Vitamins and minerals are inorganic micronutrients which are essential to our body but in smaller amounts than protein, carbohydrate, and fat. These substances are inorganic, it means they are not produced by plants or animals, but a large amount of them is contained in the soil and water.

Essential Minerals

They are extracted by the root system of plants. We get essential minerals by eating the plants, or the meat of animals eating these plants.

Essential minerals don’t give us energy but they play an important role in releasing energy from, protein, carbohydrate, and fat. These elements necessary for our body in very small quantities, but are extremely necessary for its normal functioning.

Find your juicer blender combo to get all the essential minerals you need easily.

There are 16 essential minerals:

  1. phosphorus
  2. calcium
  3. potassium
  4. sodium
  5. sulfur
  6. chloride
  7. iron
  8. magnesium
  9. zinc
  10. manganese
  11. copper
  12. iodine
  13. selenium
  14. chromium
  15. molybdenum
  16. fluoride

Minerals help to:

  • maintain blood pressure
  • maintain electrolyte and fluid balance
  • maintain healthy bones
  • make new cells
  • deliver oxygen to cells
  • contribute to normal nerve and muscle functioning

The majority of minerals are easy to find in common foods, some specific minerals are found in certain foods. It is very easy to cook tasty smoothies and other dishes containing essential minerals with the help of a blender food processor.

The Essential Minerals

Minerals are divided into two main types, depending on how much the body needs:

  • macronutrients (our body needs more than 200 mg per day – calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, and sodium)
  • microelement (our body needs less than 200 mg per day – chromium, cobalt, copper, iron, selenium, silicon, zinc, and others.)

Calcium

Calcium

Your bones consist of a crystal called hydroxyapatite, that is composed of phosphate and calcium. Calcium is necessary for strong bones and teeth formation and maintenance and strength, blood clotting and transmission of nerve impulses. But calcium is necessary for muscles. Calcium deficiency can lead to muscle cramps and heart failure.

Lack of Calcium also causes osteoporosis (bones become porous and break easily).

To prevent it, eat foods from the milk group – cheese, milk, cottage cheese, and yogurt. People with lactose intolerance may try foods which are fortified with calcium such as soy milk, calcium-fortified juices, cabbage, potatoes, sesame seeds, leafy green vegetables, and cereals, they also contain a lot of calcium.

Potassium overdose is almost impossible because the excess is easily excreted by healthy kidneys.

How much calcium per day you need:

  • Adults 19-50 – 1,000 mg
  • Women over 51 – 1,200 mg
  • Men age 51-70 – 1,000 mg
  • Men over 71 – 1,200 mg
  • Dosages in sports – 1500 mg

Don’t get more calcium daily than this:

  • 2,500 mg – adults at the age of 50 and younger
  • 2,000 mg – adults over 51

Iron

Iron is a part of myoglobin in muscle cells and hemoglobin in red blood cells. Iron plays an important role in carrying oxygen from your lungs to cells throughout all the body. It promotes proper growth, DNA synthesis, metabolism, immunity, and wounds healing.

Iron deficiency causes weakness, shortness of breath, dry skin, fatigue, pale lips, skin, palms, tongue, and mouth, and anemia.

Iron is found in the following products:

  • meat (beef, pork, lamb)
  • fish
  • poultry
  • eggs
  • greens
  • legumes
  • dried fruits

Enriched with iron cereals and bread are also good sources of this mineral. Eating a vitamin C and an iron source at the same time doubles the amount of iron absorbed. This way, put a piece of tomato on your turkey sandwich or drink orange juice with eggs for better iron availability.

But remember that iron overdose leads to the antioxidant system of the body inhibition, development of heart disease and malignant tumors.

  • Daily Dose – 10 mg
  • Dosage in sports – 35 mg
  • Upper level – 200 mg

Potassium and Sodium

The cell membrane has sodium outside and potassium inside. Keep a balance between these 2 minerals and drink enough water to keep blood pressure at a good level. It also helps your muscles and nerves to work well. Sodium is the main extracellular ion that regulates the water-salt metabolism, and it is also involved in the activation of muscle contractions.

Potassium regulates cell and tissue metabolism. The normal functioning of the heart muscle is impossible without potassium. It is found in meat, milk, cereals, vegetables, fruits, and legumes.

Lack of sodium salts can cause muscle weakness, dehydration, apathy, headaches and slowing down of all vital processes in the body. Sodium is found in most products such as sea fish, bread, cheese, and vegetables, but in insignificant quantities, so we compensate its lack with the help of common salt.

The daily sodium intake is below 2.3 grams, (Dosage in sports is 4g), and potassium – 4,700 milligrams per day.

Excess sodium leads to swelling face and legs, high blood pressure, strokes, heart attacks, and impaired kidney function.

Zinc and Copper

Copper helps to heal wounds, provides cells with energy and boosts your nervous and immune systems. It is a part of enzymes with redox activity, participates in the metabolism of iron and the synthesis of hemoglobin.

Lack of copper causes anemia, impaired formation of the cardiovascular system and skeleton, poor absorption of iron, skin problems, increased cholesterol, weakened immunity, hair loss or graying, increased susceptibility to bronchial asthma.

