Mineral Requirements for Cognitive and Physical Performance of Military Personnel

Type: Consensus Study
Topics: Diseases, Food and Nutrition, Public Health, Select Populations and Health Equity, Military and Veterans Health
Board: Food and Nutrition Board

Activity Description

The committee reviewed essential minerals and their potential effects in military performance, whether directly or indirectly, by preventing illnesses that could affect physical and cognitive performance.  The committee also reviewed acute effects of minerals on health aspects that could impact performance, such as prophylactic benefits in diarrheal diseases and infections. Among these minerals, zinc is of particular interest. In addition to zinc, the study identified minerals of most importance for military performance and evaluated the potential for mineral deficiencies in specific military situations.

In addition, the study assessed the adequacy of current mineral levels in military rations and recommended new levels when appropriate. The mechanism of actions and physiological effects of interactions, including neural pathway interactions, were considered.

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