler

Slim tablets

In a Hurry? Editors choice:
New Chapter Bone Strength
Test Winner: New Chapter Bone Strength
Researched Sources
17
Researched Sources
Reviews Considered
1575
Reviews Considered
Hours Researching
18
Hours Researching
Products Evaluated
25
Products Evaluated
Last Updated:
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By EJ Callanan:

Just like your body the supplement market is always changing, so we added three new products to this buying guide to reflect this. Today we added: Vitafusion Gummies, Solaray Calcium Magnesium Zinc, and NOW Calcium Carbonate Powder to our buying guide. This last one is particularly cool in that it can also be used to make toothpaste or even chalk paint for arts and crafts.

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Product Purity Advanced Features Effectiveness Use By Default
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PictureProduct
Name
Rating
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#1
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
94.8
Product Purity
95%
Advanced Features
94%
Effectiveness
92%
Use
98%
Price Comparison Last Updated (26.03.19)
$36.78
#2
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92.8
Product Purity
96%
Advanced Features
93%
Effectiveness
92%
Use
90%
Price Comparison Last Updated (26.03.19)
$8.86
#3
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
90.8
Product Purity
93%
Advanced Features
85%
Effectiveness
94%
Use
91%
Price Comparison Last Updated (26.03.19)
$9.33
#4
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
89.5
Product Purity
91%
Advanced Features
88%
Effectiveness
91%
Use
88%
Price Comparison Last Updated (26.03.19)
$8.54
#5
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
87.3
Product Purity
99%
Advanced Features
80%
Effectiveness
95%
Use
75%
Price Comparison Last Updated (26.03.19)
#6
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
86.8
Product Purity
90%
Advanced Features
86%
Effectiveness
87%
Use
84%
Price Comparison Last Updated (26.03.19)
$21.99
#7
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
85.8
Product Purity
92%
Advanced Features
82%
Effectiveness
87%
Use
82%
Price Comparison Last Updated (26.03.19)
$17.98
#8
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
83.3
Product Purity
90%
Advanced Features
80%
Effectiveness
84%
Use
79%
Price Comparison Last Updated (26.03.19)
$15.89
#9
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
82
Product Purity
85%
Advanced Features
80%
Effectiveness
88%
Use
75%
Price Comparison Last Updated (26.03.19)
$15.36
#10
The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
81.5
Product Purity
75%
Advanced Features
85%
Effectiveness
80%
Use
86%
Price Comparison Last Updated (26.03.19)
$9.99
In Depth Review Top 10
  • New Chapter Bone Strength
  • Vitafusion Gummies
  • Nature Made
  • Kirkland Signature
  • NOW
  • Rainbow
  • Solaray
  • Nature’s Bounty
  • Solgar Calcium Magnesium with Vitamin D3
  • GNC
Table of contents
  • Criteria Used for Evaluation
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Sources

Our Top 10 Best Calcium Supplements

1. New Chapter Bone Strength

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
94.8
New Chapter Bone Strength
Product Purity
95
Advanced Features
94
Effectiveness
92
Use
98
best offer for today
$36.78
Pros:

Plant-based calcium with a variety of other supplements to support bone and heart health

Sustainably sourced

No synthetic binders or filler

Slim tablets

Cons:

More expensive

This supplement is unique as the calcium is derived from algae rather than mineral sources used for calcium citrate or calcium carbonate. It also boasts some additional supplements such as Vitamin D and Vitamin K that may be beneficial for both bone and heart health. Multiple users noted measured improvement in bone density after a year of use.

Read more

Supplements

1 tablet provides 256mg of Calcium as well as 333 IU Vitamin D, Vitamin K, magnesium, strontium, silicon and vanadium.

Other ingredients

All plant-based. Vegetarian, Kosher and gluten-free. No Dairy, No Eggs, No Nuts, No Fish or Shellfish. No synthetic binders or fillers.

Quality

Verified by the NonGMO project and B corporation - a nonprofit organization that certifies businesses meeting high standards for social and environmental sustainability

Cost and Value

This is one of the more expensive supplements on the market but you are getting good quality, plant-based and sustainably sourced ingredients.

