Mineral Nutrients or Dietary Mineral                            Macronutrients
These are the naturally occurring inorganic                     Elements which are present in large amounts
nutrients in the food and soil essential for the                in plant tissues are called macronutrients. They
proper functioning of the plant and animal                      are in excess of 10 mmole per kg of dry
body.                                                           matter. e.g. Carbon, hydrogen, oxygen,
                                                                nitrogen, phosphorous, sulphur, potassium,
Minerals are among the essential elements                       calcium and magnesium.
required by the body including carbohydrates,
proteins, fats, vitamins and water.                             Micronutrients or Trace Elements
These are two types, such as Macronutrients                     Elements which are present in small amounts,
and Micronutrients.                                             i.e. less than 10 mmole per kg of dry matter
                                                                are called micronutrients. e.g. Iron,
                                                                manganese, copper, molybdenum, zinc,
                                                                copper, boron, chlorine and nickel.
                           Minerals and their Function in the Human body
       Mineral         Major Food Source                  Functions                   Deficiency Diseases
    Calcium          milk, dairy products,       Muscle contraction, nerve       Tetany & rickets
    Ca               green leafy vegetables,     action, blood clotting and
                     fish                        the formation of bone.
    Chlorine         Salted food and             Anion/cation balance and        Loss of appetite muscle
    Cl               seafood.                    gastric acid formation.         cramps.
    Magnesium        meat, whole grains,         Formation of bone,              Irregularity of metabolism,
    Mg               nuts, legumes, apricots,    formation of coenzymes in       Fatigue, poor memory,
                     bananas, chocolate and      cell respiration.               muscle twitching and rapid
                     green vegetable                                             heartbeat.
    Phosphorus       Cheese, eggs, pea nuts      Bone and tooth formation,       Tetany & rickets
    P                and most foods.             energy transfer from foods,
                                                 DNA, RNA and ATP
    Potassium        meat, chocolate,            Muscle contraction, nerve       Nervous disorder, poor
    K                oranges, bananas,           action, active transport.       muscles leading to paralysis.
                     peanuts, beans,
                     potatoes, spinach
    Selenium         nuts, fish, tuna, meat,     Helps to prevent damage to      Poor heart function, mental
    Se               chicken, mustard,           cells and aids in the           retardation
                     mushrooms, barley,          functioning of the thyroid
                     cheese, garlic, tofu,       gland. It is an antioxidant
                     seeds.                      for the body.
    Sodium           Any salted food, meat,      Muscle contraction, nerve       Fatigue, Nervous, depression,
    Na               eggs and milk.              action and active transport.    muscular cramps, PH dis-
                                         Micronutrients (Trace Elements)
    Iron             Liver, kidney, red          Helps the blood and             Anemia and low immunity.
    Fe               meat, cocoa powder          muscles carry oxygen to
                     and water-cress, green      the body.
    Fluorine         salt water fish (salmon), Helps to make bones and           Weak teeth and bones.
    F                tea, sea food, meat,        teeth stronger. Improves
                     liver, beans, fluoridated resistance to cavities.