ALFRED PASIEKA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY ALFRED PASIEKA / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Trace elements and minerals. Computer graphic of a woman's figure seen in outline, with crystals of trace elements and minerals superimposed. At top are the trace element crystals of iodine (red) and manganese (blue/brown). Iodine is essential for thyroid hormone formation, and deficiency can cause cretinism and goitre. Manganese is needed for bone metabolism and enzyme reactions. The minerals seen are magnesium (at thigh level) and potassium (shin level). Magnesium is necessary for teeth and bone formation, muscle contraction, and nerve transmission. Potassium regulates the body's water balance and maintains heart rhythm. Crystals seen under polarised light microscope.
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