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94% of Americans don’t eat enough fruits and vegetables to meet minimum mineral RDAs. Even the trace minerals in organic foods are depleted.

As far back as 1936, the 74th Congress stated that, “99% of the American people are deficient in minerals, and a marked deficiency in any one of the more important minerals actually results in disease,” in a well publicized report entitled Document 264 from the Department of Agriculture.

That same report stated that, “Virtually all soils in the United States are mineral deficient.” From 1940 to 1991, trace minerals in fruits and vegetables have declined by up to 76%, according to the Journal of Complimentary Medicine in 2001.

Unfortunately, most multi-mineral supplements don’t absorb well enough to make a dent in reversing these mineral deficiencies.

Vitamins depend on minerals to function. As such a large percentage of us are mineral deficient, it’s no wonder that the vitamins we ingest often don’t deliver the vitality we expect.

ARTICLE – AT – A – GLANCE

Mineral deficiency has been traced to be a cause of all disease, according to the 2 time Nobel Prize winner Dr. Linus Pauling. Less than four percent of Americans eat sufficient fruits and vegetables to account for minimal mineral requirements, according to the RDAs. The main causes of mineral deficiency are poor digestion, depleted soils, malnutrition, and malabsorption.

Minerals are responsible for thousands of bio-chemical processes in the body. As many minerals work synergistically, a deficiency in just one mineral can have a devastating impact on the body.

To reverse and prevent deficiency, please take a bio-available multi-mineral supplement that is manufactured by a company that has their good absorption research available to the public.

One company that supplies quality mineral amino chelates to many mineral supplement companies, including LifeSpa’s Essential Minerals, is Albion Minerals. Look for their seal on mineral products before purchasing.

Mineral Deficiencies in the U.S. Population

Albion Laboratories, who is the world leader in patents on supplemental minerals, published a conservative measure of mineral deficiencies in the US:

Magnesium: 75% mineral deficiency copper pot image
Iron: 58%
Copper: 81%
Manganese: 50%
Chromium: 50%
Zinc: 67%

Even Organic Foods are Depleted

Organic foods do help, but when it comes to minerals the difference between conventional and organic foods is negligible. This is a slow process of rebuilding the mineral content of the soil, even on organic farms, and is a great reason to support organic foods and your local farmer’s markets.

1000s of Processes in the Body Rely On Minerals

Minerals are responsible for thousands of bio-chemical processes in the body. Many of the minerals work synergistically so a deficiency in just one mineral can have a devastating impact on the body.

Don’t worry too much about vitamins. Unlike minerals, you can still get plenty of them from fresh fruits and vegetables, the problem is that we need minerals to activate vitamins.

Magnesium for example is involved in over 300 chemical processes that activate enzymes. It is also integral in the production of ATP, or energy, in the body. Zinc is a co-factor in over 70 enzymatic processes and is responsible for skin, immunity, growth, musculo-skeletal issues and tissue repair.

Each of the following systems in the body utilize minerals. Research shows that imbalances or deficiencies in mineral nutrition can affect these systems(1):

1. Immune System Copper (Cu), Zinc (Zn), Iron (Fe) and Selenium (Se)
2. Energy Production Magnesium (Mg), Phosphorus (P) and Manganese (Mn)
3. Hormone System Iron (Fe), Manganese (Mn), Zinc (Zn), Copper (Cu), Magnesium (Mg) and Potassium (K)
4. Vitamin Production Cobalt (Co)
5. Blood Production Copper (Cu) and Iron (Fe)
6. Enzyme Systems Zinc (Zn), Copper (Cu), Potassium (K), Manganese (Mn), Magnesium (Mg), Iron (Fe), Calcium (Ca) and Molybdenum (Mo)
7. Skeletal System Calcium (Ca), Magnesium (Mg), Zinc (Zn), Manganese (Mn), Boron (B) and Phosphorus (P)

Most Mineral Supplements Don’t Work

Digesting and assimilating a mineral is no easy task. Basically, minerals found in the ground are inorganic. Minerals found in animals, humans and plants are organic. The body has to chemically convert an inorganic mineral into an organic mineral before it can be utilized. This naturally happens in the digestive tract. Plant based minerals will naturally attach to a specific protein or amino acid and render the inorganic into an organic mineral chelate. This process is called chelation.

However, there are many obstacles to this process that make it difficult for the body to chelate enough minerals in an environment of deficiency.

Obstacles to Mineral Absorption:

1. Chemicals: Chelation and mineral absorption in the gut is blocked by medications and chemicals such as Antibiotics, NSAID’s, Laxatives, Diuretics, pain Killers and chemo therapy drugs.
2. Fiber: Many minerals also attach to dietary fiber and are digested and eliminated by the fiber before the mineral has a chance to chelate or be absorbed into the blood.
3. Mineral Size: Many minerals that enter the digestive tract are too large to be absorbed, such as most commercial minerals like colloidal minerals.
4. Poor Digestion: If the stomach is too weak to break down the proteins in wheat or dairy, it is likely not strong enough to break down proteins into appropriate amino acids for chelating onto a mineral. Lack of chelated minerals in the gut act as irritants to the gut wall and damage the villi, which are essential to absorbing such minerals.
5. Incorrect Formulas: In many commercial multi-mineral supplements an excess of one mineral may absorb much quicker than another, thus causing a deficiency of the mineral that is absorbed more slowly.
6. Absorption Rates: Most commercial mineral supplements absorb only at a rate of 10-25%.
7. Not True Chelates: Some products on the market purported to be chelates are merely complexed mixtures of proteins and minerals that lose stability during digestion and consequently have lower bio availability.

What to Look For in a Quality Multi-Mineral Supplementmineral deficiency multivitamin image

Though I have never been a big fan of multi-vitamin/mineral supplements, I realize that we just don’t get the minerals we need from our diet.

I have been a student of mineral absorption rates for years, always trying to find the best minerals available. Rarely will a company actually publish their absorption rates. I can only assume that this is because they are so low. Albion Mineral laboratories have over 100 patents on their Mineral Amino Chelates and with an absorption rate of 32%, which is very high.

The bioavailability of mineral supplements is perhaps the most important consideration in selecting a formula. The body transports minerals across the intestinal walls by chelating or bonding them to amino acids. For greater bioavailability special processing is needed to create a stable bond between the mineral and amino acids. Albion Laboratories uses a patented process of binding the mineral to an amino acid called glycine which transports them easily across the intestinal wall.

Look for the Albion Seal when you buy a multi-mineral supplement, or make sure you checked the website of your multi-mineral supplement for published research on their mineral absorption rates.