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The minerals or elements are a large group of vital substances necessary for normal life.
The essential elements have been grouped in various ways. Perhaps the most practical way to think of them is to divide them into the macro-minerals and the trace elements.
These are the bulk minerals that are required in quantities of several hundred milligrams every day. This group includes:
They are involved in structural functions (bones and cells) as well as metabolic ones.
These are required in very small amounts (a few milligrams or less a day). This group includes:
They have subtle but vitally important effects on the metabolism.
This group includes a number of trace elements that have not yet been proven to be essential to normal human metabolism, but which are present in the body, and which appear to have some influence on its working. This group includes:
With regard to which elements are essential there is still a great deal to learn.
Davies, S. and A. Stewart., 1997, Nutritional Medicine. Pan.