Mineral deficiencies in the body can go undetected for quite long because the symptoms they give are similar to symptoms of other conditions. Being able to interpret the early symptoms of zinc, iodine and magnesium deficiencies, all of which essential minerals, gives you the advantage of starting timely treatment and thus reduce your risk of further health complications.
When it comes to treatment, it’s important to have in mind that the best source to get these minerals from is FOOD. No other synthetic supplement is as effective as those found in whole food.
Below, you’ll find the common deficiency symptoms of each of these 3 minerals as well as the best food sources you can find them in.
Although generally undervalued, zinc is vital for many body functions. In fact, proper cell function, efficient immune response, strong bones, healthy eyes, hair and skin, as well as proper liver, kidney, prostate, and pancreas function all depend on sufficient levels of zinc in the body. Plus, zinc takes part in more than 300 enzymatic processes.
Needless to mention, zinc deficiency will compromise the function of all these segments, thus affecting your overall health. These are the most common signs of zinc deficiency:
- Chronic infection
- Hair loss
- Weight loss
- Brittle thin nails or nails with white spots
- High cholesterol
- Delayed wound healing
- Rough skin or rashes
- Mental fatigue
- Poor sense of taste or smell
- Poor night vision
- Prostate issues as well as low sperm count
- Stunted growth
Foods high in zinc
- Nuts (soaked): almonds, cashews, walnuts, pecans, and Brazil nuts
- Seeds (soaked): pumpkin, sesame, and sunflower
Iodine is essential for proper thyroid function. It also plays great part in regulation of blood pressure, moods, blood sugar, cardiac rhythms, and cancer prevention and treatment. In addition, this mineral packs various antiseptic, antiviral, anti-fungal, and anti-parasitic properties, thus being great for prevention and treatment of infectious diseases.
However, the highest content of iodine is in the thyroid, salivary glands, brain, cerebrospinal fluid, gastric mucosa, breasts, ovaries, and the eyes, and any deficiency negatively affects these areas. Iodine deficiency is normally manifested by:
- Headaches and migraines
- Thyroid disorders
- Chronic fatigue
- Hair loss
- Lowered metabolism (difficulty losing weight)
- Breast disease
- Ovarian and sebaceous cysts
- Cancers, typically breast, ovarian, thyroid, and prostate cancer
- Excess mucous production
- Cognitive impairments
- Anxiety, depression, or irritability
- Fibrocystic breasts
Foods rich in iodine:
- Seaweed, including kelp, nori, kombu, etc.
- Fish – sardines, salmon, cod, tuna
- Salt – Pink Himalayan is the most beneficial as opposed to ionized salt, which should be avoided
- Cranberries; also pure cranberry juice
- Navy beans
- Turkey breast
- Baked potato
Last, but not least, magnesium is yet another essential mineral for proper body function. It takes great part in the formation of teeth and bones, as well as essential enzyme activation. In addition, it regulates blood calcium levels as well as heart and muscle function, creates energy, balances blood sugar, reduces stress, improves sleep, etc.
Magnesium deficiency leads to a number of health complications, including:
- Muscle spasms
- Restless leg syndrome
- Anxiety and depression
- Abnormal heart rhythms
- Migraine headaches
- Bowel disease
The best foods for magnesium supplementation are:
- Pumpkin seeds
- Sesame seeds
- Brazil nuts