Calcium, iron, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, zinc. But also cobalt, chromium, fluorine, iodine, among the main ones. These are the fundamental minerals for a good functioning of the organism. One of them shortage it causes considerable imbalances in the various systems and organs: in fact, by compromising the correct functioning of even just one part, the foundations of the whole organism are undermined. Let's find out more.
> Symptoms of mineral deficiency
> The causes of mineral deficiency
> Lack of minerals and nutrition
Symptoms of mineral deficiency
The symptoms of mineral deficiency are easily recognizable and, in general, can be summarized in:
- excessive fatigue,
- changes in heartbeat,
- disorders of the nervous system;
- changes in skin, hair, nails;
- widespread skeletal and muscular malaise,
- non-harmonious bone development.
In the most severe cases of mineral deficiency one begins to perceive an alteration of the mucous membranes, anemia, inappetence or digestive disorders, weakness in the arms and legs.
Thus begins a losing weight or gaining too much weight, you feel tingling in your hands and feet, you lose your balance. Breathing becomes short and labored, symptoms such as headaches, depression, memory loss take over.
Often the liver is also affected, glucose metabolism and blood cholesterol level are altered.
The causes of mineral deficiency
The causes of a lack of one or more minerals can be many. They range from genetic predisposition to absorption, to pathologies that can hinder it, bad combination with other minerals, demineralizing diets, excessive sweating, seniority, more serious pathologies.
Take, for example, the fact of a form of anemia which can be caused by an altered ratio between iron and copper; while asthenia can result from an altered ratio between calcium and potassium or between sodium and magnesium.
To ascertain whether a demineralization of the organism is in progress, a useful examination is the mineralogram, that is an examination that is carried out on a sample of 1,5 grams of hair and that allows to know the minerals present in the cells.
There are many factors that can determine a greater need for minerals than normal: eintense physical exercise, stress, extreme heat or cold, pregnancy, various diseases, the intake of certain drugs, the excess of coffee, alcohol or smoke, exposure to air pollutants, the presence of nitrates, heavy metals or pesticides in food.
Mineral deficiency and nutrition
In the human body, mineral salts are present for about 6% of body weight. Mineral salts are constantly eliminated from the body, through urine, feces and sweat, it is therefore essential to integrate them daily. Based on the daily requirement, mineral salts are divided into macro, micro and oil elements.
Water is one of the sources of minerals along with food. The recommended mineral requirement in the diet varies according to weight, sex, age and type of activity.
Some deficiencies can be effectively overcome through food. Whole grains are, for example, a rather complete source of minerals such as iron, copper, manganese, and contain small amounts of calcium, selenium, zinc. Dairy products contain a high amount of calcium and phosphorus, while vegetables have a good potassium content.
Some beverages, such as tea, provide a significant percentage of fluoride. Sodium and potassium are minerals that compete with each other, as are calcium and magnesium.
Normally, a balanced and varied diet is sufficient for the organism to acquire the necessary quantity of mineral salts.
However, in specific cases, due to certain pathologies or in the case of people who practice sports in an intense way, it may be necessary to acquire the necessary minerals through supplements.
How to avoid the lack of mineral salts?
Other articles on minerals:
> Mineral salts: 3 supplements to make at home
> Mineral salts after sport