Dairy products, such as milk, yogurt, cheese etc., are prime source of the mineral calcium, which is the most abundant mineral in the body, but it is also the one most likely to be inadequately supplied in the normal diet. Many people don’t consume enough calcium and as in fact older people and teenagers particularly at risk for low intake.
Calcium is vital for the usual growth and maintenance of bones and teeth, and calcium requirements must be met throughout life, which are greatest during period of growth, such as childhood, during pregnancy, and breast-feeding. Calcium deficiency over the long term can lead to osteoporosis, in which the bone deteriorates and there is an increased risk of fractures. You can meet your calcium needs by eating or drinking at least two to three portions of dairy products a day.
Some dairy products, such as cheeses and whole milk, contain significant amount of saturated fat, but it doesn’t mean you have to give up cheese, many versions of popular cheeses such as feta, cheddar, and mozzarella, are widely available.