Pros: Economical. Vit. D for better absorption. Don't have to take with meals
Cons: can cause constipation
At my annual check up earlier this year with a new doctor, she reminded me that I should be taking not only a calcium supplement, but also supplements for Vitamin D and Magnesium. Rather than take so many supplements I went looking for one with all of them. I found Costco Kirkland's brand had a formulation that contained Calcium, Vitamin D, and Magnesium, as well as Zinc.
A bottle of 300 caplets costs $10.69 at Costco. Recommended dosage is 2 caplets daily, which provides 500 mgs. of Calcium, or 50 % of recommended daily value for an adult, age 19-50 years. (That goes up to 1200 mgs. for 50 and over). I'm not a big milk drinker, but I do consume either cottage cheese or yogurt on a daily basis, so I'm not looking for a calcium supplement that provides 100%. They do point out on the label that Calcium intake over 2000 mg. is not generally seen as beneficial (excess calcium can lead to kidney stones).
In addition, two caplets provide the following:
Vitamin D - 800 IU (200 %)
Vitamin B6 - 10 mg (500%)
Magnesium - 80 mg (20%)
Zinc - 10 mg (66%)
Copper - 1 mg (50%)
Manganese - 1 mg (50%)
Boron - 1 mg (not established)
I chose a product Calcium Citrate because that is what my mom recommended to me years ago. I did a little research to understand the difference between this form of calcium and the other popular form, Calcium Carbonate (it's the same form of Calcium you get in Tums). According to http://www.healthcastle.com, Calcium Citrate is the more readily absorbed form of Calcium because it is acidic based and does not require extra stomach acid to be absorbed. It can be taken any time of day, even on an empty stomach. Calcium Carbonate is alkaline based, and thus is better absorbed right after meals or with a glass of acidic juice such as orange juice. However, Calcium Carbonate generally provides more elemental calcium than Calcium Citrate, eliminating the need to take as many tablets.
The Kirkland caplets are fairly large, almost 7/8 inches long, but I have no problem taking and in fact, I am able to swallow them with water at the same time I take my large Glucosamine caplet.
I am very pleased with this Kirkland Calcium Caplet. Having Vitamin D in it gives me peace of mind in knowing that it's being better absorbed. I'm glad to see it has magnesium as well, as my doctor says this trace element is also now seen as critical in the preventative management of osteoporosis.
The only issue I note with this supplement is it can make me a bit constipated if I'm not careful to drink enough water or get enough fiber in my diet. So I would caution people to start slowly, maybe taking it once a day to judge how it affects your body.
The price is also right, especially when compared to the brand name Citracal Calcium supplement. A bottle of that with 240 caplets costs $14.99 at Costco.
5 stars for this economical Kirkland supplement.