Balanced Multi-Mineral Formula
- Reduces mineral deficiencies due to soil depletion and food processing
- Contains the best forms of minerals
- Contains balanced doses
- Now with vegan vitamin D3
$40.95 — or subscribe and get 15% off
Every cell in the body requires minerals. Mineral depletion may be the biggest cause of poor health, illness, and premature aging facing a substantial percentage of the population. The amounts of minerals in typical multivitamin/multimineral formulations are inadequate; for many people, a separate multimineral formula like Ortho Minerals is the best solution.
Ortho Minerals is designed to be a balanced, effective mineral supplement, providing only the best forms and optimal ratios and doses of each ingredient. Ortho Minerals contains vitamin D and 13 minerals, some of which are essential and some that are not recognized as essential but are suggested in research to have important biological effects. Due to wide spread prevalence of mineral deficiency, most people can benefit from Ortho Minerals. Extra mineral supplementation is especially important for athletes, people with tight muscles, osteoporosis and those undergoing chelation therapy.
Ortho Minerals is a balanced multi-mineral formula which includes research-supported dietary minerals with important health benefits.
AOR™ guarantees that all ingredients have been declared on the label. Contains no wheat, gluten, peanuts, sesame seeds, sulphites, mustard, dairy, eggs or any animal byproduct.
Take up to 7 capsules daily with food, or as directed by a qualified health care practitioner. Take a few hours before or after taking other medication.
Do not use if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Some people may experience diarrhea. Consult a health care practitioner for use beyond 6 months. This product contains soy and corn, do not use if you have soy and/or corn allergy.
- General health
- Mineral supplement
The information and product descriptions appearing on this website are for information purposes only, and are not intended to provide or replace medical advice to individuals from a qualified health care professional. Consult with your physician if you have any health concerns, and before initiating any new diet, exercise, supplement, or other lifestyle changes.
† Daily Value not established
Non-medical Ingredients: Microcrystalline cellulose, maltodextrin, dicalcium phosphate, silicon dioxide, sodium stearyl fumarate, citric acid, glycine, l-aspartic acid, magnesium trisilicate, rice and soy flour, tapioca dextrin and hydroxypropyl cellulose.
Optimal Mineral Supplementation
Minerals, in some ways, play a larger role in the human body than do vitamins: less than 1% of body mass is vitamins, while minerals account for 4-5%. Every cell, and every biochemical transformation in the body, requires minerals such as zinc, manganese, chromium, and selenium, in addition to health-food store standbys like calcium and magnesium. Mineral depletion may be the biggest cause of poor health, illness, and premature aging facing a substantial percentage of the population. Most North Americans face borderline mineral deficiency due to poor food choices, food processing, soil depletion from agrobusiness factory farming, and mineral antagonists such as phytic acid, oxalates, caffeine, alcohol, and refined sugars along with other high-glycemic dietary carbohydrates.
The amounts of minerals in typical multivitamin/multimineral formulations are inadequate; for many people, a separate multimineral is the best solution. When choosing a multimineral, there are several key factors you need to keep in mind.
Bring Back the Balance
Sometimes, in our excitement about the role played by a nutrient in our health, we tend to overdo it, in a “more is better” mentality. It’s easy to fall into this trap – and it can lead to disastrous consequences. For while it’s critical not to fall into a marginal deficiency of key nutrients like zinc, manganese, and even calcium, there really is such a phenomenon as “too much of a good thing.”
Excessive Supplementation Risks:
Balanced Zinc & Copper Ratios
The intimate relationship between zinc and copper, for instance, is a biochemical “soft target” for nutritional toxicity if you take too much zinc – or even a reasonable dose of zinc not balanced by an equilibrating dose of copper. The two minerals are so similar in their atomic structure that they can actually compete with one another, not only for absorption, but also for utilization in the body’s biochemical pathways. When your intake of zinc is too high relative to your copper intake, the excess zinc actually interferes with the activity of enzymes, which depend on copper for their biological function, by stepping in to copper’s proper binding sites in the enzymes. A high intake of zinc, without a balancing increase in copper intake, can therefore lead to a secondary, functional copper deficiency by competing for absorption and interfering with its metabolism.
