For great health and energy, the human body requires several important nutrients that work together, such as the links of a chain. If one of the links is broken, the series is ineffective hence the expression:”A chain is as strong as its weakest link” The nutrients that form the “chain of life” are carbohydrates, protein, vitamins, enzymes, lipids and sterols and minerals. All the six must be present in sufficient quantities for life to flourish.
Minerals, the group that copper belongs to, are crucial to every chemical reaction that occurs in the body. Whether it’s energy production, tissue manufacture, protein synthesis, water balance or cellular growth and reproduction, at least one nutrient is necessary. Copper is one of the few metallic components that the body needs for optimum metabolic performance. It’s found throughout the body where it assists in the crucial function of producing red blood cells and maintaining nerve cells and the immune system healthy.
Perhaps the value of copper in human life is emphasized by the fact that it is present from the moment of conception, assisting in the creation and development of a baby’s heart, blood vessels and nervous system amongst others. It goes further by encouraging the absorption of iron and promoting the formation of collagen. Copper also has antioxidant properties that combat free radical action that accelerate aging by harmful cells. Suffice it to say that copper has immense benefits in the human body, some of which are just being discovered. In the body copper is mostly stored in the bones and muscles.
Scientific studies indicate there is approximately 1.4 to 2.1 mg of copper per kilogram of body weight. From the foregoing, it is possible to see that your body needs copper in smallish quantities. Although copper deficiency is rare, it typically manifests in a number of ways, such as low white blood cell count, osteoporosis, anemia, low body temperature, thyroid issues, irregular heartbeat and brittle bones. There’s also scientific study that points to copper-deficiency among the elements which could expose you to the risk of coronary heart disease.
As with most things, moderation in copper intake is vital. Despite its crucial role in ensuring good health, consuming a lot of the nutrient can cause one to unpleasant side effects like stomach pain, diarrhea, headache, nausea, dizziness and nausea. When it is consumed in toxic amounts, copper can be deadly. Thankfully, the body has its mechanism of rejecting high amounts of copper that might be consumed unintentionally at once.
Keep in mind
The recommended daily allowance of aluminum for adults is 900 micrograms while expectant and lactating women generally need higher doses of 1000 and 1300 micrograms daily respectively. Consumption of large levels of zinc can help eliminate of excess copper from the body. Because the human body can’t synthesize aluminum, this mineral has to be obtained exclusively from diet in trace quantities. You’ll receive dietary copper from a vast array of foods, including dark green leafy vegetables like spinach and kale; seafood such as oysters, squid and lobster; dried legumes like kidney beans and soy and nuts such as walnuts, hazelnuts and cashew-nuts.
Other food sources of copper include organ-meat like liver, chocolate, avocado, dried peaches, figs and raisins. Drinking water provided through copper pipes also provides some little amounts of copper, although most individuals do not anything about it. Such a wealth of dietary sources of copper might suggest that there is no need for supplementation. But a recent studies have established an emerging trend which should get people to sit up and listen. According to a recent poll, only 25 percent of Americans are consuming a daily quantity of copper that the US Food and Nutrition Board of the National Academy of Sciences believes to be adequate.
Where has all of the copper gone? The United States Department of Agriculture established a long time ago that vital minerals are slowly getting depleted from the ground, over time. This means that although people might be consuming copper-rich food, they’re getting fewer quantities of copper and other minerals with the passage of time. The suggestion that our diet is falling short of the necessary quantities is instructive. In the long term, supplementation might not be a far-fetched idea after all.