Copper is a mineral found in foods such as vegetables, legumes, beans, whole grains, and nuts and seeds. This mineral is needed in all bodily tissues, so without the proper amount of copper multiple bodily processes would suffer. For those who do not receive sufficient amounts of copper in their diets, supplements are offered.
There are multiple benefits an appropriate amount of copper has on the body. First of all, the human body requires copper for normal growth and development. Since copper is needed in every bodily tissue, without it growth and development would decline. Copper also plays a huge role in the formation of connective tissues. This mineral is a key component of collagen synthesis, which is a structural protein. Collagen provides for strong and healthy nails, hair, tendons, ligaments, and blood vessels. Without enough copper, this tissue integration and formation can begin to deteriorate and blood vessels or even bones can become weak and eventually break. Having strong bones also helps prevent against diseases such as osteoporosis and osteoarthritis.
Copper also plays a big role in increasing energy production. In order for the body to synthesize adenosine triphosphate (ATP), which is the main source of cellular energy, copper is required. ATP is the backbone of every process humans undergo, so copper proves to be of utmost importance. Not only does copper promote energy production by affecting ATP, but it also aids the transportation of iron to red blood cells. This allows red blood cells to properly oxygenate the body, and as a result, reduces weakness and possible anemia.
Incorporating copper into one’s everyday diet also boosts the body’s immunity and antioxidant protection. Copper is important in the healing processes of the body and so it allows for wound healing to occur. Copper also allows for the synthesis of the enzyme Superoxide dismutase (SOB), which is a key factor in protecting and keeping antioxidants in the body for beneficial purposes.
As with anything, there are risks with having too much copper in the body. In fact, copper is actually toxic when in large amounts and so nausea, vomiting, dizziness, kidney damage, and diarrhea can result when excess of this mineral is consumed.
Research done by: Ms. Jennifer Duffy