Boron and Vanadium
Boron appears to be an essential factor in preserving the health of the skeleton and joints, and has been linked to reduced risk of prostate cancer; silicon has been shown in animal studies, epidemiological studies, and preliminary clinical trials to build stronger bones, apparently through a cofactor role in collagen synthesis; and vanadium appears to have a key role in thyroid function, as well as having a “pharmacological” effect on glucose metabolism at extremely high doses.
Yet another example of “megadose mania,” for which the evidence is disturbing if not yet conclusive, is the probable neurological damage caused by excessive manganese supplementation. Yes, manganese is important – for bone health, and for the critical antioxidant enzyme mitochondrial superoxide dismutase. But that doesn’t mean that there’s no downside to the nutrient at excessive dosages. Along with animal showing that excessive manganese intake leads to neurological damage and the existence of neurological syndromes resembling Parkinson’s disease in workers in industries where inhaling manganese is common. That doesn’t mean you should avoid manganese supplementation – just that you should keep your intake similar to the dietary reference intake (DRI). The 5, 10, or even 15 milligrams found in so many supplements are putting your neurological health at risk.
Even calcium supplements can be taken too far. Current “official” recommendations suggest an intake of 1000 milligrams of calcium for younger adults, and 1200 milligrams for people over the age of 50. Some evidence suggests that a still higher intake (1300-1600 milligrams) of calcium is more effective for lowering fracture risk in the elderly. But these numbers are your total calcium need. The more calcium you get in your diet, the less you need from supplements. There is little evidence that ever-higher intake of calcium does your bones any additional good, and indeed taking too much calcium can inhibit the absorption and utilization of other important bone nutrients, such as zinc, phosphorus, and copper.
Now, that doesn’t mean you have to stop eating foods naturally rich in calcium, because such foods also tend to be balanced by their content of these other important nutrients. And the same goes for well-balanced supplements. But taking gram after gram of extra calcium from stand-alone pills, and then adding sugary fruit drinks and chocolate bars that have been “fortified” with unbalanced calcium to make them look like health foods.
Choosing the Right Forms:
The best form of calcium not derived from an animal source is calcium citrate-malate, a unique form of calcium not to be confused with simple calcium citrate, or with a simple admixture of calcium citrate and calcium malate. This unique form makes calcium citrate-malate six to nine times more easily dissolved in the stomach than plain calcium citrate. The result: calcium citrate-malate absorption is consistently found to be around 36 to 37% in capsules and tablets, and can be as high as 42% when dissolved in orange juice. And it has no antacid effect, so your absorption of other nutrients is unaffected.
Calcium citrate-malate is bulkier than calcium carbonate: at just 20% elemental calcium by weight, you need to take twice as much to get the same number of milligrams into the pill. It’s also more expensive than calcium carbonate, which is produced on a mass scale to make Tums® and other commercial antacids. But your body will be able to tell if you’re trying to skimp it.
The most common sources of magnesium – such as magnesium oxide, hydroxide/carbonate, and citrate – all have absorption in the 20-30% range. Surprisingly, even magnesium bisglycinate chelate, despite the hype, has been found to have similar bioavailability to magnesium oxide in all published human studies. By contrast, magnesium aspartate has a remarkable 41.7% bioavailability.
To get the most benefit from the research on this amazing mineral, you’ll want to take it in the form that is most effective and has minimal toxicity – because too much of this mineral can damage normal, healthy cells. Selenomethionine is one of the least toxic forms of selenium availale, and it is the main form found in most foods.
Other Essential Minerals
Governments only recognize a handful of minerals to be essential, and most supplements will include at least some amount of all of them in some form. But evidence has been accumulating for decades that there are other essential minerals as well. It was only recently that chromium was recognized by the Institute of Medicine to be necessary for your health. But the evidence is compelling that boron, silicon, and vanadium are as necessary to your health as the “official” essential minerals, such as calcium, magnesium, or zinc.
Make no mistake: your body needs these minerals! Their role in your health is literally indispensable. But you want them in appropriate doses, at appropriate ratios, reflecting the balance of nutrients in healthy diets, and within the range at which our bodies are built to use them.
Calcium citrate-malate absorption is consistently found to be around 36 to 37% in capsules and tablets, and can be as high as 42% when dissolved in orange juice. And it has no antacid effect, so absorption of other nutrients is unaffected. Clinical trials show that calcium citrate-malate gives better protection to the bones than other vegetarian calcium sources.
What’s Wrong with Calcium Carbonate?
