|MadSci Network: Medicine|
The essential nutrients/minerals that are required include sodium, potassium, calcium, magnesium, iron, zinc, iodine, phosphorus, and selenium. I am unsure if the ability to absorb such nutrients declines with age, and looking through some standard texts (1-3) and doing a Medline search (where one can search the medical literature for published materials) there has been no reference that such an effect occurs (which does not mean that it doesn’t). Nonetheless, the Australian recommended dietary intakes (RDIs) for the above minerals are the same for both young and older adults, thus indicating that absorbtion may not vary all that significantly. (Note: RDIs are levels of intake of nutrients which are adequate to meet the known nutritional needs of practically all healthy people; and generously exceed the actual nutrient requirements to accommodate individual variations in absorbtion and metabolism). I include below, the Australian RDIs for the minerals mentioned above (3), and I hope they help (sorry but they are in metric measure - might have to convert). Most supplements usually exceed the RDIs (and can vary significantly). Regards, Dave 1. Berkow R, ed. The Merck Manual 16th ed. Rahway: Merck, 1992. 2. Stein JH, ed. Internal medicine 4th ed. St Louis: Mosby, 1994; 852-63. 3. National Health and Medical Research Council. Recommended dietary intakes for use in Australia. Fyshwick: Australian Government Publishing Service, 1992. Mineral RDIs for Australian Men (3) RDIs for Australian Women (3) 19-64 years 19-54 yrs 54+ yrs Sodium (mmol) 40-100 40-100 Potassium (mmol) 50-140 50-140 Calcium (mg) 800 800 1000 Magnesium (mg) 320 270 Iron (mg) 7 12-16 5-7 Zinc (mg) 12 12 Iodine (mcg) 150 120 Phosphorus (mg) 1000 1000 Selenium (mcg) 85 70
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