What is a micronutrient?
What is a Micronutrient Follows on from the post on What is a Macronutrient and at the end of this post, you will have more of an understanding of what Micronutrients are and what they do.
You can also find more useful information in the Know your Vitamins infographic.
Micronutrients are antioxidants, phytochemicals, trace elements, minerals and vitamins found in natural sources of foods as well as man made versions available in supplements.
Micronutrients are essential for overall health of an individual and they are generally found in a balanced diet containing nuts, leafy green vegetables and generally any fruit and veg that has a wide range of colours.
They will not help you if your intention is to gain weight but they will help you in maintaining the overall health and vitality.
You might argue that multivitamins can supplement your daily meals, but they cannot replace healthy eating of fruits and veggies that also provide enzymes that help metabolise the vitamins and minerals more easily.
Besides providing you with the essential micronutrients, fruits and vegetables will also help you feel fuller within your calorie limits. Similar to that of whole grains, fresh vegetables, and fruits also come packed with fiber. This, in turn, will help you keep a watch on your food consumption.
Many of us have craved for ice creams and chocolates, but have you ever craved for spinach and carrots? Even, if you had this craving, you might have consumed just about 100 calories, but your body might have got a solid dose of more than 20 nutrients from these natural foods.
What can micronutrients do for your body?
Micronutrients are known to be effective in disease prevention and they will fight the signs of aging. Their richness in a number of minerals like zinc, iron, iodine, folic acid, and vitamin A will help with improving the overall health of each and every organ in your body.
For instance Vitamin A will help with improving your vision, while the iron content will help your body fight against anemia.
Even though your body needs minimal quantities of micronutrients, a deficiency of some or any micronutrient can lead to serious illness.
As you may know, zinc, iron, iodine, folic acid, and vitamin A deficiency is prevailing from around the world. These deficiencies can have a negative impact on the health of women in their childbearing age.
A few useful Micronutrients facts
Iodine is important for the thyroid gland and helps your thyroid gland develop and function while also aiding your body in fat metabolism for energy and promoting growth.
Magnesium is important for the heart in maintaining its normal rhythm and aids In the conversion of glucose (blood sugar) into energy. Magnesium is also crucial in the body’s ability to use calcium and vitamin C.
Manganese is important for the formation of bone as well energy production and the use of the macronutrients, protein, fat and carbohydrate.
Chloride is important for the regulation of water and electrolytes inside the cells, and also helps to maintain appropriate cellular pH.
Iron helps your body produce red blood cells and lymphocytes.
So there you go, a brief introduction to what is a Micronutrient, what they are and why they are so important to your overall health. I hope you have found this brief introduction to Micronutrients useful.
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As always I wish you Good Health and Happiness.
For a breakdown on vitamins and what foods to get them from, see B Vitamins Part 2. B Group Vitamins , B Vitamins Part 1. B Vitamins and mental health or Know Your Vitamins – infographic
For more information on working out your ideal macro requirements, head over to Bodybuilding.com and use their Macronutrient Calculator.