The Four Most Commonly Deficient Minerals

The Four Most Commonly Deficient Minerals

woman eating fruitI was flipping through one of my many books and came across some very interesting information.

Many of you know that sometimes we may become deficient in certain minerals. In order to avoid becoming deficient, it is a good idea that you eat a variety of foods.

Dr. Bernard Jensen, author of Foods That Heal, found that his patients had four chemical elements of which deficiencies existed.

The four elements were calcium, iodine, silicon, and sodium. There are foods that are high in these minerals that can be added into your meal plan.

He believed that most people were slightly to seriously deficient in these chemical elements and that many unnecessary health problems occurred as a result.


High sources of calcium are found in sesame seeds, dulse, Irish moss, kelps and greens. Foods high in calcium listed below:

  • agar, almonds, avocados, barley, beet greens, beans, blackstrap molasses, bran, brazil nuts, broccoli, brown rice, Brussels sprouts, buckwheat, butter, raw, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, cheeses:  hard and cottage; raw, chia seeds, coconut, cornmeal (yellow), cream (raw), dandelion greens, dulse, egg yolk, figs, filberts, fish, gelatin, greens, Irish moss, kelp, kohlrabi, lentils, milk: goat and cow; raw, millet, oats, onions, parsnips, prunes, rice polish, rye, sesame seeds, soy milk, veal joint jelly or broth, walnuts, watercress, wheat (whole).


Kelp and dulse (Nova Scotia) are high in iodine.  Foods high in iodine listed below:

  • agar, artichokes, asparagus, bass, beans, blueberries, Brussels sprouts, cardamom, carrots, chervil, chives, coconut, cucumber, eggplant, fish, fish roe, garlic, goat cottage cheese, goat milk, whey, green peppers, green turtle, haddock, halibut, herring, kale, leaf lettuce, loganberries, mustard greens, oats (steel cuts), okra, onions (green and dried), oysters (raw), peanuts, perch, pike, potatoes (sweet and white), quail, rutabaga, salsify, seaweed, silver salmon, sole, spinach, squash, strawberries, Swiss chard, tofu, tomato (ripe), trout, tuna, turnips, turnip greens, watercress, watermelon.


Oats and barley are very high in silicon foods. Foods high in silicon listed below:

  • alfalfa broth and tea, apples, apricots, asparagus, bananas, barley, beans, beets, beet greens, cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, celery, cherries, corn, cucumbers, dandelion greens, dates, figs (dried), grains, greens (mustard and turnip), horseradish, kelp, kohlrabi, lettuce, marjoram,millet, nectarines, oats, onions, parsnips, plums, potatoes (sweet), pumpkin, raisins, rice (brown and wild), rice bran and syrup, rice polishings, spinach, sprouted seeds strawberries, sunflower seeds, tomatoes (ripe), turnip, watermelon, wheat bran, wheat germ, whole wheat.


Foods that have a fair amounts of sodium include other cabbage, water chestnuts, garlic, peaches (dried), radishes, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, and cashews. Foods high in sodium listed below:

  • apples, apricots (dried), asparagus, barley, beets and greens, cabbage (red), carrots, celery, cheeses, chick-peas (dried), dandelion greens, dates, dulse, egg yolks, figs, fish, goat milk, horseradish, Irish moss, kale, kelp, lentils, milk (raw), mustard greens, okra, olives (black), parsley, peas (dried), peppers (hot red and dried), prunes, raisins, sesame seeds, spinach, strawberries, sunflower seeds, Swiss chard, turnips, veal joint broth, whey.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, some foods show up more than once on the lists.  Remember to always eat a variety of foods.  This way you try different foods, don’t get bored and you get what you need.

*There are some animal foods listed.  If you are a vegetarian/vegan, stick with the plant-based foods.

Information Source

The information for this post is found in Foods That Heal by Dr. Bernard Jensen (pages 39-44).

