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Why Essential Minerals Are Just That

By Genevieve Smith

Often when one thinks of nutrition, they consider their intake of carbs, protein and fats. Keeping those in balance is indeed lesson one in health. But dig in deeper and you’ll learn how important it is to eat a variety of foods in order to get all the benefits of nutrition. Striving to eat the rainbow every day is the easiest way to ensure you consume your daily intake of vitamins and minerals, as well as other health-boosting compounds. Let’s go right to an advanced health lesson and learn about two essential minerals crucial to your daily functioning.

Potassium

The mineral is not organically produced in any capacity by your body, so you must consume it daily to facilitate these vital functions. Luckily, this is easy enough because potassium is present in many commonly enjoyed foods. While potassium deficiencies are rare, keep in mind that eating too much is also dangerous. Potassium-rich sources include:

  • Various fruits - This includes kiwi, oranges, bananas, apricots, and pineapples
  • Veggies - Such as leafy greens, carrots, tomatoes, and potatoes
  • Lean meats - Beef, chicken and fish
  • Whole grains
  • Beans and nuts

This mineral and electrolyte assists in the functioning of electrical impulses in your body. By conducting these impulses, potassium aids in:

  • The process of blood pressure
  • Hydration and water balance
  • Muscle contractions
  • Nerve impulses
  • Digestion
  • The rhythm of the heart
  • Your internal pH balance

Magnesium

Magnesium enters food through the soil it is grown in, and can be affected by pesticide use. In general, organic foods will have higher levels of magnesium than their non-organic counterparts, simply due to the health of the soil. Foods rich in magnesium include:

  • Whole grains
  • Leafy green vegetables - Especially spinach and Swiss chard
  • Nuts and seeds - Particularly pumpkin seeds, almonds and cashews
  • Avocados
  • Dark chocolate


The needs for this essential mineral are abundant in the body. Magnesium is present in bones, teeth, and red blood cells. Participating in more than 300 chemical reactions in the body, magnesium is needed for the following, and more:

  • Glucose and insulin metabolism
  • Contractions of the heart muscle
  • Maintaining bone density
  • Serving as a building block to DNA

Learning about the significance of minerals can lead to a more balanced diet, and proves the importance of variety. Have fun with your food and pursue whole foods with excitement and curiosity. While we have gone over two essential minerals with major roles in the body, in total there are 16 minerals in this category. The remaining major minerals are sodium, chloride, calcium, phosphorus, sulfur and the trace minerals (just as essential but needed in smaller amounts!), which are iron, zinc, iodine, selenium, copper, manganese, fluoride, chromium, molybdenum. They are key to wellness and long-term healthcare. May you dig into each one and learn something to love about them!

To learn more about your health and wellness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Kingwood, Tex.

 

 

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