2. Vitafusion Gummies

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
92.8
Vitafusion Gummies
Product Purity
96
Advanced Features
93
Effectiveness
92
Use
90
best offer for today
$8.86
Pros:

Delicious taste

Absorbed easily by your body

Non-GMO, gluten-free, no artificial sweeteners or synthetic dyes

Dairy free

Cons:

There may be inconsistencies in the size of the gummies

These gummies get high marks for their delicious taste and effectiveness. Each serving has 500mg of calcium which is approximately as much as two 6 oz. glasses of milk. Despite being in gummy form, they don't have any high fructose corn syrup or artificial sweeteners and are non-GMO and gluten-free, and don't contain any artificial dyes.

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Product Purity

Pretty good. They are non-GMO, gluten-free, and are naturally sweetened and colored. They are also dairy-free. One user noted that they received a bottle that contained several gummies of different sizes, which may be problematic when it comes to taking the correct dose.

Advanced Features

This brand claims to be the only gummy that is proven to be absorbed by your body and this is backed up by scientific studies.

Effectiveness

Because of their high rate of absorbability they work great for boosting your calcium levels. Users reported feeling a difference in how they felt very quickly and that this continued over time.

Use

This is a great option for people who dislike taking pills or capsules, or whose bodies don't do well when it comes to absorbing calcium in those forms.

3. Nature Made

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
90.8
Nature Made
Product Purity
93
Advanced Features
85
Effectiveness
94
Use
91
best offer for today
$9.33
Pros:

Absorb more calcium with only one tablet

USP verified; Very affordable

Quite affordable

Easy to take tablets

Cons:

Not suitable for vegetarians or vegans

Just one tablet a day provides 600mg of Calcium and 400 IU Vitamin D. Calcium sourced from calcium carbonate makes this supplement more affordable. While some sources note calcium carbonate can be more difficult to absorb, that does not seem to be the case for this supplement. Possibly owing to the slow-release nature of this tablet, users find this easy to take and tolerate.

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Supplements

The supplement has 600 mg calcium (60% daily recommended intake) sourced from calcium carbonate and 400 IU Vitamin D per tablet.

Quality

The product is USP verified and third-party tested. Labdoor reports excellent label accuracy with the calcium level matching the amount reported on the bottle and 18% more Vitamin D than the label amount.

Cost and Value

It is extremely affordable and not only is the bottle cheap relative to other options, but you are also only taking one tablet a day and it will last you that much longer.

4. Kirkland Signature

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
89.5
Kirkland Signature
Product Purity
91
Advanced Features
88
Effectiveness
91
Use
88
best offer for today
$8.54
Pros:

Affordable source of calcium citrate

Good source of Vitamin D3, Vitamin B6 and Magnesium

Easily absorbed

Cheap

Cons:

Larger tablets that may be harder for some to swallow

This is the best value, especially for calcium citrate, which is more easily absorbed than calcium carbonate. Other vitamins in this supplement include Vitamin D3, Vitamin B6, Magnesium and Zinc.

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Supplements

Each tablet has 250mg of calcium, 400IU Vitamin D3, 5mg Vitamin B6, 40mg Magnesium, 5mg Zinc as well as Copper, Manganese, and Boron.

Other ingredients

This product also has titanium dioxide as a “watchlist ingredient”. There is no evidence to suggest titanium dioxide is harmful when used in supplements.

Cost and Value

The supplement costs only $0.06 a serving! Recommended serving size is 2 tablets daily although this would only be 50% of the daily recommended intake. These tablets are on the larger side and may not be suited for people unaccustomed to swallowing pills.

5. NOW

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
87.3
NOW
Product Purity
99
Advanced Features
80
Effectiveness
95
Use
75
best offer for today
Pros:

100% pure calcium carbonate powder

Extremely versatile

Can be used to make your own healthcare products

One order will last a long time

Good alternative to TUMS for heartburn relief

Cons:

Some users prefer pills and capsules

This product is unique on our list in that it is pure calcium carbonate powder, not pills, capsules or gummies. To take it you simply mix it with a little water. It's great for relief from heartburn, as well as all the other well-known benefits of calcium. A cool thing is that it is also great for making your own natural healthcare products such as toothpaste, or for adding to pet food to help your furry friends have optimal health as well.

Read more

Product Purity

It only contains 100% calcium carbonate powder. It has not been third-party verified, however the company has been in business since 1968 and is well-known, respected, and trusted in the supplement community.

Advanced Features

Users loved the versatility of this product, and used it to make their own toothpaste, for a reduction in the acidity of foods such as tomato sauce when they cook, or even mixed with water for heartburn relief or even painting on a chalkboard.

Use

This is a great product for health conscious people as well as people who are into crafts and DIY to have around the house. This is because of its versatility since you can use it as a health product, give it to pets, or even making your own toothpaste.

