Effect of Exercise on Mineral Needs
Exercise is known to be beneficial to physical and mental health, however, it is also known to increase the body’s need for certain minerals. These minerals are necessary for optimal health, as they are involved in a variety of physiological processes. The minerals most likely inadequate in an athlete’s diet are iron, zinc, and calcium. Iron is essential for oxygen transport and energy production, while zinc is necessary for proper immune system functioning and wound healing. Calcium is integral for bone and muscle health, as well as aiding in nerve transmission. A major cause of low mineral intake is a poor dietary intake of foods rich in minerals, as well as poor absorption due to gastrointestinal problems or medications (Ruggles and McAnulty, 2016). Factors that increase or decrease calcium, iron, and zinc absorption include body composition, dietary intake, and the presence of other minerals. Calcium absorption is increased by vitamin D and certain amino acids, while it is decreased by high levels of dietary fiber, oxalate, and phytate (Bouillon et al., 2017). Iron absorption is increased by meat, fish, and poultry, while it is decreased by high levels of dietary fiber and ph. Cont…
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