Fill up on calcium for Osteoporosis Awareness Month |

Fill up on calcium for Osteoporosis Awareness Month

There’s more to milk than the mustache.Foods high in calcium, especially dairy foods, help build and maintain strong bones at all ages. Numerous studies have identified calcium intake and dairy foods as a key strategy for attaining peak bone mass and for preventing and treating osteoporosis and reducing fracture risk. In addition to calcium, other nutrients found in dairy foods such as protein, phosphorus, magnesium, and Vitamin D also support bone health. The National Dairy Council recommends getting three servings of dairy a day. A serving of dairy is one cup of milk, 1.5 ounces of cheese, or one 8-ounce carton of yogurt.Yogurt parfait with crunchy berry banana granolaAn 8-ounce serving of yogurt provides 400 mg of calcium, about a third of the daily recommended value. If you don’t have time to make the granola, store-bought granola will work just fine.8 oz. lowfat or fat-free vanilla yogurt (or other flavor, if preferred)Fresh or dried berries (optional)For the granola:4 cups uncooked rolled oats 12 cup wheat germ 12 cup sunflower seeds1 cup chopped raw almonds1 cup raw pistachio nut meats2 teaspoons cinnamon13 cup honey13 cup molasses23 cup maple syrup23 cup canola oil1 teaspoon vanilla extract1 teaspoon almond extract3 cups sweetened dried banana chips2 cups raisins2 cups dried cranberriesPreheat oven to 350 F. Lightly coat two rimmed baking sheets with cooking spray.In a large bowl, combine oats, wheat germ, sunflower seeds, almonds, pistachio nuts and cinnamon. Toss well to mix.In a small bowl or 2-cup glass measuring cup, whisk together the honey, molasses, maple syrup, canola oil and vanilla and almond extracts. Add to the dry ingredients and mix well until thoroughly combined and everything is evenly coated.Evenly spread half of the granola on each baking sheet. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, until toasted and fragrant, lightly stirring the granola every 15 minutes. Remove the granola from the oven and let stand until completely cool.Transfer both baking sheets of granola to a large bowl. Add the banana chips, raisins and cranberries and mix well. Store in an airtight container. Makes about 18 cups.Layer 12 cup granola and yogurt in a parfait glass and top with fresh berries, if desired.

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