Mighty Minerals

Spilled MineralsThe human body requires small amounts of inorganic compounds for metabolism and to form bones and teeth. These inorganic compounds are called minerals and they are most often obtained from the foods we eat. Meat, eggs, vegetables and fruit are excellent sources of minerals. There are five specific minerals critical to maintaining good health. Perhaps you are interested in natural herbs that have healing properties as well. Check out how to become a nutritionist to read about natural healing herbs in addition to the mighty minerals listed below.


Iron is important for healthy blood. It is used by the body to regenerate hemoglobin. A deficiency of iron causes anemia. A person needs 5 to 20 mg of iron a day. Liver, lean meats, egg yolks, dried beans, green vegetables and fruit are excellent sources of iron.


Copper is also used in the formation of red blood cells and connective tissues. Many metabolic reactions can not take place with out copper and the production of neurotransmitters, norepinephrine and dopamine would be incomplete. Shellfish, liver, nuts, seeds, legumes and cocoa are good sources of copper which is absorbed into the body through the intestines. Skin changes, a decrease in white blood count, intolerance to glucose, anemia, a decrease in skin and hair pigmentation and mental retardation in young people can be caused from copper deficiency. Wilson's disease is the result of high levels of copper in serum. This metabolic error allows large amounst of copper to accumulate in the liver, brain, cornea, or kidney.


Over 100 enzymes are stimulated by the mineral zinc. The production of insulin, the making of sperm, immune system strength and DNA synthesis are dependent upon adequate zinc absorption. Wounds heal faster with the help of zinc. Taking more than 150 mg of zinc can cause a copper deficiency, weaken the body's immune response and decrease high-density lipoprotein (HDL). Zinc should not be taken with antibiotics because it inhibits antibiotic absorption. Wait two hours after taking any antibiotic before taking zinc.