Vitamins and Minerals
Why Supplement Minerals?
Minerals are life sustaining elements.
Are minerals important? Two-time Nobel Prize winner Linus Pauling thought so. He stated "You can trace every sickness, every disease, every ailment to mineral deficiency."
Some of the individual functions of minerals in the body are:
1. Structural: bones, teeth, ligaments
2. Solutes and electrolytes in the blood
3. Enzyme actions
4. Energy production from food breakdown
5. Nerve transmission
6. Muscle action
Mineral deficiency in those areas will cause problems to occur. The body is capable of adapting just like a branch that has been removed from a tree. It's leaves will look okay for a while but in a small amount of time they will wither up and fall off. The body can operate for long periods of time with deficiencies. Premature aging and cell breakdown will eventually be the result. Without minerals, vitamins may have little or no effect. Minerals are catalysts (triggers for thousands of essential enzyme reactions in the body). No trigger, no reaction. Without enzyme reactions, digestion of protein, carbohydrates, and fats is impaired and energy production from digested food is impaired. Minerals trigger the vitamins and enzymes to act; that means digestion.
To find out the 5 reasons for mineral deficiency in our foods read further.
FIVE REASONS FOR MINERAL DEFICIENCY:
1. SOIL DEPLETION
In the past 200 years, the U.S. and Canada have lost as much as 75% of its topsoil, according to various researchers. To replace one inch of topsoil may take anywhere from 200-1000 years, depending on climate. (Utah Teachers Resource Books)
The standard NPK (nitrogen-phosphorus-potassium) fertilizer farmers commonly use is able to restore the soil enough to grow fruits and vegetables which are healthy looking, but may be entirely lacking in trace minerals
The second contributor to mineral deficiency within the population is obviously, diet. Even if our produce did contain abundant minerals, less than 4% of the population eats sufficient fruits and vegetables to account for minimal RDAs. To further compound matters, mass amounts of processed food, excess protein, and refined sugars require most of our mineral stores in order to digest them since they are devoid of nutrients. Enzyme activity is completely dependent on minerals like zinc, copper, chromium, selenium, cobalt and many others. No minerals - no enzyme action. In addition, pasteurized/homogenized milk and dairy products, alcohol, and drugs inhibit the absorption of these minerals, further depleting reserves. So it is cyclical: refined foods inhibit mineral absorption, which then are not themselves efficiently digested because of diminished enzyme activity.
3. MUCOID PLAQUE
The standard indigestible American/UK diet packs layer upon layer of plaque onto the inner lining of the colon. One of the prime functions of the colon is to reabsorb water, in order to prevent dehydration. Plaque prevents such a reclamation, and the result is that we lose both water and minerals that normally should be reabsorbed.
The fourth reason for inadequate minerals in the body is a phenomenon known as secondary deficiency. It has been proven that an excess of one mineral may directly cause a deficiency of another because minerals compete for absorption. Secondary deficiency means that an excess of one mineral causes a deficiency of another. (Kidd)
For example, iron, copper, and zinc are competitive in this way. Copper is necessary for the conversion of iron to haemoglobin, but if there is excess zinc, less iron will be available for conversion. This may cause a secondary deficiency of iron, which can manifest itself as iron deficiency anaemia. All due simply to excess zinc! Researchers have found that these secondary deficiencies caused by excess of one mineral are almost always due to an imbalance of mineral supplements, since the quantities contained in food are so small.
A fourth, and increasingly serious reason for mineral deficiency in humans is overuse of prescription drugs. It has been known since the 1950s that antibiotics interfere with uptake of minerals, specifically zinc, chromium, and calcium. (The Plague Makers) Tylenol, Advil, Motrin, and aspirin have the same inhibitive effect on mineral absorption. Moreover, when the body has to try and metabolize these drugs to clear the system its own mineral stores are heavily drawn upon. Such a waste of energy is used to metabolize laxatives, diuretics, chemotherapy drugs, and NSAIDs, such as Tylenol, Advil, and aspirin out of the body. This is one of the most basic mechanisms in drug-induced immune-suppression: minerals are essential for normal immune function.
So the question then becomes: which mineral supplements are the most absorbable and the most usable, and therefore effective in the smallest amounts possible?
The National Academy of Sciences and the National Osteoporosis Foundation recommend daily calcium intakes of 1000-1200 mg/day for adult men and women.
Note: dosage and solubility can influence the bioavailability of calcium from calcium supplements, the timing of intake and meal conditions also are important. Calcium from supplements appears to be more efficiently absorbed when consumed in divided doses, each containing less than 200 mg of elemental calcium. The NIH Consensus Conference recommends consuming calcium supplements between meals to increase calcium bioavailability.
For certain individuals who cannot meet their calcium needs from foods, calcium supplements are warranted. A number of factors influence the choice of calcium preparation. Individuals who need calcium supplements should choose one that contains a relatively high percentage of elemental calcium by weight, disintegrates readily, provides a form of calcium that is bioavailable and inexpensive and is free of toxicants. In general, absorption of calcium is most efficient when the supplement is consumed in doses of 200 mg or less. Intake of calcium supplements with vitamin D should be limited because of the risk for vitamin D toxicity.
HealthSmart Nutrition's Coral Cal-Min contains the trace minerals the are required by the body in an easily absorbable form. The minerals have been micronized so that they will be quickly absorbed. Many people have a low stomach acid due to age or medications. Usually an acid environment is necessary in the stomach for mineral absorption due to the large particle size of the minerals. The acid reacts with the minerals, breaks them down and makes them more absorbable. When a mineral has been micronized this requirement of breakdown by acid is reduced and the minerals are absorbed much more quickly. For example: one of my clients who has MS had extreme muscle cramping, so much so that Drs, were unable to straighten out his limbs to perform an MRI. He discovered that within 30 minutes of taking 1/2 a teaspoon of Coral Cal-Min mixed into a glass of water that the cramping had ceased and his muscles were relaxed. This effect appeared to last for about 3 hours then he would have to take another dose. This effect was repeated time and time again. The result that he was able to have a lot more mobility and his health greatly improved. He had had no similar effect with other mineral supplements - it was only when he started using Coral Cal-Min that his symptoms were reduced.