Soy milk, made from soya beans, is generally lower in calcium than cow’s milk. Therefore, it is not considered a good source of calcium, said Ms Ruth Ho, a dietitian at Alexandra Hospital.
Similarly, other soy-based products such as soy yoghurt and tofu are generally lower in calcium.
However, they can be good sources of calcium if they are fortified with the mineral.
Calcium is vital for maintaining bone health and reducing the risk of osteoporosis as one ages. The daily recommended amount of calcium for an adult below 50 is 800mg.
Adolescents and those above 50 should increase their calcium intake to 1,000mg a day.
Purchase soya milk or soy-based products that are enriched or fortified with calcium.
This means that they have had calcium in the form of calcium phosphate or calcium carbonate added into them. Look out for these ingredients on the food packaging.
Vitamin D, which is made in bodies when one is exposed to ultraviolet rays of the sun, is equally important as it helps bodies absorb calcium.