Oligo-elements: natural supplementation for functional balance

We all know “elements” (also known as “minerals”) and their importance for the normal functioning of our bodily mechanisms. Many people take these in the form of nutritional supplements so as to treat or prevent element deficiency. Magnesium, Iron, Potassium are the most popular. When there is a certain or suspected lack of an element in our bodies, it is important to supplement with a high dosage of it.
However, when I speak of “oligoelements” or “trace elements” or “oligotherapy”, I refer to a specific approach in which mineral elements are taken in a very tiny quantity. However small, this quantity is enough to carry out two very important functions.

oligoelements naturopathy

Firstly, trace elements are catalysers of enzymatic reactions, that is by binding to enzymes, they accelerate metabolic and cell regulation reactions. They are thus effective when a person is suffering from an alteration of a function, rather than from a lesion or damage. For example, a person who cannot sleep because high levels of chronic stress have altered his/her sleep pattern will most likely benefit from a trace element intake.

Secondly, oligo-elements have a de-chelating function. In many cases, the deficiency of a given element is caused by the fact that the element is not bio-available in the body, that is, it is present but it is not accessible and cannot be utilized. Trace elements are able to free these chelated minerals that are there in the body and that have been introduced through a healthy diet or nutritional supplementation.

Although trace elements are generally quite safe to use, it is always recommended to seek the advice of a professional before taking them. Here are some notes on the most useful oligoelements in times of pandemic.

Copper-Gold-Silver is traditionally associated with lack of energy, depression, physical and psychological burn-out. It is the remedy of choice for old age and for chronic disease, but it is in young adults that its “lift me up” action can be felt more intensely and more rapidly.

Manganese-Copper is recommended to those people who tend to be weak and tired most of the day, starting from the morning, and who tend to get sick frequently and have relapses and long recovery time. Being their “ground remedy”, it can make them stronger and better able to face the current emergency.

Zinc helps keep the immune system strong and it is often used when there is a disfunction, weakness or higher risk. It also helps stabilize membranes and for this reason it can be useful in case of food intolerance, leaky gut and other inflammatory bowel diseases. As a big percentage of immune cells are in the bowel, it is a good idea to take it now, to help keep our bowel well and healthy during these days.

Selenium is “the” antioxidant of trace elements. By counteracting oxidation, it slows down the aging process and contributes to keep our immune system younger and responsive.


This article is written by Elisabetta Torricelli, naturopath and owner of the herbal medicine “L’Antologia” in via Molino delle Armi 3 in Milan: https://www.facebook.com/erboristerialantologia/

Elisabetta offers naturopathy consultancy, and sends herbal products by courier to Milan and on request to other areas of Italy.

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