For instance, calcium carbonate is dirt cheap, and at 40% calcium by weight, a company can claim a high amount of calcium in a small number of pills. But while that makes the label and the price tag look attractive, you won’t like what happens when you swallow the pill. First, calcium carbonate is very poorly absorbed: your body only takes up about 22 to 26% of the calcium in a calcium carbonate pill. And despite what you hear, calcium citrate is actually no better absorbed than calcium carbonate when taken with food. Second, calcium carbonate blocks the body’s absorption of many nutrients – including vitamin B12, folic acid, iron, and zinc – because it neutralizes the body’s stomach acid.
The most common sources of magnesium – such as magnesium oxide, hydroxide/carbonate, and citrate – all have absorption in the 20-30% range. Magnesium bisglycinate chelate has been found to have similar bioavailability to magnesium oxide in all published human studies. By contrast, magnesium aspartate has a remarkable 41.7% bioavailability.
A large-scale, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial evaluated Selenium’s effectiveness in preventing abnormal cell growth. The trial was able to document specific changes other than normal cell growth in the skin, lung, colon and prostate.
Boron, Silicon, Vanadium & Chromium
Boron appears to be an essential factor in preserving the health of the skeleton and joints, and has been linked to a reduced risk of prostate problems; silicon has been shown in animal studies, epidemiological studies, and preliminary clinical trials to build stronger bones, apparently through a cofactor role in collagen synthesis; and vanadium appears to have a key role in thyroid function, as well as having a “pharmacological” effect on glucose metabolism at extremely high doses. Chromium picolinate also supports healthy glucose metabolism and supports insulin activity.
Zinc and Copper
Both animal and human evidence suggests that, for optimal utilization of both zinc and copper, the balance between them should be about ten-to-one. Because most people’s diets are a little higher in zinc than they are in copper, it makes sense to actually be a little shy of this ratio. But instead, it’s common for supplements to include either too much zinc, or little or no copper, with the result that many – perhaps most – zinc supplements and multivitamin multivitamin and multimineral formulas contain potentially harmful zinc imbalances.
In a series of human studies, putting volunteers on a diet and supplement regimen in which the ratio between zinc and copper was 23.5-to-one (and sometimes lower) – common zinc-to-copper ratios, found in many multivitamins on health food store shelves – resulted in wide-ranging metabolic disturbances, including reduced levels of the copper-based antioxidants enzymes cytosolic superoxide dismutase and ceruloplasmin, increased total and LDL (“bad”) cholesterol, anemia, reductions in the body’s levels of enkephalins (natural pain-killing molecules), and cardiac dysfunction (including rhythm disturbances and even heart attacks!). At the extreme, out-of control zinc supplementation impairs immune function, despite the fact that an adequate intake of zinc is necessary for the immune system to perform its duties. And at extreme levels of intake, recent research suggests that too much zinc can even increase a man’s risk of prostate disorders.
Manganese and Excessive Supplementation Dangers
Manganese is important – for bone health, and for the critical antioxidant enzyme mitochondrial superoxide dismutase. But that doesn’t mean that there’s no downside to the nutrient at excessive dosages. Along with animal evidence showing that excessive manganese intake leads to neurological damage and the existence of neurological syndromes resembling Parkinson’s disease in workers in industries where inhaling manganese is common, the best evidence that manganese over supplementation really is an issue worthy of our concern is a study which compared the manganese intake from diet and supplements of people with Parkinson’s disease with those of people without the disease.
The study found that people with high dietary intake of manganese are about 70% more likely to fall prey to this neurological disorder – and that the risk was further increased among people who also consumed manganese-containing supplements, or who also had a very high intake of iron. That doesn’t mean you should avoid manganese supplementation – just that you should keep your intake similar to the dietary reference intake (DRI). The 5, 10, or even 15 milligrams found in so many supplements are putting your neurological health at risk.
Molybdenum: Essentials & Excesses
Molybdenum is an essential cofactor required for the function of 3 enzymes in humans including sulfite oxidase, xanthine oxidase, and aldehyde oxidase. These help metabolize sulfur-containing amino acids, purines, pyrimidines, and uric acid, among others. However, one study found that excessive molybdenum was associated with low testosterone levels in men, especially when zinc levels are low. This is a possible concern for infertility in men.
