If you’ve been looking for ways to improve your health, you’ve likely come across trace minerals at some point, as they are essential for us to thrive and function at our best. However, many people are unaware of what minerals are, how they function, and why they are so essential for optimal health. In this article, we’ll discuss a bit about minerals, and why we recommend supplementing with our Zuma Nutrition Fulvic Acid + Trace Mineral Complex.
So, What Are Minerals?
Minerals are inorganic elements that make up all matter, from the largest planets to the smallest molecules. On Earth, the crust contains the most abundant sources of minerals in the form of rocks and soils. However, of all the hundreds of minerals that make up the Earth's crust, eight specific minerals account for over 98.59% of the mass:
The remaining 1.41% consists of more than 200 trace minerals and elements in micro proportions.
For all living organisms, essential minerals come from food, water, and air. In our food, they come in the form of organic minerals, or inorganic minerals bound to organic acids or salts. Roughly 8% of all minerals on Earth are in an organic form. For plants, they are available as a result of soil bacteria which break the bonds between inorganic mineral rocks and organic matter to form fulvic ionic minerals and other nutrients.
Once a plant takes up fulvic minerals by its roots, it stores and uses the minerals to produce enzymes and other beneficial substances, such as vitamins and antioxidants. We also use organic minerals to the same effect when we consume food; especially uncooked, fresh produce that still has all of its organic enzymes intact. This is a key point here as our soil that grows our food lacks the minerals and micro organism networks it once had, which leads to our food lacking minerals.
Since all minerals are inorganic ions, different types and mineral definitions are distinguished by the structure of minerals that are chemically bound together, what substances are binding them, whether they have an electrical charge, as well as the size of the mineral particles. There are many different types of minerals—including ionic minerals, ionized minerals, fulvic minerals, colloidal minerals, clay minerals, and many others. In this article we will discuss ionic minerals (the most common form of mineral supplement) and fulvic minerals, as well as why fulvic minerals are so beneficial to the body.
Ionic & Ionized Minerals
Natural trace mineral supplements frequently use the terms “ionic trace minerals” and “ionized minerals” to describe a more desirable trace minerals supplement than other varieties. However, this can seem a bit confusing, as minerals themselves are by definition inorganic ions or particles of any given element—so what are ionic trace minerals and what is the difference between ionic and ionized trace minerals?
A mineral ion is an electrically charged mineral particle, such as Ca2+, which could be either an atom or a molecule (a group of atoms). Ionic trace minerals are trace mineral particles that have retained their intrinsic electrical charge and are often bound together to form ionic trace mineral complexes. An ionic trace minerals complex consists of two or more trace mineral ions that are bound together while still retaining a charge.
Ionized trace minerals are trace minerals which have been converted into charged or ionic trace minerals. There is no strict difference between mineral ions, ionic trace minerals and ionized trace minerals. All of these terms could refer to free floating ions or ions bound together within an ionic trace minerals complex, depending on the context. Ionic trace minerals may be synthetically ionized in a laboratory or ionized in nature through natural processes. Likewise, an ionic trace minerals complex may be lab made or found in nature.
Ionic trace minerals are the only trace minerals that are readily absorbed by all living organisms, including us. Our cells can only truly make use of minerals in an ionic form, requiring charged mineral ions for all chemical reactions, nutrient delivery and most other processes that occur in the body.
Larger mineral particles need to be broken down and ionized before they can be absorbed into our cells, thus requiring more energy and bodily resources to absorb. Larger mineral particles are usually only partially absorbed after being broken down through digestion, unlike ionic trace minerals which are efficiently absorbed.
The term fulvic minerals is used vaguely to describe all kinds of fulvic humic minerals, fulvic acid in general, plant-based minerals or any soil-based minerals including clay minerals; however, it is technically none of these interpretations. Fulvic minerals are ionic trace minerals that are bound to fulvic acid and typically part of a fulvic mineral complex. Fulvic minerals are also sometimes referred to as fulvic ionic minerals to emphasize that the mineral particles are charged and of a small size convenient enough for cellular absorption.
