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Calcium is probably best known for strengthening bones and teeth. In fact, most of the calcium in our bodies is stored in the bones and teeth. As bones undergo their regular process of breakdown and remodeling, calcium helps build new bone.

Getting enough calcium is important for keeping your bones strong throughout your lifetime, but especially during childhood, while the bones are still growing. It's also essential during the senior years, when bones start to break down faster than they can rebuild. Older bones become more brittle and easily fractured -- a condition called osteoporosis.