Many supplement companies pack their multiminerals with ineffective forms of key minerals because they are available at cut-rate prices, or because they are dense – meaning that you can cram a lot of the elemental mineral into a limited number of capsules. Their low cost make the price look right, and the high elemental yields make the pills look “high-potency” on the label – but if your body can’t use the minerals in the capsules, it doesn’t matter how much you cram into them.
AOR’s Ortho•Minerals was designed to be a balanced, effective mineral supplement, providing only the best forms and optimal ratios and doses of each ingredient. This formula reflects true orthomolecular medicine.
A scientific review: the role of chromium in insulin resistance. Diabetes Educ. 2004;Suppl:2-14.
Dawson-Hughes B, Dallal GE, Krall EA, Sadowski L, Sahyoun N, Tannenbaum S. A controlled trial of the effect of calcium supplementation on bone density in postmenopausal women. N Engl J Med. 1990 Sep 27; 323(13): 878-83.
Klevay LM. Lack of a recommended dietary allowance for copper may be hazardous to your health. J Am Coll Nutr. 1998 Aug; 17(4): 322-6.
Meeker JD, Rossano MG, Protas B, Padmanahban V, Diamond MP, Puscheck E, Daly D, Paneth N, Wirth JJ. Environmental exposure to metals and male reproductive hormones: circulating testosterone is inversely associated with blood molybdenum. Fertil Steril. 2010 Jan;93(1):130-40.
Nielsen FH. Ultratrace elements in nutrition: current knowledge and speculation. J Trace Elem Exp Med. 1998;11(2-3):251-74.
Racette BA, Aschner M, Guilarte TR, Dydak U, Criswell SR, Zheng W. Pathophysiology of manganese-associated neurotoxicity. Neurotoxicology. 2012 Aug;33(4):881-6.
Reid ME, Duffield-Lillico AJ, Slate E, Natarajan N, Turnbull B, Jacobs E, Combs GF Jr, Alberts DS, Clark LC, Marshall JR. The nutritional prevention of cancer: 400 mcg per day selenium treatment. Nutr Cancer. 2008;60(2):155-63.
Sandstead HH. Requirements and toxicity of essential trace elements, illustrated by zinc and copper. Am J Clin Nutr. 1995 Mar; 61(3 Suppl): 621S-624S.
Turnlund JR, Keyes WR, Peiffer GL, Chiang G. Molybdenum absorption, excretion, and retention studied with stable isotopes in young men during depletion and repletion. Am J Clin Nutr. 1995 May;61(5):1102-9.
Ultratrace elements in nutrition: current knowledge and speculation.
J Trace Elem Exp Med. 1998; 11(2-3): 251-74.
The term ultratrace element has been defined as an element with an established, estimated, or suspected requirement generally indicated by mg/day for humans. Between 1970 and 1984, it was suggested that 11 elements should be added to the list of ultratrace elements that included chromium, molybdenum, and selenium; these elements were arsenic, boron, bromine, cadmium, fluorine, lead, lithium, nickel, silicon, tin, and vanadium. Since 1984, it has been suggested that three more elements, aluminum, germanium, and rubidium, should be added to the list, and circumstantial evidence has continued to accumulate which indicates that several of the ultratrace elements in addition to iodine and selenium, particularly arsenic, boron, chromium, nickel, silicon, and vanadium, are more important in nutrition than currently acknowledged. This evidence includes findings from human studies suggesting that boron has an essential function or beneficial effect in calcium metabolism, brain function, energy metabolism, and perhaps immune processes; and that chromium has an essential function in potentiating insulin action in the metabolism of glucose and lipids, and/or a beneficial effect on diabetes resulting from inadequate synthesis of insulin or insulin resistance. The major shortcoming that has prevented the unequivocal acceptance of the nutritional importance of any of the ultratrace elements suggested as being essential since 1970 and chromium is that a specific biochemical function has not been identified for any of these elements. The current status of the evidence suggesting essentiality, the possible biological function, and speculated dietary need for each of the 15 elements without an identified biochemical function is reviewed.
Lack of a recommended dietary allowance for copper may be hazardous to your health.
J Am Coll Nutr. 1998 Aug; 17(4): 322-6.
