Mineral Nutrients

Mineral Nutrients

Definition of Mineral Nutrient

Naturally occurring inorganic nutrients in the food and soil essential for the proper functioning of the plant and animal body

More About Mineral Nutrient

  • Minerals are among the essential elements required by the body including carbohydrates, proteins, fats, vitamins and water
  • Though required in minute quantities, minerals are essentially required by both the plants and animals
  • Plants obtain them from the soil through roots. There are about 16 minerals nutrients. These are required for a healthy plant growth. If they are not available in the required concentrations in the soil, fertilisers are added to soil for enriching the mineral supply
  • Minerals such as Sodium, Calcium, Magnesium, Phosphorous, Chlorine, Sulphur and Potassium are required in abundance when compared to others and hence are termed as major minerals
  • Minerals such as Iron, Zinc, Boron, Molybdenum, Nickel, Iodine, Manganese, Cobalt and Copper are required in very minute quantities and hence are known as “trace elements” or minor minerals
  • Each of the mineral has a specific function and play vital role in the metabolic processes

For Example: 

  • Zinc is essential for protein manufacturing and cell division
  • Iodine is essential for synthesis of the thyroid hormone called Thyroxin
  • Potassium functions as an electrolyte and helps in fluid balance
  • Minerals form about 4% of body weight in humans
  • The minerals are obtained by the food we eat and hence are known as dietary minerals
  • Deficiency or excess of the minerals in the diet causes diseased condition in plants as well as animals
  • Mineral deficiency diseases such as

- Deficiency of Iron causes Anaemia
- Deficiency of Calcium and Phosphorous causes osteoporosis, osteomalacia
- Potassium deficiency causes hyperkalemia
- In addition , sterility, hypogonadism, dwarfism, goitre and dermatitis also occur due to mineral deficiency in humans

  • Deficiency of minerals in plants results in chlorosis, necrosis, stunted growth, and weathering

Questions based on Mineral Nutrient:

1) Deficiency of which of the following mineral causes Anaemia?

a) Cobalt
b) Iodine
c) Potassium
d) Iron

Solution: (d) Iron deficiency causes Anaemia

2) Which of the following mineral helps in the protein manufacturing process?

a) Iron
b) Nickel
c) Zinc
d) Iodine

Solution: (c) Zinc is essential for protein manufacturing and cell division.

3) Some minerals are also known as “trace elements”.

a) True
b) False

Solution: (a) Some mineral elements are required in minute quantities and hence are also known as “trace elements”.