The Mineral That Helps Fight Fatigue, Stress, Pain, Cancer, and Wrinkles, Too
By Dr. Mercola
Sulfur is the third most abundant mineral in your body, after calcium and phosphorous. It’s an important mineral element that you get almost wholly through dietary proteins, yet it’s been over 20 years since the U.S. Food and Nutrition Board (FNB) issued its last update on recommended daily allowances (RDA) for it.
In a study examining critical elements about how sulfur works in the body, researchers say the importance of this mineral may be underestimated, and that it’s possible that we may not be getting enough of it.
The Importance of Sulfur
Close to half of the sulfur in your body can be found in your muscles, skin and bones, but it does much more than benefit just these three areas. It plays important roles in many bodily systems.
Sulfur bonds are required for proteins to maintain their shape, and these bonds determine the biological activity of the proteins. For example, as explained in the featured MSM newsletter, hair and nails consists of a tough protein called keratin, which is high in sulfur, whereas connective tissue and cartilage contain proteins with flexible sulfur bonds, giving the structure its flexibility. With age, the flexible tissues in your body tend to lose their elasticity, leading to sagging and wrinkling of skin, stiff muscles and painful joints.
A shortage of sulfur likely contributes to these age-related problems.
MSM, an Organic Form of Sulfur
Methylsulfonylmethane, commonly known by its acronym, MSM, is not a drug. It’s an organic form of sulfur and a potent antioxidant, naturally found in many plants. While MSM is an important source of organic sulfur, it also has other unique properties. Common health complaints associated with low concentrations of MSM in your body include:
- High sensitivity to physical and psychological stress
- Degenerative diseases
MSM’s ability to neutralize inflammation is one of the greatest, and one of the most inexpensive, discoveries in the health field, and is thought to be particularly beneficial in the prevention of heart disease. It has been shown to break down the plaque in your arteries, which is associated with chronic inflammation.
Other health benefits associated with MSM include:
|Reducing chronic pain||Improving cellular uptake of many nutrients including vitamins A, B, C, D, E, amino acids, selenium, calcium, magnesium, coenzyme Q10||Preventing cancer||Reducing or eliminating muscle soreness and cramps|
|Detoxification||Alleviating symptoms of allergies||Anti-parasitic action against Giardia, Trichomonas, roundworms, nematodes, Enterobius and other intestinal worms||Improving lung function by allowing your body to more effectively take up oxygen|
|Preventing neurological disease by repairing oxidative damage and restoring cell membrane elasticity and permeability||Preventing and reducing symptoms of autoimmune diseases by fighting chronic inflammation||Preventing diabetes by promoting healthy insulin function||Increasing strength and endurance, and reducing stress|