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Why you should eat your micronutrients.

Micronutrients are foods that consist of vitamins and minerals. Although the body needs small amounts of them, they play important roles in the development of the human body, a deficiency can result to illness such as, Osteoporosis (lack of calcium), rickets (lack of vitamin D) and scurvy (lack of vitamin C ). Micronutrients are considered nutrient dense foods which simply mean foods that are high in nutrients but relatively low in calories. Example of nutrient dense foods are fruits and vegetables, legumes such as beans and peas, nuts and whole grain.

Vitamins are found in two form, water-soluble and fat-soluble. Water-soluble vitamin is lost easily through body fluids and it is important it is replaced daily while fat-soluble vitamins accumulates and are not needed on a daily basis.

Minerals are also in two form, macro-minerals and micro-minerals.

Macro-minerals which are needed in large amount :

  • Calcium

  • Magnesium

  • Potassium

  • Phosphorous

  • Sodium

Micro-minerals are needed in trace amount:

  • Iron

  • Zinc

  • Floride

  • Copper

  • Iodine

Here are some important micronutrients and food sources:

  • Calcium for muscle functions; kale, brocolli, mustard green, chickpea

  • Potassium for muscle contraction, nerve impulses, protein synthesis; tomatoes, nuts, egg plant

  • Phosphorous for tissue growth; wheat, peanuts, potatoes

  • Sodium for nerve singling, fluid balance; salt, roasted or salted nuts, pickles

  • Zinc for functional immune system; legumes, beans, oatmeal, nuts, lentils, chickpea

  • Iron for production of red blood cell; legumes, grains, nuts and seeds, vegetables

  • Copper maintains blood vessels; potatoes, dark leafy greens, pepper, beans, nuts

  • Vitamin A-leafy green vegetables, carrots, sweet potatoes, pumpkin

  • Vitamin C-berries, citrus fruits, green vegetables e.g green pepper, Brussel sprouts, spinach

  • Vitamin B12 ;fortified food, cereal, soy milk, nutritional yeast

Supplementation can be a solution for deficiencies, but it cannot replace the role of macronutrients and micronutrients or proper diet and nutrition planning. Supplements can provide some benefits especially for nutrients that are not as common in normal foods therefore tougher to get from our regular diets.

Also we can see the obvious benefit of all these minerals and vitamins in our skin and hair.



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