Q: You mentioned in a recent podcast that broccoli is a good source of calcium, but I’ve heard that broccoli contains a chemical that inhibits the absorption of calcium. Is this true?
A: I believe you’re thinking of oxalates, natural compounds that bind to calcium and inhibit its absorption in the digestive tract. Spinach is high in oxalates, for example, So, even though spinach contains a fair amount of calcium, little of it can be absorbed. Broccoli, on the other hand, does not contain a significant amount of oxalates so the calcium in broccoli is well absorbed. If you missed my show on diet for healthy bones, you'll find it here.