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Chapter 10. Major Minerals

Summary of Major Minerals

Table 10.7 A Summary of the  Major Minerals

Micronutrient Sources Recommended Intakes for adults Major functions Deficiency diseases and symptoms Groups at risk for deficiency Toxicity UL
Calcium Yogurt, cheese, sardines, milk, orange juice, turnip 1,000 mg/day Component of mineralized bone, provides structure and microarchitecture Increased risk of osteoporosis Postmenopausal women, those who are lactose intolerant, or vegan Kidney stones 2,500 mg
Phosphorus Salmon, yogurt, turkey, chicken, beef, lentils 700 mg/day Structural component of bones, cell membrane, DNA and RNA, and ATP Bone loss, weak bones Older adults, alcoholics None 3,000 mg
Magnesium Whole grains and legumes, almonds, cashews, hazelnuts, beets, collards, and kelp 420 mg/day Component of mineralized bone, ATP synthesis and utilization, carbohydrate, lipid, protein, RNA, and DNA synthesis Tremor, muscle spasms, loss of appetite, nausea Alcoholics, individuals with kidney and gastrointestinal disease Nausea, vomiting, low blood pressure 350 mg/day
Sulfur Protein foods None specified Structure of some vitamins and amino acids, acid-base balance None when protein needs are met None None ND
Sodium Processed foods, table salt, pork, chicken < 2,300 mg/day; ideally 1,500 mg/day Major positive extracellular ion, nerve transmission, muscle contraction, fluid balance Muscle cramps People consuming too much water, excessive sweating, those with vomiting or diarrhea High blood pressure 2,300 mg/day
Potassium Fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains, milk 4700 mg/day Major positive intracellular ion, nerve transmission, muscle contraction, fluid balance Irregular heartbeat, muscle cramps People consuming diets high in processed meats, those with vomiting or diarrhea Abnormal heartbeat ND
Chloride Table salt, processed foods <3600 mg/day; ideally 2300 mg/day Major negative extracellular ion, fluid balance Unlikely none None 3,600 mg/day