6. Rainbow

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
86.8
Rainbow
Product Purity
90
Advanced Features
86
Effectiveness
87
Use
84
best offer for today
$21.99
Pros:

80% of daily recommended calcium

Good source of Vitamin D

Additional supplements beneficial to runners

Good value

Small tablets

Cons:

Needs to be taken twice a day

This calcium comes from calcium citrate, which is the most easily absorbed of the mineral sources. In addition to being a good source of Vitamin D, it also adds in some additional supplements such as Spirulina, Horsetail extract, and Boron as glycinate that may be beneficial to runners.

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Supplements

200 mg calcium sourced from calcium citrate. 200 IU Vitamin D. Additional supplements include Spirulina, which is a good source of dietary protein, iron, and other vitamins, Horsetail extract (plant-based) which may provide some anti-inflammatory effects and Boron as glycinate which may be beneficial for bone and muscle health.

Quality

Highly rated when tested by third-party Labdoor. Testing showed great purity and fairly good label accuracy with 12.5% more calcium than reported and 25.6% more Vitamin D.

Cost and Value

This supplement is pried on the mid-range pricing. Reviewers note these tabs may not be mini as the name indicates but the tablets are smaller than most and easier to swallow.

7. Solaray

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
85.8
Solaray
Product Purity
92
Advanced Features
82
Effectiveness
87
Use
82
best offer for today
$17.98
Pros:

Well-rounded supplement

Also helps the circulatory and nervous system

Highly absorbable

Very effective

Cons:

Large pills may be difficult to swallow

In addition to calcium, this product also contains magnesium that optimizes the health of your heart, muscles, and nerves, and zinc to assist your body in increasing its immune functioning. It is also absorbed easily by your body because of the added glutamic acid. Users enjoyed how effective it is in increasing their health in multiple areas but did find the capsules to be large and sometimes hard to swallow.

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Product Purity

This company uses a third-party labratory to verify the ingredients in their supplements. It's ingredients are certified to be non-GMO and vegan as well.

Advanced Features

It has added glutamic acid which helps your body to more easily absorb the ingredients and since it has not only calcium but magnesium and zinc as well, it will not only help you have strong bones and teeth, but can help with issues such as insomnia, circulatory problems, and a suppressed immune system.

Effectiveness

Users found that the added glutamic acid really does help the body to be utilized the calcium, and that they felt the effects very quickly after starting to take this supplement.

Use

This product is good for people who want a supplement that does more than just help give them strong bones and healthy teeth.

8. Nature’s Bounty

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
83.3
Nature’s Bounty
Product Purity
90
Advanced Features
80
Effectiveness
84
Use
79
best offer for today
$15.89
Pros:

1200 mg calcium - high dose

D3 Vitamin

Quick release capsules and easy to absorb

Promotes the immune system

Cons:

You get a higher dose and this means you pay more

If you feel you're short on calcium and want to boost and balance your bodies calcium level, this is the supplement with the way to go. The combining of vitamin D3 with calcium means that this vitamin will help absorb the calcium effectively.

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Features and benefits

The promotion and maintenance of healthy strong bones. Also, there are others that promote the immune system

Added ingredients

The blending of vitamin D3 works towards assisting the body in absorbing calcium. Suggestions that the risk of osteoporosis is lowered. Liquid filled capsules for fast release and quick absorption.

Cost and Value

Cost more than most other competing brands. If you get more expect to pay a bit more.

9. Solgar Calcium Magnesium with Vitamin D3

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
82
Solgar Calcium Magnesium with Vitamin D3
Product Purity
85
Advanced Features
80
Effectiveness
88
Use
75
best offer for today
$15.36
Pros:

Easy to use

Additional mineral and vitamin

Improves your overall health

Highly affordable

Cons:

Some users may prefer a pure calcium supplement

This supplement has quickly become a favorite for many in the past year. It offers a combination of Calcium, Magnesium and Vitamin D3--and together they work synergistically within your body and provide you with benefits that will improve your overall health.

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Content

This product provides you with 1000mg of calcium, 500mg of magnesium, and 400 IU of Vitamin D3. It is also gluten-free, Non-GMO, and free of unwanted preservatives or ingredients.

Additional Features

It has added Zinc and magnesium components in the tablets that help in ensuring additional calcium is present in bones, provide energy and boost performance.

Cost and Value

These are highly affordable and a perfect option for all athletes.

