Part 2 – The Value and Function of Each Vitamin and Mineral

Minerals needed by the bodyIn part 1 of this 2 part series, I promised you that I would summarize the value and function of each mineral, so that is exactly what I am going to do. By reading over these descriptions, you can form ideas as to which ones you or your child might be deficient in and which ones you might have a sufficient amount of.

Calcium is necessary for:

  • Bone and teeth formation
  • Blood clotting
  • Heart rhythm
  • Nerve transmission
  • Muscle growth and contraction

A Calcium deficiency can result in:

  • Muscle cramps
  • Irritability
  • Insomnia
  • Crowded teeth

Chromium is necessary for:

  • Proper blood sugar levels
  • Healthy functioning of the circulatory system

A Chromium deficiency can result in:

  • Sugar cravings
  • Kidney challenges
  • Diabetes

Copper is necessary for:

  • Bone formation
  • Hair and skin colour
  • Healing
  • Red blood cell production
  • Mental and emotional health

A Copper deficiency can result in:

  • Anemia
  • Inflammation
  • Arthritis
  • Anxiety

Iron is necessary for:

  • Growth and development of the young
  • Production of hemoglobin
  • A healthy immune system

An iron deficiency can result in:

  • Anemia – ice cravings
  • Fatigue
  • Irritability
  • Headaches
  • Shortness of breath
  • Cold intolerance
  • Susceptibility to infections

Magnesium is necessary for:

  • Energy production
  • Maintaining proper pH balance
  • Keeping normal body temperature
  • Preventing birth defects
  • Metabolizing other vitamins and minerals

A Magnesium deficiency can result in:

  • Depression and/or anxiety
  • Dizziness
  • Muscle weakness and twitching
  • PMS
  • Kidney or gall stones
  • Cravings for chocolate
  • Excessive body odour

Manganese is necessary for:

  • Protein and fat metabolism
  • Healthy nervous system
  • Healthy immunity
  • Energy production
  • Bone and cartilage growth
  • Lubrication of the joints

A Manganese deficiency can result in:

  • Cracks in the side of the mouth
  • Painful, creaking or clicking joints
  • Bursitis, tendonitis
  • Prone to injuries
  • Weak knees and muscles

Potassium is necessary for:

  • Healthy nervous system
  • Normal functioning of the heart (blood pressure, heart rhythm), muscles, kidneys and blood
  • Water balance

A Potassium deficiency can result in:

  • Always being thirsty
  • Muscular weakness and fatigue
  • Swelling of ankles

Selenium is necessary for:

  • Protecting the immune system and cells
  • Regulating the thyroid hormone in metabolizing fat
  • Healthy pancreatic function

A Selenium deficiency can result in:

  • Dry or thin hair
  • Frequent infection
  • Dandruff

Zinc is necessary for:

  • Healthy prostate function
  • Growth of reproductive organs
  • Preventing acne
  • Protein synthesis and collagen formation
  • Fast wound healing
  • Taste and smell acuity
  • Carbohydrate and protein digestion

A Zinc deficiency can result in:

  • White spots on nails
  • Acne
  • Thinning hair
  • Stretch marks
  • Poor dream recall

When there are deficiencies, nutritionists believe that taking a multi-mineral is ideal because all minerals work in tandem with one another. Please see a nutritionist if you require more information on your individual vitamin or mineral deficiencies and requirements.

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Until next time,

Meredith

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