The Trace Minerals (Microminerals) (Found in “trace” amounts.)
Iron, Zinc, Iodine, Selenium, Copper, Manganese, Fluoride, Chromium, Molybdenum
**Acute toxicities of many minerals cause
ABD pain, N/V & diarrhea)
Mineral
Name
Iron
Zinc
Iodine
Selenium
Copper
Chief Function
Deficiency Symptoms
Part of the protein
hemoglobin, which carries
oxygen in the blood; Part of
the protein myoglobin in
muscles, which makes oxygen
available for muscle
contraction; necessary for
energy metabolism
Anemia; weakness,
fatigue, H/A, impaired
work performance;
impaired immunity; pale
skin, nail beds, mucous
membranes, and palm
creases concave nails;
inability to regulate body
temperature; pica
Growth retardation;
delayed sexual maturation,
impaired immune
function, hair loss, eyes
and skin lesions, loss of
appetite
Part of insulin and many
enzymes; involved in making
genetic material and proteins,
immune reactions, transport of
vitamin A, taste perception
wound healing, the making of
sperm, and normal fetal
development
A compartment of the thyroid
hormones that help to regulate
growth, development, and
metabolic rate
A component of the thyroid
hormones that help to regulate
growth, development, and
metabolic rate
Underactive thyroid gland,
goiter, mental and
physical retardation
(cretinism)
Associated with Keshan
disease (heart enlargement &
insufficiency; fibrous tissue
replaces the muscle tissue that
normally composes the
middle layer of the walls of
the heart.)
Toxicity Symptoms
**
GI distress; iron
overload: infections,
fatigue, joint pain, skin
pigmentation, organ
damage
Protein-containing foods;
red meats, fish, shellfish,
poultry, whole grains
Underactive thyroid
gland, elevated TSH,
goiter
Iodized salt; seafood;
plants grown in iodinerich soil and animals fed
those plants
Seafoods, organ meats,
other meats, whole
grains, and vegetables
(depending on soil
content)
Nail and hair
brittleness and loss;
fatigue, irritability, and
nervous system
disorders, skin rash
and garlic breath odor
Anemia, bone
abnormalities
Rare
Susceptibility to tooth
decay
Chromium
Helps form bones and teeth;
confers decay resistance on
teeth
Enhances insulin action
Nervous system
disorders
Fluorosis (pitting and
discoloration of teeth)
Diabetes-like condition
None Reported
Molybdenum
Cofactor for several enzymes
Unknown
None Reported
Fluoride
Red meats, fish, poultry,
shellfish, eggs, legumes,
dried fruits
Loss of appetite,
impaired immunity,
low HDL, copper and
iron deficiencies
Helps form hemoglobin; part
of several enzymes
Cofactor for several enzymes
Manganese
Significant Sources
Liver damage
Information copied from:
Understanding Nutrition, 10 ed. Wadsworth, 2005. Whitney, Ellie & Rolfes, Sharon Rady. Page 459-460.
Seafood, nuts, legumes,
whole grains, seeds
Nuts, whole grains, leafy
vegetables, tea
Drinking water if
fluoride containing or
fluoridated, tea, seafood
Meats (liver), whole
grains, brewer’s yeast
Legumes, cereals, organ
meats
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The Major Minerals (Found in “major” amounts