Common micronutrients include vitamins such as vitamin C, A and D, as well as minerals such as fluoride, selenium and sodium. Additional micronutrients are iodine, copper and zinc, in addition to the B-complex vitamins, magnesium and manganese.
The body only needs small quantities of micronutrients to remain healthy, but they are essential. Sodium helps maintain the correct amount of fluid in the body and regulates pH levels in the blood. Magnesium is important for maintaining heart health and helping the body convert blood sugar into energy, as well as assisting in metabolizing other micronutrients such as calcium and vitamin C. Manganese assists in metabolizing the macronutrients' protein, carbohydrates and fat, in addition to helping form healthy bones and producing energy. Iodine is important for maintaining and developing a healthy thyroid gland.
Not getting enough micronutrients can lead to a deficiency that causes health problems. Common micronutrient deficiencies include vitamin A deficiency, as well as iodine and iron deficiency. Iodine deficiency is one of the top causes of brain damage, while vitamin A deficiency is one of the top causes of blindness in children. Iodine deficiency in pregnant women can cause a miscarriage. Iron deficiency is the most common micronutrient deficiency and affects more than 30 percent of the world's population.