A mineral complex is a substance that consists of multiple minerals which are chemically bound to one another. In the case of a fulvic mineral complex, fulvic minerals are bound together via fulvic acid. A fulvic mineral complex is not the same as rock or clay minerals, which have a vastly different structure and are not bound to fulvic acid. However, the mineral ions inside a fulvic mineral complex were once part of sediment, rock or clay mineral structures, as well as organic matter. Over time, erosion, heat, pressure and organic acids produced by soil organisms all break these structures down into bare mineral ions.
Soil organisms have an especially interesting role to play in the formation of fulvic minerals. When organic matter decomposes in the soil, trillions of bacteria are continuously producing enzymes and organic acids which polymerize or cut through mineral bonds as well as breaking down other organic substances. Eventually a humus or compost is formed, which is the organic component of soil. Inside this humus is a rich source of humic substances; particularly humic acid and fulvic acid, which are organic acids that bind to inorganic mineral particles. Humic and fulvic acids accumulate in soil and water, leading to the formation of natural mineral deposits such as peat and shilajit.
While both humic and fulvic acids can form trace mineral complexes, they each have unique properties.
Humic acid consists of heavier particles with a bigger mass than those found in fulvic acid. As a result, humic minerals consist of larger mineral particles than those that make up fulvic minerals. Humic acid also comprises of more nitrogen and less oxygen than fulvic acid. It is soluble in water and other liquids with a pH of 2 or higher and is formed by soil microbes at slightly higher temperatures than fulvic acid.
Fulvic acid is a fraction of humic acid that consists of much smaller particles of low molecular weight, which bind to ionic trace minerals and other tiny nutrient particles. Fulvic acid is soluble in liquids of any pH and is formed by soil microbes at lower temperatures and in wetter conditions than humic acid.
It is these incredibly small ionic mineral particles bound to fulvic acid that constitute fulvic minerals. While scientists can selectively extract fulvic acid from humic acid, they cannot synthesize fulvic acid from scratch in a laboratory. In fact, the molecular structure of fulvic acid has been a scientific enigma since it's discovery, as it changes depending on what minerals or other particles it is exposed to and interacting with.
All living organisms need trace minerals to function, as mineral ions play a leading role in all chemical reactions and biological processes, including nutrient absorption. However, at the cellular level, it is not easy to absorb large, uncharged or free-floating mineral particles without potentially damaging cellular structures or thwarting the absorption of other nutrients. Fulvic minerals are both ionic and bound to fulvic acid. Fulvic acid in itself has many additional benefits, such as lowering inflammation, removing heavy metals, improving the immune response, and much more. It is also known to greatly enhance nutritional absorption of minerals and other nutrients.
Why Take Fulvic Minerals?
In the past, our ancestors would receive fair amounts of fulvic acid from whole food crops grown on soil rich in fulvic minerals, which greatly aided with absorbing other nutrients too. Due to modern farming methods, the soils are depleted of both fulvic minerals and fulvic acid, making it important to opt for a trace minerals supplement alongside a balanced diet. Compared to other types of minerals, fulvic minerals are one of the best for all living organisms to ingest, provided they are extracted from a pure source.
Our Zuma Nutrition Fulvic Acid & Trace Mineral Complex product contains fulvic acid that is naturally water extracted from humic ore. It is a proprietary mineral blend that is nano-sized into micro clusters allowing for optimal bioavailability, allowing these minerals to pass the blood-brain barrier. These ionic minerals help clean up the junk building up in your cells and keep you looking young and feeling vital.
Fulvic minerals are truly a wonderful supplement that offer the body a variety of health benefits. Some of the benefits of fulvic minerals include:
- Better nutrient absorption
- Improved digestion
- Increased energy flow
- Better immune response
- Healthier skin, hair, & nails
- Fights inflammation
- Aids in the removal of toxins
- Combats nutrient and mineral deficiencies
- Provides the body with a variety of minerals that are essential for health
There is a reason why so many health experts and nutritionists recommend supplementing with ionic trace minerals, and when they are naturally sourced, and bound to fulvic acid, they are of even more benefit to your health. As ionic minerals consist of electrically charged particles, they are literally the “Spark of Life,” essential for true health and the optimal functioning of your body.