Sulfur - Benefits, Deficiency Symptoms And Food Sources
What is Sulfur?
An acid-forming mineral that is part of the chemical structure of the amino acids methionine, cysteine, taurine, and glutathione, sulfur disinfects the blood, helps the body to resist bacteria, and protects the protoplasm of cells. It aids in necessary oxidation reactions in the body, stimulates bile secretion, and protects against toxic substances. Because of its ability to protect against the harmful effects of radiation and pollution, sulfur slows the aging process. It is found in all body tissues, and is needed for the synthesis of collagen, a principal protein that gives the skin its structural integrity.
Uses and Benefits of Sulfur
The average human body contains about 1 teaspoon of sulfur. You may know sulfur as the mineral that gives rotten eggs their distinctive smell. Sulfur is necessary for the formation of hair, nails, cartilage and tissue. It is needed for metabolism and a healthy nervous system, plus it aids bile secretion in the liver.
Recommended Dosage of Sulfur
There is no official Recommended Dietary Allowance or Dietary Reference Intake for this mineral but as a guideline, you need more than 100 mg of sulfur per day.
Deficiency Symptoms of Sulfur.
Sulfur deficiency is only found in conjunction with protein deficiency, and can be alleviated by increasing protein consumption.
Rich Food Sources of Sulfur
Brussels sprouts, dried beans, cabbage, eggs, fish, garlic, kale, meats, onions, soybeans, turnips, and wheat germ contain sulfur, as do the herb horsetail and the amino acids cysteine, cystine, lysine, and methionine. Sulfur is also available in tablet and powder forms. Methylsufonylmethane (MSM) is a good form of sulfur.
Cautions and side effects of Sulfur
Moisture and heat may destroy or change the action of sulfur in the body. Sulfur is one of the key substances that makes garlic the "king of herbs." Excess sulfur is excreted in urine, so is essentially non-toxic.
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