Minerals are micronutrients that are required by the body just as macronutrients are many types of food minerals that are essential for the body. Pick up any bottle of water or food product and you will see that the manufacturer will have mentioned the types of food minerals in the food and the quantities that these are available in. These minerals are essential for the bones and other parts of the body. By way of example, calcium, one of the many types of food minerals is required by men and women for their teeth and bones. This is especially important for women as they have a higher tendency of developing osteoporosis later on in life if they do not have sufficient amounts of calcium. People who do not have sufficient amounts of this mineral would have, what is known as, brittle bones. Their nails break easily and their teeth may not be as strong as they should be. This can be found in milk, tofu, almonds, hazelnuts, pulses and many other foods.
Another one of the types of food minerals, which is extremely important for the transportation of oxygen in the body, is iron. Iron is used by the system to make hemoglobin for the red blood cells. Hemoglobin cells in the red blood cells absorb oxygen and transport it throughout the system. Usually people with low levels of iron are anemic- you can tell them apart from a person with healthy amounts of iron in their system because they tend to be pale. They also get exhausted fast and cannot concentrate for too long or get involved in strenuous activity either. Iron can be found in red meat, eggs, nuts, whole-meal bread, broccoli, beans (especially red beans) and such like. However, too much iron is never good either.
Zinc is also one of the various types of food minerals that are important for a healthy immune system. People with a lack of zinc in their systems would see that any wounds, cuts and bruises do not heal as fast as they would if a person with healthy amounts of zinc would get these. Lack of zinc would also cause a low sexual libido and skin problems. Zinc can be found in brown rice, whole grain breads, cheese, sardine, lean red meat and such like. Zinc pills are also available but it would be a better idea to go for natural foods unless you are seriously low on zinc.
Potassium and sodium are those types of food minerals that regulate the water levels in the body. It is usually important to drink a lot of water to flush out some of these salts because they can cause water retention and this is especially the case in people who are above the age of 50. Certain foods consist of good amounts of potassium though the levels of these types of food minerals are reduced when one cooks the food. Fruits such as bananas and orange juice are rich in potassium as well.