Falls and Older Adults

Frequently Asked Questions

10. How much calcium and vitamin D do I need to keep my bones strong?


Women over age 50 should consume 1,200 mg of calcium daily. Men between the ages of 51 and 70 should consume 1,000 mg of calcium a day, and men over 70 should consume 1,200 mg per day. This can be done by eating calcium-rich foods and taking calcium supplements.

Good dietary sources of calcium include

  • dairy products such as low-fat milk, yogurt, and cheese
  • orange juice, cereals, and other foods fortified with calcium
  • dark green, leafy vegetables such as broccoli, collard greens, and bok choy
  • sardines, salmon with bones, soybeans, tofu, and nuts such as almonds.

Vitamin D

People ages 51 to 70 should consume at least 600 international units (IU) of vitamin D daily. People over age 70 should have 800 IUs daily.

Good dietary sources of vitamin D include

  • herring
  • sardines
  • salmon
  • tuna
  • liver
  • eggs
  • fortified milk and foods.

Vitamin D supplements may also be needed. Talk with your doctor about how much vitamin D you need. Taking too much may be harmful.