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The Top 15 Foods Highest in Minerals

From calcium to zinc, from iron to potassium, minerals keep your bones strong, and your body in balance.

We looked through our food lists for 8 different minerals including calcium, copper, iron, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, selenium, and zinc; and counted how many times each food appeared. We did not look at iodine since the data on iodine is too dependent on soil quality. We also didn't count sodium, since most people should avoid sodium.

The top 15 foods highest in minerals include nuts, dark leafy greens, beans, seeds, shellfish, fish, mushrooms, whole grains, low-fat dairy, beef and lamb, whole grains, avocados, cheese, dried fruits, and tofu. For more, check the extended list of mineral rich foods.


#1: Nuts
Nuts are a top source for 7 of 8 essential minerals.
These include calcium, copper, iron, phosphorus, magnesium, selenium, and zinc. Nuts are a heart healthy, cholesterol lowering snack. Since nuts are very high in calories, try not to have more than 1-2 handfuls a day. High mineral nuts include almonds, cashews, and for selenium: Brazil nuts.


#2: Beans and Lentils
Beans and Lentils are a top source for 6 of 8 essential minerals.
These include copper, iron, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, and zinc. Beans and lentils are high in fiber and a good vegetarian source of protein. High mineral beans include white beans, soy beans, chickpeas (garbanzo), and kidney beans.


#3: Dark Leafy Greens
Dark leafy greens are a top source for 6 of 8 essential minerals.
These include calcium, copper, iron, potassium, magnesium, and zinc. Dark leafy greens are a great low-calorie addition to any meal. High mineral dark leafy greens include spinach, kale, swiss chard, and turnip greens.


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#4: Fish
Fish are a top source for 5 of 8 essential minerals.
These include calcium, potassium, phosphorus, magnesium, and selenium. Fish are also a top source of protein, and heart healthy omega 3 fatty acids. Fish rich in minerals include salmon, tuna, and mackerel. For calcium, choose fish which have been canned with their bones.


#5: Seeds
Seeds are a good source for 5 of 8 essential minerals.
These include copper, iron, phosphorus, selenium, and zinc. While seeds are packed with nutrients, they are also high in calories. Try not to eat more than 1-2 handfuls a day. High mineral seeds include sunflower seeds, flax seeds, pumpkins seeds, and squash seeds.


#6: Shellfish
Shellfish are a top source for 5 of 8 essential minerals.
These include copper, iron, phosphorus, selenium, and zinc. Shellfish are also high in heart healthy omega 3 fatty acids, and vitamin b12. High mineral shellfish include oysters, scallops, mussels, and clams.


#7: Mushrooms
Mushrooms are a top source for 4 of 8 essential minerals.
These include copper, potassium, selenium, and zinc. Mushrooms are low in calories, and a flavorful addition to any dish. High mineral mushrooms include shiitake, crimini, portabella, and white button.


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#8: Whole Grains
Whole Grains are a top source for 4 of 8 essential minerals.
These include iron, phosphorus, selenium, and zinc. Whole grains are high in fiber and are a healthy source of carbohydrates. High mineral grains include oatmeal, quinoa, buckwheat, whole wheat bread, and wheat germ.


#9: Milk and Yogurt (Low Fat)
Milk and/or yogurt are a top source for 4 of 8 essential minerals.
These include calcium, potassium, phosphorus, and magnesium. For less calories and cholesterol choose low fat, unsweetened, yogurts and milks. Full fat dairy products do contain the same mineral content.


#10: Beef and Lamb
Beef and/or lamb are a top source for 4 of 8 essential minerals.
These include iron, phosphorus, selenium, and zinc. For less calories and cholesterol, choose leaner cuts of meat.


#11: Avocados
Avocados are a top source for 3 of 8 essential minerals.
These include copper, potassium, and magnesium. Avocados are full of heart healthy fats, and make a tasty addition to any salad or sandwich.


#12: Tofu
Tofu is a top source for 3 of 8 essential minerals.
These include calcium, iron, and phosphorus. Tofu is a great vegetarian source of protein. For extra calcium check for tofu or soy products fortified with calcium.


#13: Dark Chocolate and Cocoa Powder
Dark Chocolate is a top source for 3 of 8 essential minerals.
These include iron, magnesium, and zinc. For fewer calories and more minerals, choose darker types of chocolate that have less sugar. Eating 80% Cocoa and above is a good rule.


#14: Cheese
Cheese is a top source for 3 of 8 essential minerals.
These include calcium, copper, and phosphorus. For fewer calories and cholesterol choose low fat cheeses. Low fat mozzarella is particularly nutrient dense. High mineral cheeses include Parmesan, Swiss, and Mozzarella.


#15: Dried Fruit
Dried fruits are a top source for 3 of 8 essential minerals.
These include copper, potassium, and magnesium. While high in nutrients, dried fruits are also high in calories, and sugars. Try not to eat more than half a cup a day. High mineral dried fruits include apricots, prunes, raisins, figs, and dates.`




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Click each heading below for more information from HealthAliciousNess.com

In addition to those in the top 15, here are more high mineral foods which appeared on the most nutritious foods lists.
Lean Pork High in phosphorus, selenium, and zinc
Bananas High in potassium and magnesium
Broccoli High in calcium
Chicken and Turkey High in selenium
Liver High in iron
Squash High in potassium
Chinese Cabbage (Bok Choy) High in calcium
Okra High in calcium
Green Snap Beans High in calcium
Tempeh High in calcium
Baked Potatoes High in potassium

  1. USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 27.

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