You need zinc for many crucial functions in the body including healthy growth and development. It helps build new cells, repair damaged tissue, strengthens your immune system and is crucial to healthy vision and for male reproductive health. Find out which are the best sources.


You need small amounts of sodium so your body can conduct nerve impulses, contract and relax muscles and maintain the right balance of water and minerals in your body fluids. It’s essential for good health but we tend to have too much of it because we get a plentiful supply of sodium in salt – sodium chloride.


Selenium is an antioxidant – it protects your cell membranes and DNA from damage linked to heart disease, cancer and other diseases. It helps your thyroid gland work normally and plays a role in fertility by helping protect ovaries and sperm from free radical damage.


You need phosphorus for healthy bones and teeth. It’s an essential part of all your cells and the DNA (genetic information) contained in them. It’s also important for maintaining the right chemical balance in your body. Phosphorus also helps release energy from food. Find out which foods are best for phosphorus.


Potassium is vital for balancing fluids in your body, nerve signal transmission, heart muscle contractions and kidney health. A diet rich in potassium helps maintain good blood pressure and keeps your kidneys healthy. Find out which foods you need for potassium.


You need manganese for healthy bones, skin, cartilage, nervous system and sugar metabolism. It also plays a key role in protecting your cells from damage and keeping your immune system strong. Find out which food and drink are the best sources.


You need magnesium for your nerves and muscles to work normally, it’s also essential for a healthy immune system, steady heartbeat and strong bones. It helps regulate many body functions, keeping everything ticking over in order. Find out which foods are the best source.


You need iodine for your thyroid gland to make the thyroid hormones needed for normal growth and development. Low intake is one of the most common nutritional deficiencies and one of the most preventable causes of impaired development in children. Find out where to get iodine here.


Your body needs iron to grow and develop. It uses iron to make haemoglobin, a protein in red blood cells that carries oxygen from your lungs to all parts of your body, and myoglobin, a protein that takes oxygen to your muscles. Iron also makes up part of many other proteins in your body.