Minerals

Cobalt is a trace mineral with a recommended RDA of 3mcg to 4mcg and we would suffer greatly without it. This trace element aides in the formation of hemoglobin, is a necessary cofactor in the making of the thyroid hormone and it is an essential part of vitamin B12.

People with cobalt deficiencies may see slow growth or development to the point of anemia or retardation.

Some of the foods that may contain cobalt are: red meat, clams, liver, oysters, milk and all green leafy vegetables.

We strongly recommend eating organic whenever possible and cobalt is one of the reasons why. Before NPK was promoted as the preferred fertilizer by the Dept. of Agriculture, cobalt was put back into the soil by farmers that regularly rotated crops, spread manure on the land and mulched. Organic farmers are the most often found users of these practices today because corporate farms are looking at quantity rather than quality.

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Potassium is so important to your health it can be found in every cell in your body and in the fluid surrounding those cells. Your potassium level is important in helping regulate your blood pressure, muscle contractions and heart and kidney functions. Potassium is also in an ionized form and it’s important as an electrolyte for nerve impulse transmission and it helps the body maintain the proper fluid level.

“An elderly friend had potassium levels so low she died. The doctor told her son, who lived in another town, that this woman was prescribed a diuretic that drained potassium plus she had a magnesium deficiency and as a result her heart and lungs failed.” – Jerry McCoy

Potassium and salt have an inverse relationship with each other. As sodium increases, potassium decreases. This can partially explain why high blood pressure is on the rise in people eating the typical western diet. Many, in the western world, eat too much salt in their diets which is pushing our potassium levels down and blood pressure up in many cases.

Many foods are rich in potassium but we often have deficiencies because we aren’t eating enough of the right foods and aren’t replacing the potassium lost through urination and perspiration quickly enough.

Muscle damage, weak reflexes, general weakness, slow irregular heartbeat, continuous thirst, dry skin, acne, constipation or high blood pressure (hypertension) may be signs of a potassium deficiency.

You can add more potassium to your diet without taking supplements just by switching the foods you eat. Processed foods that have been cooked or even heated have lost some of their potassium. Natural orange juice is a good source of potassium but orange juice that has been dehydrated then reconstituted has less potassium and pasteurized juice has less potassium than orange juice fresh from the grove. Organic green leafy vegetables, tomatoes, water cress, whole grains, halibut, potatoes and sweet potatoes are all good sources of potassium but not the only food sources for this important mineral. You obviously have to cook some of these foods but you will still benefit from the nutrients they contain.

It’s important to remember that organic and fresh foods usually provide more nutrients in the food and the type of cooking or processing also affects how much of the original nutrients are lost.

You may lower your blood pressure and feel better by eating more bananas, avocados, parsnips, turnips, apricots and yogurt. Reduce the amount of canned foods you consume, reduce the number of salty snacks you eat and lower your salt intake from other food sources while increasing the fresh fruits and vegetables and your body will thank you with better health.

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The average American diet is so chromium deficient researchers estimate that 2 out of 3 Americans are prehypoglycemic, hypoglycemic or diabetic. Many Americans eat diets that are heavy in both sugar and refined flour. Whole grains contain chromium and 98% of it is destroyed when the flour we consume in the product we eat is refined. Adult onset diabetes is on the rise in America and you shouldn’t be surprised now that you know we are eating foods that are deficient of chromium.

Researchers Walter Mertz and Kenneth Swartz identified chromium as the active component of the “glucose tolerance factor (GTF)” in 1957.

Chromium deficiency symptoms can cause glucose intolerance in diabetics, arteriosclerosis and appear as type II diabetes.

Chromium is essential for muscle growth, fatty acid metabolism, normal glucose metabolism and insulin metabolism. According to recent studies, chromium also helps raise the HDL cholesterol (good) in your body.

Chromium picolinate has been studied many times in both humans and pigs. These studies have shown that taking chromium picolinate helped the test subjects lose fat and gain muscle with men and elderly subjects seeing the most dramatic benefit from this supplement.

The results of these studies shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone since we’ve already stated two thirds of the population is chromium deficient. The result from the pig studies shouldn’t be a surprise either since we shared with you in an article titled Is Malnutrition Causing Your Obesity? that discussed how the minerals in our soil have been depleted and aren’t being replaced by fertilizers.

The bottom line on chromium is that it’s an important part of your health because your blood, arteries, glucose metabolism, insulin metabolism, lean muscle mass and weight loss are all affected by the level of chromium you have in your body.

