Trace Minerals – Boron
(By Yip Suting, Guardian Pharmacist)
What is boron?
Boron is trace mineral that is thought to affect the metabolism of other minerals in the body such as magnesium and phosphorus. Boron also affects the handling of calcium in the body by assisting in vitamin D synthesis. Besides, boron may assist in hormone production, e.g. estrogen.
What are the natural sources of boron?
Boron can be obtained naturally from food sources such as green leafy vegetables, fruits (e.g. grapes, apples), nuts and beans.
What are the signs of boron deficiency?
While boron deficiency is rare, it has been shown to affect mineral metabolism and can cause excessive urinary excretion of magnesium and calcium. Excessive calcium and magnesium loss can subsequently lead to osteoporosis.
Are there any contraindications with boron intake?
Boron is not recommended for use in kidney patients or those with hormone sensitive conditions, e.g. breast, uterine, ovarian cancer, endometriosis or uterine fibroid
Are both boron and boric acid related?
Boron in the form of borax (sodium borate) or boric acid has been used as antiseptic, pesticides, buffering agent fire retardant, etc.