Trace Elements, Water and Life

(Last Updated On: September 12, 2016)

Trace elements and health is a lively research field in life science. In daily life, the human body through drinking water absorption of trace elements also occupies the corresponding proportion, now only trace elements and some basic knowledge of human health to do some simple introduction.


In human nutrition, there are 11 main elements in the required number of descending order of oxygen, carbon, hydrogen, nitrogen, calcium, phosphorus, potassium, sulfur, sodium, chlorine, magnesium. The first four kinds of the body weight of 95%, and the rest of the body weight of 4%. The human body has to maintain the life activities of the “essential trace elements”, is less than about 1% of the body weight. Each trace element content is less than 0.01%, they are iron, copper, zinc, manganese, iodine, cobalt, molybdenum, selenium, fluoride, barium, more than 10 kinds.

1. Zinc

The importance of human body is considered to be a key element in the growth of children and the wisdom of elements in the early , now known that it is necessary to maintain a variety of enzymes in the human body, the essential components of long-term system. It still constitutes the essential elements of a variety of protein molecules, while the protein is a cell. Therefore, almost all of the zinc is distributed in the cell, and its content is more abundant than any other element. Now, many studies have reported that zinc has many physiological functions, and it is an important element in human life. When the human zinc deficiency, can cause a series of physiological disorders. Although zinc has such a magical effect on the human body, excessive intake is also harmful. Generally think that people need zinc 10-14.5 mg per day, mostly from food and drinking water.

2. Iron

It is necessary for the mammalian blood and exchange of oxygen. Without iron, hemoglobin can not be produced, oxygen can not be transported, resulting in iron deficiency anemia. It is worth noting that, even if children with mild iron deficiency, their attention will be significantly reduced, thus affecting their ability to learn. People absorb iron from the diet, such as grains, meat, vegetables, fruit, etc, estimated daily intake of 10-15 mg. At the same time get a certain amount of iron from the drinking water.

3. Manganese

Participate in the hematopoietic process, and play a role in the early stage of the embryo. A variety of patients with anemia, manganese, manganese deficiency in the region, the incidence of cancer is high. It was also found in the study of arteriosclerosis patients, due to the heart of the aorta in the absence of manganese, so the arteriosclerosis has relationship with the lack of manganese in the human body. In addition, manganese is an indispensable part in the composition of arginine and proline, and it is also involved in the process of hematopoiesis and fat metabolism.

4. Copper

The essential elements in the process of human metabolism, in the formation of red blood cells.It can promote inorganic iron into organic iron, promote iron from storage sites into the bone marrow, accelerate the formation of hemoglobin and porphyrin. It is a very effective catalyst in the redox system. Lack of copper can cause anemia, the lack of melanin, often forming hair decolorization. It can even cause albinism.studies have shown that copper deficiency can cause cardiac enlargement, blood vessels become weak, myocardial degeneration, cardiac hypertrophy and other symptoms, is associated with coronary heart disease.

5. Cobalt

The function of the human body is mainly through vitamin B12 plays a physiological role. Its biochemical role is to stimulate hematopoiesis, promote the synthesis of animal hemoglobin. Promote gastrointestinal iron absorption, and prevent the deposition of fat in the liver and bone.
If the lack of cobalt, it will cause giant cell anemia, and affect the protein, amino acid, coenzyme and lipoprotein synthesis. The content of cobalt is higher in the mineral water which come from the weathered igneous rock and the super base rock.

6. Molybdenum

The content of molybdenum in general drinking water is very low, generally less than 1 milligrams per liter, which is one of the reasons for the lack of molybdenum. The incidence of esophageal cancer was higher in the area of lack of molybdenum. The survey data of the high incidence area of esophageal cancer showed that the drinking water in the area was short of molybdenum, Copper, zinc, manganese. Excessive or lack of molybdenum intake will cause dental caries, kidney stones, malnutrition.


