Journal of Nutrition, Food and Lipid Science

Opinion Article

Soil Conservation Urgently Required to Cope with the Problem of Mineral Deficiency in Food and Water

Ramesh Kumar Sharma*

Freelance Writer on Food and Environment Issues in Chemistry, Bikaner, Rajasthan, India

Received: 08 July 2019

Accepted: 17 July 2019

Version of Record Online: 29 July 2019

Citation

Sharma RK (2019) Soil Conservation Urgently Required to Cope with the Problem of Mineral Deficiency in Food and Water. J Nutr Food Lipid Sci 2019(1): 84-85.

Correspondence should be addressed to
Ramesh Kumar Sharma, India

E-mail: rksharma.writer@rediffmail.com
DOI: 10.33513/NFLS/1901-09

Copyright

Copyright © 2019 Ramesh Kumar Sharma. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and work is properly cited.

Scientific Writer, Food and Environment Issues

The ample availability of naturally produced nutrient rich safe food and clean water - not only underground but on surface too - is nowadays rarely observed, perhaps in some islands or places which are almost isolated from population and normal human activities. Today, anti-environment lifestyle is dominating our earth. And pro-ecology human activities are rarely observed, perhaps in lonely places, where soil is till to date well conserved and yields mineral-enriched clean water and mineral-vitamin-enriched safe food. Both the climate and the soil have changed very much, and consequently water and food are stripped of their nutritional value due to being deficient in mineral and vitamin contents as the consequence of anti-environment lifestyles leading to vast deforestation. In this complicated situation, the nutrition business has tremendously grown up. The health and nutrition business houses, nowadays, are advocating not only the supplementation of nutrients - minerals and vitamins - as drugs, but also fortification of food articles stripped of their nutritional value by climate change and desertification of soil. In this context, there appears a need to underline the exact process of significant food fortification.

To fortify foods manufacturers may add nutrients that were not originally present or were removed during processing. These additional nutrients help people meet their nutrient needs and prevent nutrient deficiencies. Consumption of fortified foods should be in addition to balanced diet that includes a variety of naturally nutritious foods,’ Natalie Stein’s these words underline the significance of food fortification [1]. But beyond the limits of significant fortification, nowadays, when naturally nutritious foods and groundwater are rarely found due to mineral and vitamin deficiency as a consequence of climate change and soil deterioration, the addition of multi-minerals and multivitamins to nutrient deficient foods is advised by health and nutrition business houses. Of course, the enlisted fortified foods, based on originally absent nutrients and in-process lost nutrients, are quite limited; salt fortified with iodine, refined grains fortified with B vitamins and iron, milk fortified with calcium, processed cereals fortified with minerals and vitamins and infant formulas fortified with iron, vitamin K and omega-3 fatty acids [1]. The fortified foods are not substitute of balanced diet. But today’s so-called balanced diet is low in several important nutrients like iron, iodine, calcium, magnesium and vitamin D, B12 and A; these seven nutrients deficiencies are incredibly common among foods considered part and parcel of balanced diet [2]. However, it does not mean that foods might be fortified to any extent.

Minerals, as elements, cannot be biochemically synthesized by living organisms; plants get minerals from soil and most of the minerals in a human diet come from plants, animals (which get minerals by eating plants and animals) and naturally stored groundwater or river water (reverse osmosis water is not good source of minerals) [3]. On the other hand, some of the vitamins are enzymatically synthesized in the body. But humans have to depend on diet for obtaining vitamins too, either because organism does not have the enzymes necessary to synthesize them or because it cannot produce them in sufficient quantities [4]. It is believed that human cannot synthesize vitamins A, B1, B2, B5, B6, B7, B9, B12, E and K but are able to synthesize vitamin B3 and D [5]. The dependence of human being for nutrients, totally for minerals and partially for vitamins, on diet, underlines the importance of natural process of mineral fortification of food and water. That is why soil minerals are called nature’s sunken treasure for health and fertility; they do not help only plants but help human health too, and their shortage or marked imbalance means malnutrition, fungal and viral attack, debilitation and the onset of degenerative metabolic diseases [6].

The physiological functions of four major nutrient minerals iron, iodine, calcium and magnesium are well known. But role of micro-nutrient minerals in maintenance of human wellness and fitness is worth understanding. It is said that vanadium and chromium are the keys to enzymes that determine glucose tolerance, cobalt is essential to prevent undulant fever in human beings and brucellosis in cattle, selenium acts as antioxidant and protects body against cancer, copper annihilates all parasites and intestinal worms, silver plays a role in stomping out infections, molybdenum functions to expunge waste from the body, platinum figures in dealing with PMS (pre-menstrual syndrome) and circulation, and perhaps the 92 elements - natural, not manmade - inappreciable or trace amounts are essential for well-functioning of body [6]. Soils remain ever enriched with minerals, when are conserved by dense bio-diversified forests. The process of deforestation leads to situations of floods and famine, and heavy heterogeneous rains take up minerals from soil and deliver it to oceans. However, minerals might be extracted from oceans and their useful concerned compounds might be synthetically prepared. But minerals - particularly chromium and vanadium - function badly as synthetics, and function best when delivered by plant life [6]. Therefore, the author opines that soil is the best source of minerals and it should be conserved by dense bio-diversified forests. The mineral content of groundwater and food articles might be ensured by the state of conservation of soil. This situation demands dense bio-diversified forestation.

Fortunately, nowadays, some mineral supplementation enterprises, like Mineral Resource International, are focusing on soil conservation in isolated islands or lonely places to enrich the mineral contents of water of lakes existing there. It is said that at least 72 out of the total 92 naturally occurring elements in the periodic table are required for proper human body maintenance; these elements can be suitably absorbed from food and water belonging to conserved soils waters. United States’ Utah lake water is one of such excellent examples [7,8]. Managed cooperatively by the Utah Division of Forestry Fire and State Lands and the Utah Lake Commission, the Utah Lake is owned by the state by virtue of its sovereignty [9]. On the basis of this discussion, the author of this paper expresses his opinion that excellent forest management in some islands or lonely places to manage soil conservation to get mineral enriched water is a drop-in ocean. In fact, the great human endeavour is urgently required for dense bio-diversified forestation of the entire earth planet to cope with the looming large problem of minerals deficiency in food and water, and consequent health crisis.

References

  1. Stein N (2018) List of fortified foods. SF GATE, © HEARST, USA.
  2. Bjarnadottir A (2019) 7 nutrient deficiencies that are incredibly common. Healthline, New York, USA.
  3. Micronutrient Information Centre (2016) ‘Minerals’. Micronutrient Information Centre, Linus Pauling Institute, Oregon State University, Corvallis, USA.
  4. Combs GF (2008) The vitamins: fundamental aspects in nutrition and health. Elsevier, San Diego, USA.
  5. Drouin G, Godin JR, Page B (2011) The genetics of vitamin C loss in vertebrates. Current Genomics 12: 371-378.
  6. Walters C (2005) Soil minerals: nature’s sunken treasure for health and fertility. Eco-Farming Daily, Acres USA.
  7. Minerals Resource International (2012) Minerals for All. Minerals Resource International, MFA Marketing Pvt Limited, New Delhi, India.
  8. Sharma RK (2017) Suggestion for establishment of minimum limits for constituent minerals in drinking water. J Fertil Pestic 8: 1-3.
  9. Utah State Code. Utah Division of Forestry, Fire & State Lands, Utah, USA.
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