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Minerals (nutrients) are inorganic substances (contain no carbon) that are necessary for normal body function and development.

Macrominerals

Macro-minerals are needed in large doses (approximate recommended daily intake, milligrams (mg) per day ): 

  1. potassium, K (3500 mg) - metal, ions are necessary for the function of all living cells; 
  2. chloride, Cl− (3400 mg) - essential electrolyte in all body fluids; 
  3. sodium, Na, natrium (2400 mg) - metal, essential for all animals and some plants;
  4. calcium, Ca (1000 mg) - metal, essential for living organisms, produced in supernova nucleosynthesis;
  5. phosphorus, P (1000 mg) - in the form of the phosphate is required for all known forms of life; 
  6. choline (425 - 550 mg) - essential vitamin-like (vitamin B4) nutrient, synthesized in human body, but not sufficiently;
  7. magnesium, Mg (350 mg) - metal, essential for all known living organisms;

Trace Minerals

Trace minerals are needed in very small amounts (recommended daily intake, milligrams (mg) or micrograms (mcg) per day: 

  1. iron, Fe (15 mg) - metal, found in nearly all living organisms;
  2. zinc, Zn (8 - 11 mg) - metal, essential for humans and other organisms;
  3. manganese, Mn (5 mg) - metal, toxic essential trace element;
  4. fluorineF, fluoride ion, F− (3 - 4 mg) - a beneficial poisonous element, essential for bone solidity;
  5. copper, Cu (2 mg) - metal, essential to all living organisms;
  6. iodine, I (150 mcg) - a key component of thyroid hormones;
  7. selenium, Se (35 mcg) - toxic in large doses, essential micronutrient for animals;
  8. chromium, Cr (30 mcg) - chromium (III) is questionably essential for humans.

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Charles Darwin

There is no fundamental difference between man and the higher animals in their mental faculties . . . The lower animals, like man, manifestly feel pleasure and pain, happiness, and misery.

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