Minerals and Healthy Living: Importance of Minerals in the Body
Every human body needs a wide range of essential minerals to perform optimally. They can be classified into two broad categories:
- Macro minerals
- Micro minerals
Your body needs both types of minerals. However, macro minerals are required in larger quantities.
Your body can only perform optimally if you provide it with the following range of macro minerals; sodium, sulfur, chloride, magnesium, potassium, phosphorous and calcium.
Sodium, Potassium and chloride are required for effective fluid balance, muscle contraction as well as nerve transmission, whereas Calcium and phosphorous play important roles in the formation of strong teeth and bones. Sulfur, on the other hands, is required in the formation of protein molecules and collagen.
Iron, Molybdenum, Zinc, Chromium, Iodine, fluoride, selenium, manganese and copper are some of the essential minerals that your body needs.
They can be obtained from organ meat, fortified cereals, red meat, leafy green vegetables, poultry, dried fruits, egg yolk, legumes and whole grains.
They can also be obtained from sea food, iodized salt, dairy products, drinking water, unrefined foods, cheeses, brewer’s yeast and milk, among other sources. Other micro minerals needed by your body include; nickel, cobalt, silicon as well as vanadium.
Both types of minerals can be obtained from whole foods, supplements or a combination of the two sources.
Who needs mineral supplements?
Generally, whole foods are the best source of minerals. However, there are cases where you may need to get the minerals from whole foods as well as supplements. Mineral supplements ought to be consumed by expectant women, women who intend to get pregnant within a few months and adults above the age of 50 years.
You should also consume supplements if you don’t eat well every day, if you’ve recently undergone surgery on the digestive tract that has affected its digestive and absorption capabilities, if you are a vegetarian who consumes a limited range of food types, if you suffer from a condition that significantly affects your body’s ability to absorb or utilize essential minerals or if you’re forced to endure heavy bleeding during those times of the month. Those with diverticulitis also hinders nutrient absorption, those suffering from this condition should be consuming a multi mineral supplement daily.
Our bodies are continuously trying to stay in an alkaline state, the blood needs to be at a pH 7 for optimal health. If our diets are poor, our bodies will become acidic, the only way for the body to restore a pH 7 in the blood is to take minerals out of the bones to restore alkalinity. This is why many around the world experience bone loss, cause the body is in a acidic state. This is the number one reason why everybody should be consuming minerals on a daily basis.