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Have you ever wondered about minerals; what they are and how they help? You're not alone! Many of us understand vitamins, but don't know much about minerals, but hopefully we'll be able to help you out with your understanding of minerals.

What are Minerals?

Minerals are nutrients we find in food that perform vital functions in our body. Most of our mineral intake comes from a balanced diet although it’s also possible to get some through supplements.

Common minerals include:

  • Calcium
  • Iron
  • Magnesium
  • Sodium
  • Zinc


There’s about 700g of phosphorus in our bodies, which is mostly held in our bones although about 20% of the total goes into forming our cell membranes and DNA. It can be found in fish, pulses and eggs.


Our bodies have roughly 120g of sulphur and it’s an important substance for proper cell functioning, as well as finding use in cartilage. It can be found in meat, garlic and onions.


Our bodies contain a small amount of iron at only 4g, and most of it is used in the production of red blood cells. Good foods for iron include spinach, fish and meat.


We have about 100g of sodium in our bodies and most can be found in the blood, helping to keep the pH balance. It can be found in salt, cheese and processed meat.


Our bodies carry as little as 3g of zinc and it can be found in the prostate gland in men and the skeleton in both sexes, although it’s also important for the immune system. Zinc naturally occurs in protein foods such as seafood, eggs and lean meat.


We have roughly 25g of magnesium in our bodies and that can be found mostly in the bones, with the rest involved in muscle control. You can find magnesium in cereals, nuts and leafy vegetables.


As much as 250g of potassium can be found in our bodies and it works with magnesium to aid muscle contraction. Its function is vital for the heart so an unbalance can lead to an irregular heartbeat. It’s available in spinach, oranges and bananas.


Our bodies contain around 20mg of iodine. Most of this can be found in the thyroid gland where it’s used in the production of the hormone thyroxine, which plays a role in regulating the metabolic rate. Iodine can be found in algae, veg, drinking water and saltwater fish.


We have just over 100g of chlorine in our body and it’s used in the manufacture of bodily fluids such as stomach acid. It can be found in milk, meat and eggs.


Our bodies contain over a kg of calcium which can almost all be found in bones. The strength in our bones comes from a combination of calcium and phosphorous. Calcium can be found in many foods and Vitamin D is also useful to help us absorb it.


We have as little as 20mg of fluorine in our body, which we mostly get from products that contain fluoride. Its main use is in tooth enamel and it can be found in cereals, grapes and potatoes.

What Happens if You Don’t Get Enough Minerals?

If you don’t get enough minerals it’s called a mineral deficiency, and this can lead to a number of different health problems, including nutrient imbalances, weak bones, fatigue, muscle weakness, anaemia, cramps, cognitive issues, increased risk off chronic diseases, and a compromised immune system.

If you want to find out more about having a balanced diet and getting the right minerals, speak to our personal training team or sign up for some 1-2-1 sessions and they will work out a diet plan for you.