Our bodies rely on a balance of minerals for optimal health, and calcium and phosphorus play especially significant roles. Calcium, as we all know, is crucial for strong bones, teeth, thyroid health, weight management and hormones. Phosphorus, though less commonly discussed, is vital for energy production, cell function, and bone health as well.

The Ideal Ratio

Calcium & phosphorus rely on each other for proper absorption and utilization in the body. To achieve maximum benefits, calcium and phosphorus need to exist within a specific ratio in our diets. The ideal ratio is generally considered to be between 1:1 and 2:1 (calcium to phosphorus). When this balance is maintained, our bodies can effectively absorb and utilize both minerals.

When the Balance Tips: The Meat and Phosphorus Problem

Modern diets, heavy in grains and meats, often lead to a disproportionate amount of phosphorus compared to calcium. Meat, poultry, some fish, sodas, and processed foods and grains are particularly high in phosphorus and low in calcium. When we consume excess phosphorus without enough calcium to counteract it, several negative consequences can occur:

  • Bone Breakdown: When high phosphorus diets exceed calcium intake, the body becomes deficient in calcium. To compensate, the parathyroid hormone triggers the breakdown of bone tissue to release our stored calcium into the bloodstream. This continuous leaching of calcium from our bones into our bloodstream (to give the body the calcium it needs) weakens the bones over time, increasing the risk of osteoporosis and disease.
  • Kidney Issues: High phosphorus levels put extra stress on the kidneys, potentially hindering their ability to filter waste properly. In people with existing kidney problems, this can be particularly dangerous. Additionally, when there's too much phosphorus and not enough calcium, the excess phosphorus can bind with calcium in the kidneys. This can lead to the formation of calcium phosphate crystals, which are a common type of kidney stone.
  • Hormonal Imbalance: The disruption of PTH and calcium levels caused by excess phosphorus can increase the risk of developing thyroid disorders. Conditions like hypothyroidism (underactive thyroid) may become more likely due to the body's struggle to maintain proper calcium balance.
  • Inflammation Connection: High levels of phosphorus in the blood can lead to the formation of calcium phosphate crystals. These crystals can deposit in soft tissues outside of the bones, such as joints and blood vessels. This deposition triggers an inflammatory response by the body, leading to pain, swelling, and potential tissue damage over time.

Getting Back in Balance

To protect your bones and overall health, it's important to be mindful of your calcium-to-phosphorus ratio. Here's how:

  • Prioritize Calcium-Rich Foods: Include plenty of dairy products (if tolerable), leafy greens and certain types of fish with bones (like sardines). Our Egg Shell Calcium is a great way to increase calcium in your diet as well. 
  • Limit Processed Foods: Processed foods often contain phosphorus additives and tend to be low in calcium.
  • Grains & Legumes: Are naturally high in phosphorus
  • Meat intake: While meat provides protein and nutrients, excessive consumption without calcium can throw the balance off. 

Remember: Balance is Key

Our bodies are remarkable in their ability to regulate themselves when given the right tools. By paying attention to the calcium-to-phosphorus ratio in your diet, you can support strong bones and a healthy body for years to come. 

Actionable Steps: 

  • Aim for a 1:1 or ideally a 2:1 calcium:phosphorus ratio in your diet. 
  • Meat, seafood, grains, legumes and processed foods are high in phosphorus and low in calcium. 
  • When eating a meal high in phosphorus make sure to have a cup of milk or dairy food for balance. 
  • Kossma's Egg Shell Calcium Powder is an easy way to get calcium in your diet; simply mix it with water or juice and you get 500 mg of pure calcium carbonate a serving! 



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