On this page, we would like to give you some interesting information about water, salt and minerals...
Every naturally occurring mineral (or element) has been found in seawater!
Some, however, have minuscule dissolved concentrations, like: Iron, 0.06 parts per billion (ppb) - Lead, 0.002 ppb - Gold, 0.005 ppb - Protactinium, 0.00000005 ppb.
These are the most common and important minerals in living organisms.
|Element||Atomic symbol||Atomic number||Atomic mass||% of human weight||Functions of life|
|Oxigen||O||8||16.0||65||Part of water and most organic molecules. Also molecular oxigen.|
|Carbon||C||6||12.0||18||The backbone of all organic molecules.|
|Hydrogen||H||1||1.0||10||Part of all organic molecules and of water.|
|Nitrogen||N||7||14.0||3||Component of proteins and nucleic acids.|
|Calcium||Ca||20||40.1||2||Constituent of bone. Also essential for the action of nerves and muscles.|
|Phosphorus||P||15||31.0||1||Part of cell membranes and of energy storage molecules. Also a constituent of bone.|
|Potassium||K||19||39.1||0.3||Important in nerve action.|
|Sulfur||S||16||32.1||0.2||Structural component of most proteins.|
|SODIUM||Na||11||23.0||0.1||The primary ion in body fluids. Also important for nerve action.|
|CHLORINE||Cl||17||35.5||0.1||Component of digestive acid. Also a major ion in body fluids.|
|Magnesium||Mg||12||24.3||Trace||Important for the action of certain enzymes and for muscle contraction.|
|Iron||Fe||26||5.8||Trace||A constituent of Hemoglobin, the Oxigen-carrying molucule.|
The elements are listed in descending order of their contribution to total body weight.
Atomic numbers represents the number of protons in the nucleus. Atomic mass is roughly equivalent to the total number of protons and neutrons because electrons have very little mass.
Note that 99 % of your weight is accounted for by just six minerals or elements!