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Lung health

Which minerals are good for the lungs?

Minerals are micronutrients essential for good health. But do you know which particular minerals support the health of your lungs?

Stones or minerals for taking care of the lungs?

As the subject for discussion here is minerals, let’s briefly mention lithotherapy (the form of alternative medicine also known as ‘healing with stones’). Lapiz-lazuli, the stone for breathlessness, pulmonary infections, emphysema, coughs … You may have come across this article because you’ve started to research lithotherapy and its potential effects on lung health.

However, it’s not lithotherapy we’re exploring here, but minerals, the basic chemical elements, at a molecular level.

Having a sufficient intake of minerals is essential for good lung health. And there’s no shortage of potential lung complaints to guard against (fibrosis, silicosis, asthma, bronchitis, respiratory infections …) Discover which minerals to prioritise if you want to help protect the health of your lungs.

Which are the most important minerals for lung health?

Zinc and immunity

Let’s start with zinc, which supports normal immune system function, a key buttress against lung infections. Interestingly, it’s been found that zinc deficiency in children may encourage the development of pneumonia (1). In addition, zinc is widely attributed with anti-inflammatory effects.

This mineral is also known to help protect cells (including lung cells) against oxidative stress. Zinc is also believed to support tissue repair and healthy cell growth.

Zinc is found in oysters, calves’ and beef liver and beef itself … For a more substantial intake, you can also take zinc supplements (such as L-OptiZinc ®).

Selenium is another mineral good for the lungs

Slightly less well-known, selenium also helps to protect cells against oxidative stress and supports normal immune system function(2).

Studies have looked, in particular, at selenium’s potential to improve the health of individuals with chronic lung disease.

Good dietary sources of selenium include Brazil nuts, oysters, tuna, offal and herring. Again, you can boost your intake with dietary supplements (such as those containing selenomethionine, which has excellent bioavailability).

The various effects of magnesium

Magnesium is a key mineral which supports normal functioning of the muscular system, potentially preventing the bronchospasms (constriction of the muscles lining the bronchi) associated with conditions such as asthma.

Magnesium also helps to reduce the fatigue that can be caused by respiratory problems.

Magnesium is found in significant amounts in chocolate, Brazil nuts, almonds, cashew nuts and grains. There are also magnesium supplements (such as Magnesium Malate).

Iron and the respiratory tract

Lastly, iron is an essential trace mineral and particularly important for human health.

In supporting normal immune system function, it is likely to protect the body from various communicable diseases, including those of the lungs (3). Ideal then, for protecting the airways.

Iron also plays a role in normal red blood cell formation and transport of oxygen in the blood. An adequate blood oxygen supply is crucial for lung cell function, so that oxygen can be inhaled back into the body.

Finally, iron helps to reduce fatigue, a recurring symptom of lung disorders.

Iron is primarily found in red meat, poultry, fish, dried fruits and pulses. There are also dietary supplements which contain high levels of bioavailable iron (such as Iron Bisglycinate), though these should only be taken if you have been diagnosed with iron deficiency.

Bonus: a synergistic formulation for the lungs

You now know which are the most important minerals for supporting the health of your lungs. To conclude, we’d recommend also checking out our natural formulation Lung Detox, specially designed for the lungs. It contains proanthocyanidins, quercetin, and curcuminoids for the immune and respiratory systems, as well as other natural ingredients likely to support the health of your lungs.

SUPERSMART ADVICE

References

  1. Nessel TA, Gupta V. Selenium. [Updated 2023 Apr 3]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK557551/
  2. Rabinovich D, Smadi Y. Zinc. [Updated 2023 May 1]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK547698/
  3. Barney J, Moosavi L. Iron. [Updated 2023 Jul 10]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2023 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK542171/

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