Types of Minerals in Food

Types of Minerals in Food

Written By: Gargi Roy Published In: ROOT Created Date: 2015-08-19 Hits: 744

The human body is like a machine that runs because of certain fuels that we obviously get from our food. You must've heard about the body needing vitamins and minerals to survive and how important they are blah blah.

But doesn't really register on the mind does it? Vitamins maybe, but when we say minerals we think iron, magnesium, manganese and other stuff we learnt in chemistry that’s found in the earth. But as shocking as it may seem, these minerals are absolutely essential for our survival as well and can be divided roughly into two categories based on how much the body needs them –

  • Macro minerals

  • Trace minerals

Macro minerals are the major minerals that are needed in much larger quantities in comparison to the trace minerals that are needed in much smaller quantities, which cannot even be determined by scientists with all their cool labs and R&D departments! Talk about the magic of the human body.

Macro minerals are – Sodium, Sulfur, Calcium, Potassium, Magnesium, Phosphorous and chloride. These guys are the main men when it comes to minerals needed for a proper fluid balance, nerve transmissions, muscle contractions, protein synthesis, and I'm sure you're well aware of the benefits of calcium and the role it plays in making your bones and teeth healthy but it also plays a key role in blood pressure regulation and nerve system functioning! Make sure that these minerals are included in the diet and look up the foods rich in each, eg. Table salt is the biggest source of sodium.

Trace minerals – Iron is one of the trace minerals in theory although its needed in much higher amounts as compared to the others. Zinc, iodine, manganese, copper and fluoride are some of the other minerals that fall under this category and are needed in minimal quantities by the body. Lucky for us we don't need to start chewing on copper and iron bars to stay alive or we'd need a lot more calcium for the damaged teeth then!

Deficiencies in trace minerals depend upon the soil of that country. The food isn't going to have minerals that the soil doesn’t have in the first place so deficiencies could vary from country to country.