The benefits of phosphorus supplementation are undeniably remarkable, yet some suffer from phosphorus deficiency. This causes concerns. Why the seemingly lax attitude towards this essential mineral? I put it down to the fact that although nearly everyone has heard of phosphorus, hardly would you find a person who can mention just five benefits it offers the body.
Also, most do not know the foods that supply phosphorus to the body, and so may be eating wrongly. Let us look at what phosphorus is, highlight the foods richest in phosphorus, and check out five impressive benefits of phosphorus supplementation. Here we go.
What Is Phosphorus?
Phosphorus is a naturally occurring mineral that is necessary for your daily cellular activities. All of your vital organs, be it the liver, brain, kidneys, and heart, as well as the skeletal structure, rely on this crucial mineral to function properly.
When it comes to abundance, phosphorus is second only to calcium in the body. It is usually available in large amounts, making up 0.5% in infants and a whopping 1% in adults.
Apart from the support to the skeleton and the vital organs, phosphorus has a couple of other benefits. It contains phosphate, a unique salt making up the phosphoric acid, as well as helps to synthesize the chief macronutrients in our foods, which are fats, proteins, and carbohydrates.
Top 12 Food Sources Of Phosphorus
Supplementing with phosphorus may not be necessary if you have access to certain foods, although this doesn’t negate the significance of supplements. Let us look at the 12 richest food sources of phosphorus you can find.
- Sunflower seeds—¼ cup: 388 mg
- Canned salmon—3 ounces: 322 mg
- Cheese—¼ cup: 189 – 306 mg, according to its kind
- Teff grain—1 cup: 302 mg
- Dark meat chicken—1 cup: 262 mg
- Sheep’s milk—1 cup: 387 mg
- Potatoes—1 with skin: 220 mg
- White/pink beans—¼ cup: 202 – 216 mg
- Yogurt—1 cup: 245 mg
- Cottage cheese—1 cup: 276 mg
- Brown rice—1 cooked cup: 150 mg
- Grass-reared beef—2 ounces: 114 mg
5 Benefits Of Phosphorus Supplementation
Phosphorus offers a good range of benefits stretching across detoxification, bone fortification, and metabolism. Thus, a regular intake of phosphorus supplements, especially if you suffer from its deficiency, will offer the following benefits to your body.
Fortification Of Bone Health
Phosphorus, alongside calcium, is one of the essential minerals for maintaining bone strength and structure. As a matter of fact, more than 50% of the body’s bones are made of phosphate.
Phosphors, which are nutrients from phosphorus, help to solidify the mineral density of the bones, thus preventing bone degenerative age-related diseases, including breaks, fractures, and osteoporosis.
An absence of sufficient phosphorus in the body reduces the effectiveness of calcium in building bone structure. This is best demonstrated in the fact that abnormally high levels of calcium will cause an inability of the body to absorb phosphorus from foods.
A Means Of Detoxification
Your kidneys play numerous roles in waste removal from the body. They are charged with the flushing of unnecessary minerals, as well as relieving the blood of organic molecules, which may be harmful. So, the kidneys assist in the removal of toxins and wastes from the body, particularly through urine.
Electrolytes, such as phosphorus, magnesium, and potassium, are essential for digestive organs, including the kidneys, to balance the levels of water, fat, sodium, and uric acid in the body. Phosphates are also a necessary presence for these organs to function optimally.
Crucial For Metabolism & Nutrient Absorption
To correctly synthesize, absorb & utilize essential nutrients from foods, phosphorus must be present. It is also relevant to synthesize amino acids, to improve energy production, growth & reproduction, and cellular function.
As an addition, it assists the body to strike a balance of other nutrients, including zinc, iodine, magnesium, calcium, and vitamin D; all of which must be balanced for a healthy metabolism. In the same vein, phosphorus produces digestive enzymes that enable the conversion of nutrients into usable energy. As a result, it is a necessary presence for the tract to digest carbohydrates and fats properly.
Improves Digestion By Balancing The Levels of PH in The Body
Our biological membranes contain phospholipids, which help to filter excess levels of acid and alkali compounds, thus providing a necessary balance to the body’s PH levels. And as you may expect already, phospholipids are obtainable from phosphorus.
This improves digestion by enabling the flourish of beneficial bacteria in the gut flora. This is also necessary to activate enzymes acting as digestive catalysts — a process known as phosphorylation. Also, remember that phosphorus serves as an electrolyte, so it enhances digestion by reducing diarrhea and bloating, as well as easing constipation.
May Aid Maintenance of Dental Health
The teeth and bones are much alike when considering the nutrients essential for their development. For healthy gum and string teeth, phosphorus supplementation is necessary. Phosphorus, along with related minerals like calcium and vitamin D, assumes a relevant part in maintaining your dental health.
This is because these minerals support your tooth enamel, improve the mineral density of your jaw-bone, hold the teeth firmly in position, and even cure tooth decay.
Phosphorus and the other minerals mentioned above are most needed by kids, specifically when growing adult teeth.
Recommended Doses For Phosphorus Supplementation
The average diet contains a large amount of phosphorus, so you may not need supplements. However, when you’ve confirmed that you are phosphorus deficient, then supplementation would be recommended. Here are the appropriate doses to take according to age:
- Infants (0–6 months): 100 mg daily.
- Infants (7–12 months): 275 mg daily.
- Children (aged 1–3): 450 mg daily.
- Children (aged 4–8): 500 mg daily.
- Children, teens (aged 9–18): 1250 mg daily.
- Adults (aged 19–50): 700 mg daily.
- Pregnant/breastfeeding women: 700 mg daily.
Teens are rapidly developing in every aspect of their body, including the bones, which is why they require phosphorus the most, just as they do calcium and calories
Takeaways On The Benefits Of Phosphorus Supplementation
The benefits of phosphorus supplementation are obvious. Phosphorus is essential, no doubt, and you, therefore, need to have high levels of it all the time. Whenever you suspect a deficiency, fix an appointment with your doctor and seek medical advice.