I’ve always been partial to whole food — and preferably liquid — forms of mineral supplementation. They feel easier to incorporate into my daily routine rather than taking capsules. I trust the body to extract the nutrients it needs and to excrete the rest. As someone who has had to manage a lifetime of vitamin and mineral depletion from Crohn’s Disease and the resulting severe gut inflammation, I wanted to share my favorite forms of mineral supplementation in case it might help someone else. I’m always looking for new ideas, as well, so please share what has worked for you in the comments below.
Whole Food Sources
The best way to get trace minerals is through your diet. Humans only need small amounts of these essential minerals. The following foods are high in the 10 dietary trace minerals:
Chromium: Meat, broccoli, potatoes, apples, bananas, garlic, basil
Cobalt: Red meat, milk, fish, cabbage, figs, turnips
Copper: Organ meats, shellfish, nuts, seeds, cocoa
Iodine: Seafood, plants grown near oceans (iodine-rich soil)
Iron: Organ meats, muscle meat, poultry, fish, legumes, dark leafy greens
Manganese: Pecans, pineapples, sweet potatoes, seeds
Molybdenum: Legumes, nuts
Selenium: Brazil nuts, seeds, legumes
Stinging Nettles Herbal Infusions
One of my favorite ways to increase my mineral stores is to drink stinging nettles infusions on a daily basis. Nettles are chock full of many nutrients, including many minerals and vitamins. Herbal infusions are easy to make. I pour a quart of boiling water over a cup of dried nettle leaves in a mason jar. I steep it overnight, for about 8 hours. Then I strain in a fine-mesh strainer and chill the liquid for several hours before drinking. In order to receive the full nutritional benefit from nettles infusions, you need to drink them regularly, at least several times a week. I get my dried organic nettle leaves from Mountain Rose Herbs but many herbal companies will sell them.
Whole Food Supplement Line
The one line of whole food supplements in capsule form that I do take regularly is made by Ancestral Supplements. They make a diverse line of small-batch, high-quality, freeze-dried organ products from grass-fed cows. They recommend starting with their Beef Liver, Beef Organs, and Beef Bone and Marrow products if you are unsure where to begin. Organ meats are nutrient-dense and so important for our health. Yet our culture no longer consumes organ meats as part of a daily diet. The ideal way to get the nutrients from offal (organ meats) is to eat the fresh form with your meal, but if cooking and eating organ meats is a big turn-off for you, this product line is a wonderful way to get the nutrients into a modern lifestyle in an easy-to-ingest way.
Fulvic acid is formed when organic matter (plants and animals) decompose. It is found in the humus part of soil and peat, and is also found in streams and lakes. Fulvic complexes provide important transportation for nutrients into the cells and bio-waste and toxins out of the cells. They are particularly helpful for boosting energy and reduction of inflammation.
Humic complexes collect free radicals and bio-waste, bind with heavy metals and provide important detoxification support by carrying these unwanted elements out of the body. They are a naturally occurring result of ancient, decomposed, fresh-water plants.
Beam Minerals makes a liquid humic acid product called Micro-BOOST™. It looks like mud water but tastes innocuous. I do a shot of this in the mornings. Micro-BOOST™️ is 100% bioavailable and provides naturally occurring micronutrients, trace elements, phytonutrients, amino acids and some B-vitamins which can be immediately utilized by the body. They also have a fulvic acid spray that I use on my feet when I feel cramps coming on from electrolyte loss.
Another whole food source of trace minerals is shilajit, but this can be very unpleasant to ingest in the resin form. Panacea by MITOLIFE is a pure tablet form of shilajit from the Siberian mountains in Russia. Shilajit naturally secretes from high elevation mountains in the form of a tar or resin. Panacea is the resin compressed into an easy-to-take tablet. Shilajit is a complete trace mineral source, containing more than 84 carbon-bonded organic minerals that are preferred by the body. It is also a rich source of fulvic acid, a compound which increases delivery of the minerals into the cell, enhances the absorption of other compounds taken with it, and chelates and complexes inorganic minerals. It is a whole food supplement that brings mineral balance to the body in a natural way.
Trace Mineral Drops
Mega-Mag drops (Natural Ionic Magnesium with Trace Minerals) by Trace Minerals have always been my go-to for my reverse osmosis water (R.O. water has no mineral content so you need to add minerals back in). I take a dropperful in a glass of reverse osmosis water 3-4x per day. The same company also sells just regular Trace Mineral Drops.
It’s a good idea to rotate your culinary sea salts since each blend has a different ratio of naturally occurring minerals, depending on where they are sourced from. My favorites are Celtic Sea Salt, Real Salt. and “Transformational Salts” — a 100% pure and Scalar enhanced raw mix of 5 precious ancient seabed and sea salts of the earth from the Peruvian Andes Mountains, Hawaii, Himalayas & Utah rich in minerals – without excipients, stabilizers, conditioners, chemicals or preservatives.
Mountain Rose Herbs has a beautiful selection of gourmet culinary salts that I sometimes explore — black lava, Cyprus flake, Himalayan, Kaiwe Smoked, Red Alaea, and more!