Chromium has been used to treat elevated cholesterol levels, triglyceride levels, hypoglycemia, diabetes, acne and in weight loss.

Chromium is often found in the following foods: shell fish, clams, brewers yeast, whole grains, meat and chicken.

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While many people know calcium is one of the 11 nutrients that are important for bone and tooth formation, many don’t know calcium is also important in muscle growth and contraction, heart rhythm, blood clotting, nerve tranquilization and nerve transmission. This means calcium is part of the nutrients you need for a healthy heart, healthy nails, teeth, bones, skin and soft tissue.

In my article on magnesium, I mention it is important in converting vitamin D into a biologically usable form the body can use to make use of calcium and the article on boron shows it helps postmenopausal women retain more calcium during urination. The interdependency of the minerals in the body is starting to show itself so a deficiency in one mineral will adversely affect many functions within your body. Because the symptom you feel and share with your medical professional may not point directly at a certain mineral, they may miss the root cause of the problem unless they have a very good understanding of nutrition.

It’s true that about 99 percent of the calcium in your body is used in your bones and teeth but that 1 percent used by the rest of your body is just as important because it is used for nerve impulses and muscle contractions that help you stay alive and move about. We are talking about your muscles, heart kidneys and other organs. Your body is constantly making new cells and calcium helps maintain the RNA and DNA structures. Your DNA is your blueprint of who you are so the calcium in you is helping you stay you.

Deficiencies in calcium and magnesium have been linked to high blood pressure through research so maintaining recommended levels of these minerals is vital to your health. Low calcium levels may be indicated by muscle cramps, tooth decay, arm/leg numbness, heart palpitations, nervousness and insomnia too. Proper levels of calcium have also shown to help reduce problems associated with PMS and in protecting against colon cancer.

There are many calcium supplements on the market and some of them aren’t worth the money spent on them. Calcium needs stomach acids to break it down so it can be absorbed before reaching the small intestine so taking an antacid that has calcium is a waste because none of the calcium gets absorbed. The best sources of calcium are derived from plants and are more absorbable but these are more expensive than the carbonate or dolomite derived forms. Calcium derived from carbonate and dolomite are poor sources of calcium and any calcium supplement that is inexpensive and the calcium source isn’t specified is often this cheap source your body cannot readily break down and absorb. (Calcium carbonate and dolomite are rocks.) Your body can absorb the calcium from plants more readily than from rock because the plant based will be more in line with your metabolic needs. The plant based calcium is also more likely to be free of metals such as aluminum and lead that your body cannot use.

You can naturally add calcium to your diet by eating organic dark leafy vegetables, sesame seeds, cheese, salmon and sardines and these are the same foods that also provide boron.

Calcium is so important to your health it is often used to reduce the problems caused by arthritis, bone pain, rheumatism, osteoporosis, backaches, heart palpitations, finger tremors, foot/leg cramps, insomnia, nervousness, menstrual cramps, premenstrual tension, menopause problems and obesity.

Calcium is a major mineral that you need to live a quality life but too much calcium can put stress on the kidneys and you may have kidney stones form as the body tries to flush the excess calcium. Your level of activity will determine where in the recommended guidelines your calcium needs fall and common sense should tell you that taking calcium or any supplement at regular intervals throughout the day is better that a massive dose at one time.

Food or liquid supplements make this easier than pills.

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Boron’s presence is needed for the body to make several hormones associated with bone metabolism and for you to experience normal growth. Two of the best known hormones that boron helps the body keep at normally balanced levels are estrogen and testosterone.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture conducted a study of post menopausal women and boron supplements. The group that was taking 3 milligrams of boron a day saw a reduction of the amount of calcium they lost through urination dropped by 40% and the amount of magnesium lost through urination dropped by 33% in just 8 days.

Some of the symptoms of a boron deficiency might be insomnia, muscle cramps, bone pain, backache, PMS and menstrual cramps and menopause problems. There are other possible problems that could cause some of these symptoms but boron is one mineral that may help.

Since boron has been shown to help you retain calcium and magnesium it will help in your battle against arthritis, fatigue, migraine headaches, nervousness, fluid retention, depression, hot flashes and backaches.

You can naturally add boron to your diet by eating organic dark leafy vegetables, sesame seeds, cheese, salmon and sardines.

The quality of your life WILL suffer if you are deficient in this mineral.

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