10. GNC

The rating is based on the average rating (1-100) from all the criteria in which we rated this product.
81.5
GNC
Product Purity
75
Advanced Features
85
Effectiveness
80
Use
86
best offer for today
$9.99
Pros:

Affordable

Magnesium and Vitamin D

Easy to swallow tablets

Quite affordable

Cons:

Calcium carbonate may be more difficult to absorb

Titanium dioxide

This is a more affordable option that is also a great source of Magnesium and Vitamin D. Calcium is sourced from calcium carbonate making it a bit cheaper. Reviewers are very satisfied with the cost and results of these simple supplements.

Read more

Supplements

It includes 333mg Calcium Carbonate, 266 IU Vitamin D3 and 166 mg Magnesium per tablet. Labdoor ranks this supplement highly for purity and ingredient safety but it does note titanium dioxide as a “watchlist ingredient”. Titanium dioxide is a widely used colorant in cosmetics and supplements. While there have been no documented harmful effects through ingestion, there is a risk of harmful effects with occupational exposure.

Convenience

Recommended serving is 3 tablets daily. Most calcium can only be absorbed 500mg at a time so these 333mg tablets may need to be taken at separate times during the day to achieve the daily recommended intake.

Cost and Value

This supplement is on the cheaper end of calcium supplements.

Criteria Used for Evaluation

Product Purity

First and foremost, what type of calcium and how much is in each tablet? The majority of calcium found in supplements is derived from a mineral source. The three most common types of mineral calcium are calcium carbonate, calcium phosphate, and calcium citrate.
Calcium carbonate is the most elemental, meaning that it is cheaper to produce but also may be more difficult to absorb with stomach acid alone. This form of calcium may cause gastrointestinal symptoms such as gas or constipation and should be taken with food or acidic beverages such as orange juice.
Calcium Phosphate has slightly lower elemental calcium concentration. While it is generally more easily absorbed with fewer side effects, it tends to be a bit pricier. Calcium citrate has much less elemental calcium and is most easily absorbed, however, this also means it is most expensive.
In addition to calcium, runners may benefit from a variety of additional vitamins and supplements. Vitamin D is most commonly combined with calcium in these supplements, as it is a necessity for absorbing the calcium. Other common additions are the essential minerals magnesium and zinc. Magnesium is vital to a wide number of bodily processes but is particularly important in energy metabolism and muscle contraction and relaxation. Zinc is also needed for a variety of body processes but is especially important to proper immune function. Maintaining healthy levels of each of these minerals is certainly beneficial for runners. Especially when considering that both of these essential minerals are commonly depleted through endurance exercise.

Advanced Features

When seeking a supplement we are obviously interested in the minerals and vitamins it has to offer. However, simply mixing these ingredients together does not provide a tablet or gummy that is appealing or even possible to take. Additional ingredients are needed to add mass, bind the supplements together and form them into tablets, capsules or chewables. Additional ingredients also can be added for a variety of other functions such as adding flavor or color, coating tablets to make them smoother or controlling how quickly they dissolve in the stomach.
None of these filler ingredients are dangerous or unsafe, especially in the small amounts found in supplements, but a few are somewhat controversial. One noted as a “watchlist ingredient” by Labdoor is titanium dioxide. Titanium dioxide is a widely used pigment that gives the tablets bright white coloring. There have been some studies suggesting carcinogenic properties when inhaled through occupational exposure but no evidence to suggest it is dangerous when ingested.
These additional ingredients cannot be avoided but the amount is typically very small and the wide variety allows you to avoid ingredients you are not comfortable with. As a runner, chances are you pay pretty close attention to what goes in your body and you do not want to make exceptions for your supplement. If you are following a gluten-free, vegetarian or vegan diet you do not need to compromise that for your dietary supplements.

Effectiveness

Dietary supplements are not regulated by the FDA in the same way as other medications or even foods are. Other drug products are tested by the FDA and need to be shown to be both safe and effective before they are even put on the market. Dietary supplements are not in this category and the law does not allow for any testing before the product hits the market. Once the product is on the market the FDA can investigate any claims of adverse effects but must prove the supplement is “unsafe” before limiting its usage. In the case of dietary supplements, the FDA is not testing before it hits the market and it is also not testing for efficacy. So, you can be taking a calcium supplement Therefore, it is important that we look for trusted brands whose purity and accuracy have been tested by third-party organizations such as the USDA or Labrador.

