Why you need copper in the diet

Copper is a trace element required by the body in very small doses. It is however essential to have enough of it in the body because its quantity does not equal its importance. Vitaminfood meal replacement shakes offer complete nutrition including adequate doses of copper. With Vitaminfood products you get all you need, the micro and trace elements included. 

Vitaminfood supplies the daily requirement which is about 2-3 mg per day. Most of this intake is concentrated in organs with high metabolism rates because copper is also essential for metabolism. So the liver, heart, kidneys and brain will get the bulk of these minute quantities.

Some of the health benefits of including copper in the diet include:

1.       Normal functioning of connective tissues

Copper is necessary for the formation of collagen which is the most prevalent protein fiber in the body and the most abundant fibers in the connective tissues. These are responsible for the structural features and appearance you get and copper promotes all these processes.

2.       Normal functioning of the skeletal and nervous systems

It plays a role in neurotransmitter synthesis and in the transmission of nerve impulses. Copper is also involved in myelin sheath formation. Myelin sheaths coat the nerve axons providing insulation so that the impulse generated is not lost into the surrounding cells and tissues.

Without copper, our nerve endings would be less sensitive than they are and our response rates would be much slower. We would be all functioning like an outdated computer system.

3.       Normal functioning of the immune systems

Copper also helps maintain a healthy white blood cell count and prevent neutropenia. People with neutropenia have a weakened defense system and are more likely to get infected upon exposure to pathogens. Adequate copper supplementation has been proven to rapidly restore the number and function of T lymphocytes.

During pathogen invasion, the body increases the production of white blood cells to fight the invaders. Having adequate copper at all times will ensure this process is not inhibited and that your body is competent enough to protect you whenever pathogens attack.

4.       Red blood cell formation

Copper in conjunction with iron is necessary for the formation of red blood cells and hemoglobin pigment that binds oxygen for transportation. Cooper is a cofactor in enzymatic directions for red blood cells formation and iron absorption in the small intestines.

 5.       Prevent bone defects

Copper has anti-inflammatory effects that help keep the bone healthy. This maintains the integrity of the bone cells that maintain healthy bones.

More importantly, however, is the formation of collagen. Collagen is a primary factor in bone composition and structure. So is it for bone health. Copper, therefore, helps maintain a strong bone structure by the formation and maintenance of the collagen fiber in it.

Copper also serves as a cofactor for the enzymes involved in cross-linking collagen fibers. Cross-linking occurs in certain connective tissues for enhanced strength in the interwoven model.

6.       Essential for metabolism

Copper, as already discussed is concentrated in organs with high energy demands this is because it enhances the rate of metabolism. The release of ATP inside the mitochondria depends on the involvement of copper-containing enzymes. Copper ensures efficiency in the energy-yielding reactions occurring within the cell.

7.       Oxidizes and destroys free radical 

Within the cell, as it serves to enable energy-yielding reactions, copper also acts as an antioxidant. It oxidizes free radicals produced by the process of energy metabolism and keeps the cell safe from these toxic highly reactive atom species.

8.       Melanin formation

Melanocytes produce melanin in the presence of the enzyme tyrosinase without which the process if impaired and albinism develops. Tyrosinase is a cuproenzyme meaning that copper is part of its chemical structure. with adequate amounts, then melanin production is favored but in deficiencies, it is greatly hindered increasing the risk of damage from ultra-violet rays.

Copper also benefits the skin in other ways such as collagen production which maintains the structure of the skin.

It is also useful in wound dressing as it enhances skin regeneration, blood vessel formation and has antimicrobial properties to the healing wound.

 

The recommended daily intakes

Birth to 6 months* 200mcg

7–12 months* 220 220

1–3 years 340 340

4–8 years 440 440

9–13 years 700 700

14–18 years 890 890 1000 1300

19–30 years 900 900 1000 1300

31–50 years 900 900 1000 1300

51+ years 900 900

Copper deficiency

Clinical copper deficiency is a rare occurrence unless one is greatly undernourished.

Some of the factors that could contribute to such a situation include chronic diarrhea, impaired nutrient absorption due to conditions affecting the intestines like Crohn’s disease and irritable bowel syndromes.

There is also a high intake of iron and zinc. Zinc especially is observed to have a significant impact on the absorption rate of copper. The optimum ratio for intake of copper and zinc is 1:10. Exceeding this steeply reduces the amount of copper taken up by the body.

On the same note, other nutrients can increase its absorption rate and help keep out deficiencies. Such include boron, ascorbic acid, selenium, manganese, and molybdenum. The better news is Vitaminfood vegan meal replacement shakes contain all the nutrients your body needs. All these listed above are present. Make us your one-stop shop for all your nutrients and reap the maximum health benefits of complete nutrition.

 

Signs and symptoms include

  • Fatigue
  • Increased susceptibility to infection – as discussed above, copper plays a key role in the immune defenses and in the case of a deficiency, the immune system is greatly affected.
  • Bleeding under the skin
  • Damaged blood vessels
  • Hair loss
  • Pale skin
  • Enlarged heart

 Copper toxicity

In large doses (exceeding 10000mg/day), copper is also toxic. All intake and supplementation should be kept below that amount for adults and even lower for younger people. The period should also be regulated and frequent tests are done to avoid exceeding its efficacy levels in the body.

People with Wilson’s disease should abstain from copper supplements and copper high diets. This is a rare condition in which copper accumulates in the liver and brain causing complications there. It is also an inherited condition so it is wise to seek counsel if there is family history.

In these toxic levels, copper leads to nausea, diarrhea and vomiting, anemia, kidney damage and even death in extreme and undetected levels.

 

Vitaminfood is the choice for regular adequate copper supply. Copper, as we have seen is essential for normal body functioning. For bodybuilders, it is a plus for collagen formation. Get enough of it with Vitaminfood meal replacement shakes and protein shakes. Order now to get your copper supply.

 

References:

1. https://copperalliance.org.uk/knowledge-base/education/education-resources/copper-essential-human-health/

2.             https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/288165#:~:text=Copper%20is%20an%20essential%20nutrient,cardiovascular%20disease%20and%20osteoporosis%2C%20too.

3.  https://selfhacked.com/blog/copper/