Dietary guidelines for calcium

Maintain your calcium intake

Calcium from food can help reduce oxalate levels in your body. Why? Because dietary calcium binds with oxalate in the digestive tract before it can reach the kidneys.

For most adults, the established Dietary Reference Intake (DRI) for calcium is between 1000 and 1200 mg daily. Just remember that the best source of calcium is food, such as dairy products (see table below). If you need to supplement with calcium, it is recommended that you first determine how much calcium you are getting from your daily diet, then use calcium supplements only to reach the DRI goal. For guidance on your specific calcium needs, talk to your doctor.
Low-fat yogurt1 cup (8 oz)415†
Milkshake1 cup (8 oz)362
Pizza, cheese*1/2 of 10-inch pizza355
Eggnog, nonalcoholic1 cup (8 oz)330
Low-fat yogurt with fruit1 cup (8 oz)314†
Sardines, canned1/2 cup (3-1/2 oz)303
Calcium-fortified beverages including orange juice, soy milk, and rice milk1 cup (8 oz)300
Milk (whole, low-fat, skim,
or chocolate)
1 cup (8 oz)300
Soups made with milk*1 cup150-290
Swiss cheese*1 slice (1 oz)272
Red salmon1/2 cup (3-1/2 oz)259
Ricotta*1 ounce257
Soft-serve ice milk1 cup236
Provolone*1 ounce214
Cheddar cheese*1 slice (1 oz)204
Pink salmon1/2 cup (3-1/2 oz)196
Cheese sauce, homemade*1/4 cup178
Ice cream or ice milk1 cup176
American cheese*1 slice (1 oz)174
Mozzarella*1 ounce147
Custard or pudding1/2 cup145
Mustard greens, cooked1/2 cup138
Cream pie1 piece (1/8 pie)137
Cottage cheese, creamed*1 cup (8 oz)136
*These foods have higher sodium content and may not be the best sources of daily calcium.
†Calcium content varies widely by brand.
  1. Bradley L, et al. General guidelines in medical management. In: Resnick MI, Pak CYC, eds. Urolithiasis: A Medical and Surgical Reference. Philadelphia, PA; WD Saunders and Company; 2009:chap 11.

This information is intended to augment, not replace, the advice of your doctor. If you have any questions about this content, please talk to your doctor.