Mineral metabolism disorders are abnormal levels of minerals -- either too much or too little -- in the blood.
Minerals are very important for the human body. They have various roles in metabolism and body functions. They are essential for the proper function of cells, tissues, and organs.
Some minerals, such as iron, make up part of many proteins and enzymes in the body. Others, such as potassium, help to produce proteins from amino acids and are involved in carbohydrate metabolism. Minerals also play a role in the building of muscle and bone and are important for normal body growth.
Metabolism refers to all the physical and chemical processes in the body that create and use energy, such as:
Digesting food and nutrients
Eliminating waste through urine and feces
Disorders of mineral metabolism are sometimes passed from parents to their children through genes. Other medical conditions, such as starvation, diarrhea, or alcoholism, can cause mineral metabolism problems.
Minerals that play a large role in the body include:
David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.