Food and Health |
| Dietary Fibre
As with vitamins, the intake of sufficient minerals is necessary in order for
our bodies to function properly, in particular with regard to the building of
bones and soft tissues, and the regulation of processes such as heartbeat, blood
clotting, nerve response, and oxygen transport.
Although dietary minerals are generally categorised into two groups i.e. major
minerals and trace minerals, the difference between them is merely the daily
amounts: at least 100mg of major minerals and less than 100mg of trace minerals.
It should be noted that they are all essential to the well being of the body so
care should be taken to intake all of them.
Below is a list of required minerals and their uses.
CALCIUM (Major Mineral)
Essential for strong, healthy bones and teeth in adults as well as children.
Good food sources: Milk, dairy products, fish with edible bones (e.g. sardines), white bread, green
leafy vegetables, nuts, seeds, beans
COPPER (Trace Mineral)
Necessary for the formation of hemoglobin together with iron and helps keep
bones, blood vessels, and nerves healthy.
Good food sources: Dried beans, nuts, offal, meat, shellfish.
IODINE (Trace Mineral)
Controls metabolism, growth and development.
Good food sources: Dairy products, eggs and seafood
IRON (Trace Mineral)
Needed for red blood cells, for the formation of haemoglobin and
maintenance of the immune system.
Good food sources: Liver, kidney, lean red meat, oily
MAGNESIUM (Major Mineral)
Regulates heart rhythm and aids blood clotting. Also needed for strong bones and teeth, energy, nerve function and muscle relaxation.
Good food sources: Wholegrain cereals,
wholemeal bread, green vegetables, nuts, seeds, seafood
PHOSPHORUS (Major Mineral)
Needed for blood clotting, bone and teeth formation, cell growth, heart
rhythm, and kidney function.
Good food sources: Meat, fish, poultry, eggs, dairy products plus
nuts, seeds and wholegrains
POTASSIUM (Major Mineral)
Works with sodium to control the balance of fluids. Conducts nerve
impulses, initiate muscle contractions and regulates heartbeat and blood
Good food sources: Fruit, vegetables,
milk, tea, coffee, meat, fish, nuts, seeds
SELENIUM (Trace Mineral)
An antioxidant that protects against harmful free radicals, helps maintain the immune
system and produces thyroid
hormones which control metabolism .
Good food sources: Meat, fish, poultry, nuts,
SODIUM (Major Mineral)
Works with potassium to regulate the balance of fluids, activates
enzymes and conduct nerve impulses.
Good food sources: Salt and foods
ZINC (Trace mineral)
Essential for growth, enzyme function, wound repair, fertility and the
Good food sources: Red meat, poultry, seafood, eggs, cheese, nuts,