What do minerals do in the human body?

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Minerals play a verity of roles in the body. There are nearly 60 elements which exist in the mineral. They can be metal ions, halogens, and other non-metal elements. In reference men, mineral comprises of 2.5 to 2.7 kg from the total body weight. Based on the amount of mineral required, the minerals are classified as macro and micro. Macrominerals are required more than 0.05% of the body weight and the vice versa for the micro minerals.

Functions:

  1. Some minerals play a role as co-factor for enzymes. Most of the enzyme in our body are referred as metalloenzymes as they require metal ions as co-factor for their activity. Example: Hexokinase, Polymerase, and RNase require Mg ions. Superoxide dismutase which helps in eliminating the free radicals require Cu ions.
  2. Structural support. Minerals such Ca and P plays a role in the formation of the bones and teeth.
  3. Immunity. Most of the enzymes related to the immune system are mineral depended. They are also required in antibody productions.
  4. Blood clotting requires Ca2+ ions.
  5. Neural signalling, membrane potential, and action potential. They requires ions such as Na+, K+, Ca2+ Cl- etc.
  6. Respiration process involves chloride shift.
  7. Digestion and absorption also requires essential minerals. Mineral concentration affects the bio-prophecies happening in the gut. Cl- (associated with H+ as HCl) is required for the degradation of the proteins. Na+ is required for the absorption of the glucose by the villi.
  8. Thirst regulation. When the temperature increases, body tends to lose water and salt causing dehydration of the cell which makes the blood concentrated.
  9. Released/ synthesis of hormones. Insulin is packed in the vesicle having Zn2+ ion. The thyroid hormones T3 and T4 consist of iodine as integral part .
  10. Buffering (Acid-base balance). Regulating the acid and base level in the body thereby maintaining the body pH. Example: Phosphate buffer system.
  11. Contraction and relaxation of the muscles (including cardiac muscles) requires Ca2+ ions.
  12. Cell signaling, cell cycle, apoptosis, vasopressin hormones and other cellular process are mediated by secondary messengers such as Ca2+.
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