The basic building blocks of the body, mineras are crucial to our existence. So are mineral supplements crucial then too?
Well mineral supplements help to support numerous crucial functions in our bodies which help keep us in good health. We use over 80 minerals to function efficiently. Although we should be able to get them all from the food we eat, a combination of nutrient depleted plants and soils, and poor diet, means that most of us don't get all the minerals we need - hence the need for some of us to take mineral supplements.
The result can be a variety of health conditions ranging from energy loss, premature aging, and diminished senses, through to degenerative diseases like osteoporosis, heart disease, and cancer.
The most important mineral supplements are calcium, sodium, and iron. Calcium is critical for both bone building and retaining strong bones as we get older. Dairy products, such as milk and cheese, are good sources of calcium. While it is important to get enough calcium between the teen years and the early thirties, when bone building is at its peak, calcium also important for women to help prevent osteoporosis after menopause.
Sodium is also crucial, but because it is contained in almost all foods, many people get too much sodium. This can lead to problems such as high blood pressure. Iron is necessary to make haemoglobin in the blood, and is found not only in meat, but also in wholegrain cereals and flours, leafy green vegetables, blackstrap molasses, pulses such as lentils and kidney beans, and some dried fruits. Iron supplements are also available, and are used by many women who menstruate.