Minerals for cyclists

Minerals are something that many of us tend to forget but there is a reason why professional athletes looks so fit and healthy. We can not stress the importance of these essential beauties which can little transform your life if you are deficient or not getting enough of one of them.

Cycle training can be tough on your body so before you start a programme make sure you know your minerals. Here is a list of the e key minerals that you should be aware of. We recommend that if you have any concerns or questions about your body and diet that you consult your GP or a health care professional.

Calcium is required to build and maintain strong bones and is also essential for muscle function and nerve transmission.

Chromium is important in the metabolism of carbohydrates and fats - it stimulates fatty acid and cholesterol synthesis, for example, which are important for healthy brain function and other essential body processes.

Copper (as well as iron) helps in the formation of red blood cells. It also helps maintain the health of blood vessels, bones, nerves and the immune system.

Iodine is needed for the normal metabolism of cells and for the transformation of the food we eat into energy.

Iron is required for the formation of haemoglobin and myoglobin, the oxygen-carrying components of red blood cells and muscle cells respectively. It is also required for certain reactions to take place that provide the body with the energy it requires to move.

Magnesium mainly exists in bones and muscles and supports the contraction and relaxation of muscles, and energy metabolism. Numerous studies have concluded that magnesium deficiency reduces endurance and aerobic capacity.

Manganese is less known than other minerals but plays an essential role in helping the body utilise key nutrients, keeping bones strong and healthy, maintaining normal blood sugar levels and in synthesising fatty acids and cholesterol.

Potassium is a mineral that works with sodium (also a mineral that can be added to this list) to balance the fluids and electrolyte levels in your body. And since steady fluid levels help regulate your heartbeat and prevent your muscles from cramping, getting enough potassium (and sodium) is of particular importance to runners.

Zinc is essential for normal growth, immune system function and the production of energy by our cells.