Inorganic (inorganic compounds are those chemical compounds which don’t have carbon in them) phosphorus is very important for every life form as they are a component of DNA an RNA. Life cannot exist or evolve without DNA and RNA. At any point of time the body will have 70% of phosphorous in organic form and 30 percent as inorganic form. Phosphorous is one of the most important quantity mineral in our body. At a cellular level energy is transported only through ATP (adenosine triphosphate), so no living being can exist without phosphorous. Phosphorus also plays an important role is bone strength (in the form of Calcium phosphate).
Phosphorous – Sources
Dairy products, green leafy vegetables, most of the nuts and seeds, tofu, thyme, oregano, dill and cinnamon are very good source of Phosphorous. A good wholesome meal supplies sufficient quantity of phosphorous to the body. Hence phosphorous deficiency is relatively rare.
Biological Functions of Phosphorous
It is one of the most important biologically active dietary mineral. It plays numerous roles in every living organism including human beings. The important biological functions of phosphorous are:
- It helps ATP formation
- It is an integral component of DNA and RNA and hence the basis of all life
- Aid in proper metabolism
- It maintains bone hardness and strength
Phosphorous – Deficiency
Malnutrition can result in phosphorous deficiency, and in servere cases the deficiency leads to a condition called as hypophosphatemia. Symptoms of hypophosphatemia are muscle and neurological dysfunction, and disruption of muscle, tissues and blood cells due to lack of ATP.
Phosphorous – Requirements and supplements
On an average for a normal individual the daily requirement of Phosphorous is 700 mg/day. Phosphorus is an essential for both plants and animals and the growth of the plant is mainly determined by the phosphorous, hence all fertilizers have phosphorus in them. So a regular wholesome food should provide sufficient phosphorous. Phosphorous is present in dairy products and also in nuts, seeds and vegetables.Too much phosphate can lead to diarrhea and calcification of organs. In excess phosphorous prevent the body’s ability to absorb and use other major minerals like iron, calcium, magnesium, and zinc. We always recommend natural sources of nutrients. Read more about the risks involved using nutrient supplement before opting for supplements.