The 10th edition of Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA) did not include an RDA for copper; rather a safe and adequate daily intake was suggested. Criteria, history and uses of RDAs were summarized along with data on dietary intakes, balance and depletion experiments, low (fats and oils, skim milk and yogurt) and high (legumes, mushrooms, nuts and seeds) copper foods and hazards of zinc supplements. Bone disease and cardiovascular disease from diets-low in copper have been studied in animals for decades. Men and women fed diets close to 1 mg of copper per day, amounts quite frequent in the US, responded similarly to deficient animals with reversible, potentially harmful changes in blood pressure control, cholesterol and glucose metabolism, and electrocardiograms. Women supplemented with trace elements including copper experienced beneficial effects on bone density. These data exceed similar data on magnesium, selenium and zinc and are sufficient for establishing an RDA. Ischemic heart disease and osteoporosis are likely consequences of diets low in copper. Numerous anatomical, chemical and physiological similarities between animals deficient in copper and people with ischemic heart disease have been noticed. Association between osteoporosis and low copper status deserves further inquiry. Augmenting low copper diets with high copper foods may be beneficial. Committees that establish RDAs should return to the traditions of the first nine editions and make recommendations that promote health and nutritional welfare, meet functional needs, prevent disease and promote public welfare.
Requirements and toxicity of essential trace elements, illustrated by zinc and copper.
Am J Clin Nutr. 1995 Mar; 61(3 Suppl): 621S-624S.
Early signs of toxicity of essential trace elements are important. Some trace elements are available over-the-counter (OTC) and/or are present at industrial waste sites. Physicochemically similar trace elements compete for ligands, impairing functions, which is exemplified by the zinc-copper antagonism described long ago by Van Campen, Hill and Matrone, and Klevay. Intestinal absorption of copper is inhibited by zinc. Thus risk of copper deficiency is increased when the molar ratio of zinc to copper (Zn:Cu) is high. As shown by experiments, copper deficiency can occur in humans. Manifestations include decreased erythrocyte copper-zinc superoxide dismutase, increased low-density-lipoprotein cholesterol, decreased high-density-lipoprotein cholesterol, decreased glucose clearance, decreased methionine and leucine enkephalins, and abnormal cardiac function. Calculation of a preliminary reference dose for OTC zinc that assumed high bioavailability and uncertain copper intakes established 9 mg as a safe amount for 60-kg adults.
A controlled trial of the effect of calcium supplementation on bone density in postmenopausal women.
N Engl J Med. 1990 Sep 27; 323(13): 878-83.
Dawson-Hughes B, Dallal GE, Krall EA, Sadowski L, Sahyoun N, Tannenbaum S.
Background. The effectiveness of calcium in retarding bone loss in older postmenopausal women is unclear. Earlier work suggested that the women who were most likely to benefit from calcium supplementation were those with low calcium intakes.
Methods. We undertook a double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized trial to determine the effect of calcium on bone loss from the spine, femoral neck, and radius in 301 healthy postmenopausal women, half of whom had a calcium intake lower than 400 mg per day and half an intake of 400 to 650 mg per day. The women received placebo or either calcium carbonate or calcium citrate malate (500 mg of calcium per day) for two years.
Results. In women who had undergone menopause five or fewer years earlier, bone loss from the spine was rapid and was not affected by supplementation with calcium. Among the women who had been postmenopausal for six years or more and who were given placebo, bone loss was less rapid in the group with the higher dietary calcium intake. In those with the lower calcium intake, calcium citrate malate prevented bone loss during the two years of the study; its effect was significantly different from that of placebo (P less than 0.05) at the femoral neck (mean change in bone density [ /- SE], 0.87 /- 1.01 percent vs. -2.11 /- 0.93 percent), radius (1.05 /- 0.75 percent vs. -2.33 /- 0.72 percent), and spine (-0.38 /- 0.82 percent vs. -2.85 /- 0.77 percent). Calcium carbonate maintained bone density at the femoral neck (mean change in bone density, 0.08 /- 0.98 percent) and radius (0.24 /- 0.70 percent) but not the spine (-2.54 /- 0.85 percent). Among the women who had been postmenopausal for six years or more and who had the higher calcium intake, those in all three treatment groups maintained bone density at the hip and radius and lost bone from the spine.
Conclusions. Healthy older postmenopausal women with a daily calcium intake of less than 400 mg can significantly reduce bone loss by increasing their calcium intake to 800 mg per day. At the dose we tested, supplementation with calcium citrate malate was more effective than supplementation with calcium carbonate.