Minerals are insanely important in our diets. We talk a lot about macros and getting enough protein, we even talk about making sure you get your vitamins, but minerals are SO important.
To put it simply, your body can’t function without the right minerals. Too much of a certain mineral can also cause harm. Your blood pressure, mental health, digestion, immune system, etc, are all affected by the minerals we put into our bodies.
And yet, we know very little about most minerals! My personal knowledge for the longest time was only that calcium builds strong bones, too much sodium is bad for you, and potassium is found in bananas.
So here is your cheat sheet to understanding minerals! I highlighted some of the bigger names here, but there are a bunch more minerals than I could fit.
There are 2 categories of minerals: macrominerals, which you probably know as electrolytes, and microminerals (or trace minerals). All of the minerals are essential, but macrominerals are simply those that are required in larger amounts.
Similar to vitamins, you should be able to get enough minerals in your diet without the need for supplementation (discounting medical situations). After exercise, don’t feel like you need to grab a Gatorade to replenish your electrolytes- you’ll be able to do just that by eating the right foods.
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