Alpha Lipoic Acid

Function:  Antioxidant; energy production; potentates the effects of vitamins C and E

Sources: Liver, yeast, potatoes, spinach, red meat

RDA: None given: 50-100 mg

Deficiency Signs: No specific symptoms given, but people with diabetes and diabetic neuropathy tend to benefit from supplementation.

Toxicity: None known

 

Calcium

Function: Bone and tooth formation, muscle contraction, heartbeat, blood clotting, and nerve impulse.

Sources:  Kelp, cheese, collards, kale, turnip greens, almonds, yogurt, milk, broccoli, and soy.

Optimal Intake: 1000 to 1500 mg

Deficiency Signs: Bone deformity (rickets), growth retardation, insomnia, muscle and leg cramps

 

Toxicity:  Normally, there are no toxic effects with large doses. Some researchers feel that people with a tendency to develop kidney stones should avoid high doses of calcium.

 

Choline

Function:  Required to manufacture the neurotransmitter acetylcholine; metabolism of fats

Sources:  Grains, legumes, egg yolks, whole grains, and soy.

Optimal Intake: 500 mg

Deficiency Signs: Potential liver and kidney dysfunction

 

Toxicity: Rare, but symptoms of fishy breath, sweating, salivation, low blood pressure, and   liver toxicity

 

 Chromium

Function: Blood sugar control.

Sources: Whole grains, meats, potatoes, liver, brewer's yeast.

Optimal Intake: 200 micrograms

Deficiency Signs: Elevated blood-sugar levels.

 

Toxicity:  Chromium appears to be safe, with no major toxic side effects reported.

 

 Coenzyme Q10

Function:  Antioxidant, heart activity, energy production

Sources:  Meat, seafood

Optimal Intake: 30 to 100 mg

Deficiency Signs: Gum disease, heart failure, fatigue, hypertension, atherosclerosis

Toxicity:  None known

 

Copper

Function:  Collagen formation, red blood cell formation, bone formation, energy production, mental function, many other enzyme systems.

Sources: Whole grains, shellfish, nuts, eggs, poultry, organ meats, peas, dark-green leafy vegetables and legumes.

Deficiency Signs: Rare but could include low immune function, poor collagen and   connective tissue strength, bone and joint abnormalities, anemia

Optimal Intake: 2-3 mg

 

Iodine

Function: Required to manufacture the thyroid hormone

Sources: Iodized salt and water; seafood; seaweeds, such as kelp.

Deficiency Signs: Goiter (enlargement of thyroid gland), fatigue, depression.

Optimal Intake: 250 mcg

Toxicity: Too much iodine can interfere with thyroid activity (hypothyroid) and may cause acne eruptions.

 

Inositol

Function: Component of cell membranes; used for depression and to prevent complications of diabetes

Sources:  Citrus fruit, whole grains, nuts, seeds, and legumes

Optimal Intake: 250 mg

Deficiency Signs: None known

Toxicity: None known

 

Iron

Function: Hemoglobin production to supply oxygen to cells, collagen synthesis, normal immune function

Sources: Liver and organ meats, beef, legumes, dark-green leafy vegetables, kelp, blackstrap molasses

 

DeficiencySigns: Iron deficiency is characterized by fatigue, paleness, poor memory and concentration, developmental delays and behavioral disturbances, chronic colds, and weakened immunity, as well as a craving for indigestible materials (e.g., pencils, dirt, ice).

Optimal Intake: Men-l0 mg; Women with a normal cycle or no cycle-l0mg; Women with a heavy cycle-20 mg

Toxicity: Too much iron is associated with an increased risk for developing heart disease and cancer. Acute iron poisoning in children can result in damage to the Intestinal tract liver failure, nausea and vomiting, shock, and death.

 

Toxicity: Nausea, vomiting, and dizziness

 

 L-Carnitine

Function: Energy production, heart function, triglyceride metabolism

Sources:  Meat, dairy products

Optimal Intake: 250 to 500 mg

Deficiency Signs: Loss of muscle tone, recurrent infections, brain swelling, heart irregularities, high triglycerides, fatigue, and failure to thrive

Toxicity:  None

 

Magnesium

Function:  Bone and teeth formation, energy production, glucose metabolism, muscle and nerve impulses.

Sources:  Whole grains, nuts, legumes, soy, green leafy vegetables. Therapeutic Dosage: 400-600 mg

Deficiency Signs: Weakness, confusion, mood changes, muscle spasms/tremors, nausea, poor coordination, heart disturbances, insomnia,

susceptibility to kidney  stones.