Use

The standard recommended intake for calcium is 1000 mg per day (1,200 mg per day for women over 50 and men over 70). However, this amount should include calcium obtained through diet. It is possible to take too much calcium. Higher levels of calcium have been linked to kidney and heart issues so it is important to consider how much calcium is obtained through diet prior to selecting a supplement. People regularly consuming calcium-rich foods such as milk, yogurt or dark leafy greens may want to consider taking supplements with calcium. While people lacking calcium in their diet may opt for supplements with calcium levels closer to the daily recommended dose.

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Absorption and dosage

Calcium is best absorbed in small amounts throughout the day, preferably in 500-600mg at a time with food, from either supplements or your diet. Everyone knows that dairy is high in calcium, but it can also be found in seeds, some leafy green vegetables, almonds, legumes, and sardines. Even the best supplement can't compare to the benefits of calcium that is found in whole foods, so we recommend both a supplement and a diet that is rich in the foods mentioned above.

Don't go overboard

As with anything, moderation is key. You can consume too much calcium with potential negative effects to your kidneys, or the absorption reduction of other essential vitamins. If how much calcium you're getting is an issue for you, or you're concerned you may be getting too much between supplements and the foods you eat, we recommend talking to your doctor or even consulting a nutritionist.

Frequently Asked Questions

q: Why is calcium important?
a:

Calcium is an essential mineral for life. Not only is it needed along with Vitamin D for bone health but it is also vital for proper muscle, nerve, and vascular function. In addition to building our bones, calcium plays a role in forming blood clots and contracting muscles.

q: What are the benefits of taking a calcium supplement?
a:

Calcium is a mineral that the body cannot produce on its own. We are constantly using and losing calcium through regular bodily processes but have no way of replenishing the stores on our own. We depend on food to provide us with calcium but most people do not get enough calcium through diet alone. Supplements are an easy and effective way to add some additional calcium and ensure we are meeting our bodies needs. Doing so can reduce the risk of developing osteoporosis and in turn will decrease the risk of fracture from falls or stress injuries.

q: Why is calcium so important for women?
a:

Women are at significantly higher risk for developing osteoporosis than men. In America 80% of osteoporosis cases are women. The Osteoporosis Foundation attributes this to women generally having smaller bones than men and the sharp decrease in the bone-protecting hormone estrogen that occurs with menopause. Due to the increased risk, it is even more important for women to do everything they can to maintain strong and healthy bones. Getting enough calcium, vitamin D, and weight-bearing exercise are the best things women can do for good bone health.

q: When should I start taking calcium?
a:

Although post-menopausal women have the highest risk for osteoporosis, getting enough calcium is recommended for everyone. The higher bone density you have when you begin menopause, the less risk you have of developing osteoporosis. So while your risk for osteoporosis may not be high right now, it is certainly not too soon to start building strong bones.

q: How much calcium is too much?
a:

There is no consensus on how much calcium is too much. However, some recent studies suggest that the current standard (1000mg or 1200mg for women over 50 and men over 70) may even be a little too high. Consider how much calcium you are getting from your diet and avoid exceeding the recommended dose to stay on the safe side. Remember there is no benefit to getting more calcium than the body can absorb and it could actually be harmful to the kidneys and heart.

q: How do I figure out how much calcium I need?
a:

The National Osteoporosis Foundation offers a Calcium Calculator to enter age, gender, and diet. When in doubt, talk to your doctor.

q: What are good dietary sources of calcium?
a:

Dairy products particularly milk, yogurt, ricotta, and cottage cheeses as well as dark leafy vegetables such as kale, collard greens, and broccoli rabe are the most common calcium go-to. However, many breakfast foods, cereals, protein bars, juices, and soymilks are fortified with additional calcium.

q: How do I make sure I am getting enough Vitamin D?
a:

Vitamin D can be difficult to obtain naturally. Sunlight is a great source but covering up with SPF, which is highly recommended, prevents the skin from absorbing it. Some wild caught fish are good sources of Vitamin D and many dairy products have vitamin D added but most people require supplements in addition. Current guidelines recommend 400-800 IU daily for men and women under 50 and 800-1000 IU for age 50 and older. Unlike calcium, there does not seem to be a downside to having more vitamin D.

Sources

  1. National Osteoporosis Foundation, Calcium/Vitamin D, Website,
  2. US Food and Drug Administration, Dietary Supplements, Website, Apr 14, 2016
  3. Harvard Health Publications, How Much Calcium Do You Really Need?, Website, Jul 17, 2015
  4. Arthritis Foundation, What You Need To Know About Calcium Supplements, Website,