7. Chromium

With oxide morphology from Cr3+–Cr6+. But in nature, the most common is mainly to Cr3+, objective existence as a human essential trace element of the physiological function, but also limited to the form of Cr3+, and the other Crn+ is harmful to human body.
The physiological function of Cr3+ on the human body, according to the current research results show that mainly on grape sugar and lipid metabolism, as well as for the use of some amino acids in the system is very necessary. Therefore, the lack of chromium is easy to lead to the decrease of the life activity of insulin, which can lead to diabetes. In 1959 biomedical Merz confirmed that chromium is an element with insulin and glucose metabolism in essential. For children with low chromium content in the drinking water, the normal digestion of glucose was restored after treatment with chromium. At present, the human need for chromium has not yet seen a clear report, from the intake and absorption of the situation, the daily intake of 50-110 mg is to meet the needs of the physical.

8. Vanadium

Has a certain biological activity, is one of the essential trace elements. Vanadium has a certain positive role in the hematopoietic process, vanadium can inhibit the synthesis of cholesterol, there is a role in reducing blood pressure. Animal lack of vanadium can lead to increased cholesterol levels, growth retardation, bone abnormalities.

9. Selenium

Selenium is necessary to maintain the nutrition trace elements in human health, plays an important role in anti-cancer, prevention and treatment of cardiovascular disease, Keshan disease and Kashin Beck disease and other aspects have been recognized by the world. Selenium in the human body main function is: firstly, selenium is an important element of the composition of a variety of glutathione peroxidase, participate in synthesis of coenzyme A and Q, to protect the structure of cell membrane, followed by anti-oxidation, can effectively prevent cancer induced by a variety of peroxide free radical formation. It has been reported that the antioxidant effect of selenium is similar to that of vitamin E, and the effect is greater, and selenium can reverse the harmful physiological effects of cadmium. The daily minimum required that adults selenium amount is 0.03 – 0.068 mg, excessive intake will cause chronic poisoning.

10. Iodine

Is the necessary trace elements for the human body. human body iodine deficiency, can cause a series of physiological and biochemical disorders abnormalities, but high dose of iodine can cause thyroid poisoning, long-term excessive intake of iodine is not useless, but harmful.

11. Fluorine

Trace elements necessary for the human body. For the human body, its concentration in the human body depends on the external environment. When the amount of fluoride in the environment is high, especially when the amount of fluoride in drinking water is high, it have more intake. It is generally believed that the physiological requirement of human fluoride is 0.5-1.0 mg per day. Adults under normal circumstances, the daily absorption is from drinking water and the diet, the absorption of fluoride from the drinking water is almost safe to absorb. The effects of drinking water content on human health has a decisive role in the 0.5-1.0 mg per litre for the suitable range of fluoride content in drinking water. When the water fluoride content was 1.5-2.0 mg per liter, sometimes mottled teeth and affect the appearance, and the content reached 3-6 mg per liter, there will be fluoride the daily intake of fluoride bone disease, no more than 4-6 mg, have accumulated phenomenon of fluorine.
Fluorine on human physiological function, mainly in the formation of teeth and bones, the structure of connective tissue and calcium and phosphorus metabolism has an important role. The amount of fluoride into the human body, the first infiltration of teeth, the enamel of the hydroxyl apatite in the absorption of lime, the formation of a hard surface layer of the surface protection of the. This protective layer to the enamel is not easily dissolved in acidic conditions, inhibition of acidophilic bacteria activity, prevent adverse effects of certain enzymes on the teeth, which can prevent the occurrence of dental caries. According to that: less than 0-0.3 mg per liter, long-term drinking fluoride content in drinking water, and food from the channel cannot be added, it will cause dental caries in children, especially the elderly, brittle bones also prone to fracture. To this end, the water supply in this area is often added to fluoride, so that the fluoride concentration of 0.6-1.7 mg per liter. To 2 litres per person per day, the range of 1.2-3.4 Mg from the plus fluoride. When excessive intake of fluoride, may also appear in dental fluorosis and fluorosis disease, this is a serious hazard to human diseases. It makes people’s teeth easy to fall off, limb deformation, systemic joint pain, serious impact on human health, therefore, when the fluoride content of these drinking water is too high, it is necessary to take measures to reduce fluoride.


Trace elements are essential to the human body, but in the human body must maintain a special equilibrium state, once the balance is destroyed, it will affect the health. As for some elements of the human body are beneficial or harmful is relative, the key lies in the right amount, as to how much is appropriate, and how they are in the human body’s physiological function and the formation of the structure and so on, are worthy of our further study.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *