Dr. Linus Pauling, the late, two-time Noble Prize winner, said, "You can trace every
sickness, every disease, and every ailment to a mineral deficiency." Yet most people
think about vitamins, amino acids, and essential fats before even giving a second
thought to the essentiality of minerals.
Minerals play almost innumerable roles within your body. Aside from being a part
of nearly every enzymatic process in the body, minerals are required for the manufacture
of and are part of cellular membranes and connective tissue, including muscles,
tendons, ligaments, cartilage, bones, and soft tissues such as veins, arteries,
and brain tissue.
Some minerals also function as electrolytes (calcium, magnesium, potassium, sodium,
sulfate, and phosphate), acting as buffering agents that protect the body's tissue
from excess acidity, which more often comes from our own poor lifestyle choices.
The problem is that too many of us may actually be deficient in numerous minerals
due to the fact that these minerals just aren't found in high enough quantities
in the foods that we consume. Researchers from the University of Texas published
a study in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition that showed that the
nutrients in fruits and vegetables (including minerals calcium, potassium, and iron)
have diminished quite extensively since 1950.
We live in a time were technology has allowed us to tinker with the genetic components
of fruits and vegetables and in the process create huge strawberries that deliver
very little in taste to broccoli that contains half the calcium and magnesium of
its older cousins.
* Calcium: is considered the king of minerals because calcium is the most abundant
mineral in the human body (teeth and bones contain 99% of the body's calcium). When
one thinks of calcium they think of bone health; however, calcium is also essential
to proper muscle contraction-especially where you heart is concerned, cellular communication
through nerve transmission, and the release of hormones. Research shows that proper
calcium intake (supplementation) can make a modest improvement in lowering your
risk of osteoporosis and fractures.
* Magnesium: Research published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition
shows that more than half (68%) of Americans are deficient in magnesium, because
they don't consume the governments recommended daily intake of 420 mg. Aside from
the fact that magnesium is required for calcium absorption and bone integrity, this
mineral also helps maintain proper blood sugar levels and is required in more than
300 biochemical reactions-involved in every step the body uses to produce energy.