6 Essential Minerals Made Easy for Optimal Health

January 29, 2008 by  
Filed under Education

mineral

The importance of vitamins and minerals to our health is recognised by all people who are conscious of their well-being. Confusion surrounds what is actually required, from not taking enough in our diet to overloading our bodies with the wrong supplements and including other questions such as how much or when these supplements should be taken.

Are Mineral Supplements Necessary?

Many questions are asked by the health conscious. Are we getting enough vitamins and minerals from our diet? Should we take supplements? Should these supplements be herbs, pills, powders, capsules and or liquid colloidal minerals? How do we know if a certain supplement or combination of additives is necessary? How can we be certain of optimal health?

Research has proven that the human body can produce certain vitamins, however it cannot manufacture minerals. Therefore it is essential that we receive these minerals either from our diet or from supplementation in order to have our body functioning correctly. Minerals are vital to maintain proper nerve responses, contractions of the muscular system, to assist in the balance of bodily fluids, to regulate electrolyte and hormone balance as well as maintaining our metabolism. Found in most bodily tissues, minerals are vital for the majority of most physiological functions.

Obviously, the most proficient way to obtain our mineral requirement is by eating a wide variety of healthy foods from each of the five main food groups every day. These groups include grains and legumes; meats, eggs and fish; dairy; fruit and vegetables; sugars and oils.

Unfortunately, the stress and ever increasing pace of today’s lifestyle makes it difficult for the majority of people to partake daily in these nourishing foods which ideally would be organic unprocessed ingredients and prepared immediately before eating.

Instead, we often opt for fast foods, reheated simple meals of foods either frozen or coming from tins and time saving dinners that require little or no preparation. Convenience has led to the reduction in natural vitamin and mineral intake through well balanced healthy nutrition. As well as this, many foods are now grown in areas where the soil has been depleted by years of intensive farming. It seems little wonder that it is becoming more difficult each day to achieve a healthy balanced diet.

With the added factors of stress, cigarettes, alcohol as well as a diet lacking in the vital nutrients, excessive burden is placed on our bodies further depleting its mineral stores and therefore additional supplements are more often necessary.

Which Minerals are necessary?

Minerals come in two types, firstly trace minerals which are present in the diet, although only in small amounts and include Iodine, selenium, copper, manganese, fluoride, chromium, nickel, silicon, cobalt, boron.

Secondly, major minerals are ones that the body requires in larger amounts and include calcium, magnesium, sodium, potassium, phosphorus, chloride, sulfur.

Types of Supplements:

Supplementary forms may generally be of two types, firstly organic mineral compounds which are more easily absorbed and include amino acid chelates, ascorbates, asparates, carbonates, citrates, fumarates, gluconates, gycinates, lactates, orotates and picolinates.

Secondly, inorganic forms which include chlorides, hydroxides, oxides, phosphates and sulfates.

In mineral supplements marketed as colloidal and chelated, escorting substances such as amino acids are attached to the mineral to allow for more proficient absorption. These supplements carry a much higher price tag, but it is not conclusive that the more expensive price gives a better product. The decision is entirely up to you, the consumer to decide.

At the end of the day, supplementing with any form of vitamin or mineral should be discussed with your medical practitioner. Individual bodies require individual treatment as the requirements depend on any other medications being taken, each diet, each lifestyle, each one’s genetics, each one’s metabolism and each one’s age.

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