Copper is found in nuts, seafood, seeds, wheat bran cereals, and whole grains. Copper is essential when it comes to helping your body process iron.

How copper much you need per day:

  • Adults – 900 mcg
  • Pregnant women – 1,000 mcg
  • Breastfeeding women – 1,300 mcg
  • Dosages in sport – 2.5 mg

Adults shouldn’t get it more than 8,000 mcg daily.

Zinc is required for the testosterone production, it is a part of insulin and involved in the processes of hematopoiesis, spermatogenesis, and healing of wounds and burns, it is also a part of a variety of enzymes.

Zinc is found in oysters, pumpkin seeds, blueberries, mushrooms, oatmeal, green peas, cocoa, soy, crabs, egg yolk, meat, corn, and nuts.

Lack of Zinc leads to decreased appetite, anemia, dysplasia, poor wound healing and long-term tissue repair (after injuries), reduced testosterone levels, weight loss, visual acuity.

  • Dosages in sports – 20 mg.
  • Upper level allowed – 25 mg.

Don’t forget to get the right balance of zinc and copper, as an excess amount of one mineral causes a deficiency of the other one. Women need 6.8 mg of zinc per day and men – 9.4 mg. Zinc also boosts your immune system, and it promotes your cells proper dividing and a sense of taste and smell.

Magnesium

Peas

Most of the magnesium is in your muscle and bones and other fluids and tissues. It is contained in all vital organs and takes part in more than 300 biochemical processes in our body. Magnesium contributes to protein formation, cells replication, and energy production.

Together with calcium, it enables you to contract your muscles. It promotes good work of your blood pressure and makes your heart function better.

It is also necessary to maintain the desired level of potassium, calcium, and sodium.

A lack of this mineral leads to increased risk of heart disease developing, sleep disturbance, fatigue, memory loss, dizziness, headache, and depression. Magnesium is found in green vegetables, peas, beans, watermelon, legumes, whole grains, nuts, meat, milk, chocolate.

Women should get 265 mg of magnesium daily and men – 350 mg. Dosage in sports is 600 mg.

Phosphorus

Included in the DNA molecules, RNA and ATP, therefore, is vital. Every cell needs phosphorus for normal functioning to interact with other minerals and to help your body create energy and maintain proper acid-base balance. But 85% is located in your bones. It is necessary to get 580 mg daily.

It is easy for those eating dairy products and meat, but vegans should take supplements with this mineral and eat whole grain products.

A lack of phosphorus leads to impaired growth, bone deformation, and rickets. Phosphorus directly depend on calcium concentration. Even high dosages of phosphorus are not terrible if the concentration of calcium remains higher than that of phosphorus.

  • Daily Dose – 800 mg
  • Dosage in sports – 2000 mg

Choline

Milk

The main feature of choline is creating new cells. Great amounts of choline found in liver, milk, eggs, peanuts

How much choline you need per day:

  • Men – 550 mg
  • Women – 425 mg
  • Pregnant women – 450 mg
  • Breastfeeding women – 550 mg

Don’t get it more than 3,500 milligrams daily.

Chromium

Chromium regulates the level of glucose in the blood, enhances the action of insulin, speeds the elimination of many toxins from the body up. Potatoes, broccoli, meats, fish, liver, corn, milk, and poultry are rich in chromium. It is useful for diabetics as it helps control blood sugar level and doesn’t have an upper limit for adults.

A lack of this mineral leads to decreased glucose sensitivity. Chromium overdose causes slowed tissue regeneration and risk of diabetes.

How much chromium you need daily:

  • Men at the age of 19-50 – 35 mcg
  • Women at the age of 19-50 – 25 mcg
  • Pregnant women – 30 mcg
  • Breastfeeding women – 45 mcg
  • Men over 51 – 30 mcg
  • Women over age 51 – 20 mcg
  • Dosage in sports – 200 mcg.
  • Upper level allowed – 2000 mcg

Sulfur

Sulfur is included in many amino acids, essential for the synthesis of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates. Sulfur plays an important role in the formation of cartilage and other tissues. It is found in protein foods: meat, fish, milk, eggs, poultry, cheese, and legumes.

Iodine

Iodine controls the metabolism and plays an important role in the functioning of the thyroid gland and hormones formation: thyroxine and triiodothyronine (T4 and T3). It is necessary for mitochondrial respiration, makes the brain work actively, strengthens the immune system, and reduces cholesterol in the blood.

A lack of mineral slows metabolism down, reduces immunity, and leads to memory degradation. Iodine overdose inhibits the antioxidant system of the body and precedes the development of malignant tumors. It is found in sea fish, cod liver, seaweed, oysters, seaweed, iodized salt.

  • Daily rate – 150 mcg.
  • Dosages in sports – 200 mcg
  • Upper level allowed – 600 mcg.

The lack of any essential mineral leads to serious problems with the vital activity of the body. There are also many other minerals that are important for the body, but their properties, dosages and other information are not fully understood.

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About the Author

Joshua Howard

I'm a healthy living blogger who loves to help people who care about having an eco-friendly home environment and a healthy lifestyle. With proper nutrition I helped my brother to cure gastritis and my father to normalize his blood pressure.

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