Toxicity:People with kidney disease or on heart medications should not supplement magnesium unless instructed to do so by their doctor. Diarrhea is usually the first symptom of too much magnesium.

 

Manganese

Function:  Required for enzyme systems involved with energy production, blood-sugar control, fatty acid synthesis, thyroid hormone function, connective tissue and bone formation, sprains and strains.

Sources:  Liver, kidney, whole grains, nuts, spinach, green leafy vegetables.

Optimal Intake: 5-10 mg

Deficiency Signs: No symptoms have been observed in humans.

Toxicity: Too much manganese can interfere with iron absorption and can cause iron deficiency.

 

Molybdenum

Function:  Active in enzyme systems involved with the metabolism of alcohol, uric acid, and sulfur.

Sources: Meats, whole-grain breads, legumes, leafy vegetables, organ meats, and Brewer’s yeast.

Deficiency Signs: None known, but the inability to detoxify sulfites (preservatives in foods) is reported.

Optimal Intake: 200 mcg

Toxicity:  None reported.

 

 Phosphorous

Function:  Growth, bone production, energy production, kidney function

Sources:  Meats, fish, eggs, poultry, milk products

Optimal Intake: 800-1,200 mg

Deficiency Signs: Deficiency is very rare. Symptoms may include muscle cramps, bone abnormalities, and dizziness.

Toxicity:  Too much phosphorous in the form of phosphoric acid leads to urinary calcium excretion.

 

Potassium

Function:  Nerve transmission, water balance, acid-base balance, heart function, kidney function, adrenal function.

Sources: Fruits and vegetables, especially apples, bananas, carrots, oranges, potatoes, tomatoes, cantaloupe, peaches, plums, strawberries, meat, milk, fish

Optimal Intake: 2000-3000 mg

Deficiency Signs: Muscle wasting, weakness, and spasm; fatigue, mood changes, heart disturbances, nerve problems.

Toxicity: Impaired heart and kidney function; people with heart or kidney conditions or on blood pressure medication should not take potassium unless instructed to do so by a physician.

 

Sodium

Function:  Acid-base balance, muscle contraction, nerve impulse, amino acid absorption.

Sources:  Naturally occurring in meats, milk products, water, eggs, poultry, and fish; abundant in canned foods and other commercially processed foods.

Optimum Intake: 2000 mg

Deficiency Signs: Deficiency is very uncommon, except in the case of dehydration through profuse sweating or diarrhea. Symptoms can include muscle weakness and cramping, low blood pressure, muscle twitching, mental confusion, anorexia, and fainting.

Toxicity: High blood pressure, especially when potassium intake is low.

 

Selenium

Function:  Antioxidant, cancer prevention, immunity, thyroid function, development of the fetus during pregnancy

Sources: Liver, kidney, meats, seafood. Grains and vegetables are good sources, but selenium content depends on the level in the soil where they are grown.

Deficiency Signs: Selenium deficiency is associated with an increased risk for heart disease, cancer, and poor immune function. Therapeutic Dosage: 200 mcg

Toxicity: Teeth abnormalities, depression, nausea and vomiting.

 

 Silicon

Function: Bone, cartilage, and ligament formation; skin elasticity

 

Sources:  Unrefined grains, cereals, and root vegetables

 

RDA: There is no RDA and little information exists about dosages for silicon.

 

Optimal Intake: 50 mg.

 

Deficiency Signs: None known, but brittle hair and nails are suspected.

 

Toxicity:  Miners who were exposed to large dosages of silicon over a prolonged period of time have developed silicosis-a fibrotic formation of the lungs. The amounts found in foods and multivitamins appear to be very safe.

 

Vanadium

Function: Blood-sugar balance, bone and teeth development

Sources:  Shellfish, mushrooms, black pepper, and buckwheat

Optimal Intake: 50 mg (as vanadyl sulfate form)

Deficiency Signs: None known, but blood-sugar imbalances are suspected.

Toxicity:  Little is known, but very high amounts may lead to cramps and diarrhea.

 

Toxicity:   Rare. Very high dosage (above 150mcg)

 

 Zinc

Function: Involved in over 200 enzymatic reactions; required to manufacture many hormones; immunity; skin healing; growth; vision; blood sugar metabolism; antioxidant support; reproductive development and fertility

Sources:  Oysters, herring, shellfish, red meat, whole grains, legumes, and nuts.

Optimal Intake: 15-30 mg

Deficiency Signs: Hair loss, poor wound healing, poor immune function, diarrhea, skin conditions (acne), mental disturbance, white spots on the nails.

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