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Michael Roizen, MD, Internal Medicine, answeredA number of minerals are found in either large or trace amounts in our bodies, all of which are necessary for basic metabolic function. Magnesium, potassium, sodium, chloride, sulfur, and phosphorus are, like calcium, needed in relatively large quantities. Usually, our food provides sufficient quantities of all these minerals; in the case of sodium, we may get far more than we need. Minerals that we need in trace amounts include chromium, copper, cobalt, iodine, iron, fluoride, manganese, molybdenum, selenium, and zinc. Our bodies demand these in much smaller amounts, and we generally get them from our diet. Although silicon, vanadium, nickel, lithium, cadmium, and boron are other trace minerals we seem to need, science knows much less about these.