Everyone’s always talking about which vitamins are most important for health, but what about minerals?
There are so many important minerals beyond the obvious two—iron and calcium— that help your body function efficiently and thrive.
For example, getting adequate amounts of minerals in your diet is tied to energy levels, healthy bones, and proper thyroid function.
The bad news is most people think that if you’re eating a variety of fresh vegetables every single day, you’re likely already getting a lot in your diet.
But a large-scale study on the nutrient value of foods conducted between 1930 and 1980 and published in the British Food Journal found that in 20 vegetables the average calcium content in this time had declined 19%, Iron 22%, and potassium 14%. Vitamins A and C, niacin, riboflavin, thiamine, magnesium, zinc and copper also showed a reduction in this time. On top of this, produce is increasingly being shipped thousands of miles and sitting in storage or on shelves for weeks, meaning even greater degradation of the nutrient profile.
So which minerals should you be paying attention to, specifically? Here are five to start with.
The 5 Most Important Minerals
Yes, I’m starting with the most obvious. We talk about iron a lot because it’s really that important: your body needs it to carry oxygen throughout the body. When you’re not getting enough iron, you’re tired and weak (and that is so not who you are!).
We all know calcium is necessary for strong bones, and it’s especially important for kids. Research shows that getting enough nutrients early in life helps individuals achieve maximum peak bone mass by age 18, which decreases the likelihood of osteoporosis later in life.
Magnesium is crucial for both bone health and energy. Not getting enough can lead to serious fatigue. Conversely, there’s some evidence it may help you sleep (and hey, getting a good night’s sleep definitely leads to more daytime energy). Plus, here’s a really great benefit: research has shown magnesium is associated with reduced PMS symptoms.
Zinc has a few key jobs. Your brain needs it for cognition and memory, and it also helps your body produce the important thyroid hormone T3. Oysters are one of the best sources of zinc, and they also contain plenty of selenium, which aids in thyroid hormone synthesis.
Potassium helps regulate blood pressure, so it’s super important for heart health, and it also plays an important role in your nervous system’s operation. And while bananas are a great source, they’re far from the only one: greens, sweet potatoes, and salmon all contain more.
How to Get More Important Minerals in Your Diet
While each mineral is found in certain foods, soil depletion has had an effect on overall mineral deficiency.
If you’re having trouble getting enough of a certain mineral through your diet, you should try supplementing (try our natural Fulvic Concentrate made with plant based nutrients from plant matter growing 65 million years ago. With 32 Servings per 500ml Bottle !).