Why are minerals important?
The mineral test tells you how optimal your magnesium, selenium and zinc levels are. All three are essential trace elements – that is, nutrients with which you need to supply your body externally through your diet.
If you develop a magnesium deficiency, selenium deficiency or zinc deficiency, it can have a negative impact on your health – from constant fatigue and muscle weakness to the risk of developing cardiovascular disease, kidney, liver or thyroid problems or other illnesses.
An excess of magnesium, selenium or zinc also poses health risks.
However, it is difficult to pinpoint the exact connection between symptoms, eating habits and mineral deficiency in everyday life. A blood test can help by measuring the concentration of minerals in your blood.
Who should take the mineral test?
Since magnesium deficiency, selenium deficiency and zinc deficiency do not manifest themselves through clear symptoms, it can be worthwhile for everyone to test their own mineral levels.
In general, people who eat a rather unbalanced diet and suffer from intestinal diseases or other digestive problems are at a higher risk of such mineral deficiencies.
In addition, there are certain risk groups and risk factors for mineral deficiencies:
Magnesium deficiency: competitive athletes, menopausal women, pregnant and breastfeeding women, people who regularly take antibiotics, birth control pills or proton pump inhibitors.
Selenium deficiency: Smokers, alcoholics and people who need dialysis, as a lot of selenium is lost in the process.
Zinc deficiency: vegans and vegetarians, people who suffer from stress or who do a lot of sport, especially in summer.
How does the Mineral Deficiency Test work?
For the mineral test, you take a small blood sample from your fingertip with a lancet. The sample is sent in a tube via a return envelope to a specialist diagnostic laboratory.
The diagnostic laboratory then analyses the concentration of the minerals magnesium, selenium and zinc in your blood.
What will the test results tell me?
The detailed results report contains the results of the laboratory analysis. You will find out how high the concentration of the minerals is in your blood:
– Zinc in millimoles per litre (mmol/l)
– Selenium in micrograms per litre (μg/l)
– Magnesium in milligrams per litre (mg/l)
You will receive reference values with which you can compare your mineral concentrations to give you a better idea of what they should ideally be.
The report also provides you with valuable information about the three minerals and gives you clear recommendations with which you can optimise your levels with a balanced diet and food supplements.
What is a magnesium deficiency?
Magnesium is involved in numerous processes in the body. These include the function of muscles and nerves, the formation of bones and teeth and regular heart function.
Competitive athletes need more magnesium, as do menopausal women, pregnant and breastfeeding women and people with alcoholism. These groups are more likely to develop a magnesium deficiency if they do not adjust their diet.
Magnesium deficiency can cause muscle cramps, fatigue, poor performance, difficulty concentrating, headaches, and tingling and numbness, among other symptoms. In the long run, cardiovascular diseases and kidney problems can become more likely.
How can I optimise my magnesium intake?
Magnesium is mainly found in plant-based foods, in fruit, vegetables and wholegrain products. Pumpkin and sunflower seeds, quinoa and oat flakes are very rich in magnesium. We also consume a large part of our daily requirement through liquids, such as mineral water, coffee and tea. If you have confirmed a deficiency, you can also take magnesium supplements.
What is a selenium deficiency?
Selenium forms important proteins in the body. It strengthens the immune system and protects cells from damage. It also supports the function of vitamins, thyroid hormones and sperm formation, among other things.
Selenium deficiency is more common in heavy smokers and alcoholics, in women who breastfeed for a long time and in people with intestinal diseases.
Selenium deficiency symptoms include, among other things, fatigue, muscle weakness, decreased immune function and depressive moods.
What are sources of selenium?
Selenium is found in plant-based and animal foods – especially in coconuts and Brazil nuts. The exact selenium content depends on how selenium-rich the soil is in which a food was grown. With climate change, selenium content in many soils is decreasing, which in turn means that our food contains less selenium.
If you take selenium supplements, you should make sure you don’t exceed an amount of 45 milligrammes per day.
What is a zinc deficiency?
Among other things, zinc is important for a strong immune system, skin and hair growth and rapid wound healing. In addition, zinc, together with selenium, protects the body from damage caused by toxic heavy metals.
A zinc deficiency can be caused by very intense sports, among other things, as you lose zinc through sweating. Vegans and vegetarians and people with chronic inflammatory bowel diseases are also at a greater risk of zinc deficiency.
Symptoms for this deficiency include hair loss, loss of appetite, diarrhoea, muscle cramps and slow wound healing.
How can I optimise my zinc intake?
Zinc is found in a wide variety of foods – in large quantities, for example, in oysters, cheese, eggs, offal and sunflower seeds, and to a lesser extent in cereals, nuts and pulses.
However, your body can absorb zinc from animal foods much better than from plant-based foods. If you have a confirmed zinc deficiency, you can also take zinc supplements. The best supplements are those in which zinc is found in compounds such as zinc histidine, which the body can utilise very effectively.
Can I overdose on minerals?
Not only can you have too little magnesium, selenium or zinc in your body – it is also possible to have an excess of minerals. Too much selenium, for example, can increase the risk of diabetes and prostate cancer, too much zinc can interfere with the absorption of other trace elements, and too much magnesium can cause diarrhoea and gastrointestinal complaints.
As a rule, you can not achieve a mineral surplus through your normal diet, but only if you take high doses of dietary supplements over a long period of time. For this reason, you should only take mineral supplements for a longer period of time if you have determined a mineral deficiency through a mineral test.
Who should NOT take the Mineral Deficiency Test?
The cerascreen® Mineral Deficiency Test is not suitable for or is only partially suitable for certain groups of people:
- People with infectious diseases, like hepatitis, are not allowed to take the mineral test.
- Pregnant and breastfeeding women should only carry out the mineral test under medical supervision. The given reference ranges and recommendations do not apply to people in this group; consult your medical professional for advice concerning your test results
- The Mineral Deficiency Test is not intended for those under the age of 18
The test is not designed for diagnosing serious illnesses. For example, if you suffer from severe depression or extreme pain, contact a doctor.