Minerals: The Foundation of Function

The foundation of all life is minerals. Minerals provide a rich substance for the life of plants, which then give us, humans, as well as animals, insects, and most life forms, life. When the body is “returned to the dust” what remains are different forms of calcium, iron, potassium, magnesium, sodium and silica. But all minerals have intrinsic value in the health of our bodies and our minds.

Minerals help initiate many actions in the body, from nerve propagation, to heart rhythm, to tissue fluid balance. We need minerals, such as calcium for healthy connective tissue, skin and joints, as well as bones and teeth. That means, if you are deficient, those tissues could be predisposed to untimely breakdown, slow healing, or inflammation.

Most people feel they get adequate calcium and other minerals in their diet. Many forms of calcium either in the diet or in supplement form are very difficult for the body to breakdown. If there is a digestive challenge, it is even more difficult. If it is an unusable form, you may be subject to calcium excess challenges, such as bone spurs, arthritis, kidney or gall stones and other problems. Quality calcium (and other minerals) is critical in order for the body to utilize it properly.

Potassium, as another example, is needed for healthy mucous membranes. Mucous membranes are involved with absorption and secretion. They include nostrils, lips, mouth, ears, eyelids, genital area and others. Potassium is also needed for healthy metabolism, nervous system functioning, and muscle contraction. Potassium and calcium are critical for healthy heart function.

Magnesium is important for the muscles, especially in relaxation, in bone and is important for many metabolic functions. Iodine is needed for thyroid health and other metabolic hormones. Even sodium (in natural form) is needed for metabolism, purification, normal function of muscles and nerves and healthy blood pressure.

Minerals are also critical to the functioning of every organ that secretes a hormone – all members of the Endocrine System. For example, you need iodine for the thyroid, chromium for the pancreas, sodium and copper for the adrenals, manganese for the pituitary and zinc for the ovaries and gonads. There are many more minerals needed by the body for hundreds of other functions. The point of all this, is that if you want your organs, tissues, and various functions to behave properly, you have to give them the fuel that they need – Minerals! Of course, you also need good vitamins, good fats, good proteins, good carbs, water, etc. to help them along!

For instance, you need healthy fats to pull the minerals into your tissues. So when you eat high mineral foods, such as green leafy veggies and other green veggies, don’t forget the butter!

Your body only works as well as the foundational building blocks provided. Make sure your diet is rich in a variety of minerals by making sure you get them in a food supplement form which contains the whole gamut of minerals, and not just a few!

© 2014 Holly A. Carling, O.M.D., L.Ac., Ph.D.

Dr. Holly Carling

Dr. Holly Carling

Dr. Holly Carling is a Doctor of Oriental Medicine, Licensed Acupuncturist, Doctor of Naturopathy, Clinical Nutritionist and Master Herbologist with nearly four decades of experience. Dr. Carling is a “Health Detective,” she looks beyond your symptom picture and investigates WHY you are experiencing your symptoms in the first place. Dr. Carling considers herself a “professional student” – she has attended more than 600 post-secondary education courses related to health and healing. Dr. Carling gives lectures here in the U.S. and internationally and has been noted as the “Doctor’s Doctor”. When other healthcare practitioners hit a roadblock when treating their patients nutritionally, Dr. Carling is who they call. Dr. Carling is currently accepting new patients and offers natural health care services and whole food nutritional supplements in her Coeur d’ Alene clinic.

Medical/Health Disclaimer:

The information provided in this article or podcast should not be construed as personal medical advice or instruction. No action should be taken based solely on the contents of this article or podcast. Readers/listeners should consult appropriate health professionals on any matter relating to their health and well-being. The information and opinions provided here are believed to be accurate and sound, based on the best judgment available to the author, but readers/listeners who fail to consult appropriate health authorities assume the risk of any injuries.

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