Image: Sura Nualpradid /



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About the Author

Evelyn Parham started this site in 2010. She enjoys writing, reading, and dabbling in photography and video editing. Learn more about her here.

18 Enlightened Replies

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  1. Robyn (GirlonRaw) says:

    Interesting list but I really find the sodium one hard to believe as a common deficiency. I’m going to look further into that.

  2. Tatianna says:

    I’ve been hearing about the book you mentioned ” Foods That Heal “, now I have to read it so I can expand my knowledge of nutrition. I love all the foods you listed, I eat a huge variety of foods daily and I take a multivitamin on top of it.

    Thank you for all the great information you are sharing here on your blog!

  3. david says:

    I am not aware of this information, I used to think that calcium is the most important mineral that our bodies need.

    • Hey David,

      This is information that Dr. Jensen found in his patients. I would say this was some years ago. I thought it was interesting to share, especially the list of foods.

      Calcium is important, it is needed for quite a few chemical reactions in our bodies. Too much can lead to other things, like osteopoorsis (woman issue). Sounds crazy huh?

      Thanks for stopping by!


  4. The last entry, i.e. Sodium has surprised me. We know excess Sodium intake is one of the several causes of hypertension (as it can increase osmolarity of blood) and hypertension is so common these days. Calcium is also abundant, but may sometime case deficiency problem.
    Great info.

    • Hey Jupitor,

      Sodium was surprising to me too. Even though Dr. Jensen’s findings were from years ago. I know for this day and time, sodium should not be an issue with most people.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  5. kathy says:

    Hey Evelyn,

    Can always count on learning something new here, thanks for that. I had no idea that silicon was important! Since I eat lots of what is listed I should be good to go. I did suffer from anemia when I was younger, too much party time and fast foods. Once those days were gone my anemia subsided!

    Have a great weekend.

    • Hey Kathy,

      Yeah, I take a hair, skin and nails supplement and silicon is one of the key minerals listed on the label.

      That’s good that the anemia went away.

      I appreciate you stopping by and sharing.

      Have a great weekend too!

  6. Jo says:

    Thanks for sharing this valuable information Evelyn!We are big fans of Dr.Jensen, my husband read a lot of his stuff in his Naturopathy education.

  7. Michelle says:

    hmm I should be good on all of these. I eat a lot of foods from all the groups. I got a physical done and will get the results soon. I know they’re going to say I need to lose weight. I know I do. I just hope the rest is good (ex: cholesterol)

  8. Carolyn says:

    Evelyn, great post! These four are on my list and the article is very informative. I totally agree that iron deficiency anemia is common with African American women and I use to suffer from anemia, but no more. I need to buy Dr. Jensen’s book! 🙂 Thank you, Evelyn, for always giving great information.

    • Thanks, Ms. Carolyn!

      I am glad you stopped by and chimed in.

      This is what is on the cover: A Guide to Understanding and Using the Healing Powers of Natural Foods – Unlocking the Remarkable Secrets of Eating Right for Health, Vitality and Longevity. Just wanted to share that. It’s a very good book, one of my reference books. 😉

      I’m enjoying your great information and newsletters too!

  9. Amanda says:

    This is a good list, but the problem with a general list is that it misses common deficiencies among certain groups. Calcium deficiency is high among both pregnant and older women. Iron deficiency is common during pregnancy but also among vegetarian populations. It’s almost unheard of among men. You start getting into silicon and I wonder if there is even an agreed-upon blood test for it.

    • Hi Amanda,

      I am aware that other deficiencies exist, but in this post I was only sharing the ones that Dr. Jensen shared in his book. I found it interesting that Dr. Jensen found 4 mineral deficiencies that his patients all had in common.

      Iron deficiency / anemia is also common in African-American women. When it comes to silicon, sometimes when people are having issues with their integumentary system, they may be deficient in silicon. I’m not sure about a blood test for silicon, but I’m sure there’s some type of test out here.

      It is so good to know that we can get what we need from our food.

      Well, thanks for sharing!

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