Copper Gluconate Background and Benefits
Copper gluconate is a chemical compound with the formula C12H22CuO14. It is a blue-green crystal at room temperature and is highly soluble in water. The primary use of copper gluconate in health supplements is to provide a bioavailable form of copper, which is an essential nutrient for all plants and animals.
Copper is a chemical element with the atomic number 29. The minimum daily requirement for copper is up to 3 milligrams (mg) per day. The human body typically contains 1.4 mg to 2.1 mg of copper per kilogram (kg) of body weight, primarily in the bones and muscles. Copper is a relatively abundant metal on Earth that exists in pure form as well as many minerals.
Animal protein, especially organ meats, is one of the most significant dietary sources of copper. It is also found in many other foods such as nuts, seeds and cereal grains. Dietary copper is absorbed by the intestines and bound to albumin. It is then transported to the liver, which regulates the concentration of copper in the bloodstream. The liver eliminates excess copper from the body in the form of bile.
Copper is a component of many proteins in the body, typically metalloenzymes. It is essential for a large number of specific metabolic functions, especially the growth and repair of various tissues.
Uses of Copper Gluconate
The most common uses for copper gluconate as a health supplement include support of healthy levels of testosterone and red blood cells. It is also used to support bone growth and the immune system.
Red blood cell support
Copper is essential for efficiently extracting iron from dietary sources. This effect may allow copper gluconate to support a healthy concentration of red blood cells.
Copper is an essential component of bone, so copper gluconate may help to support healthy bone density.
Immune system support
Copper gluconate may help to support the immune system since copper is essential for the production of white blood cells.
Copper gluconate may help to maintain healthy testosterone levels. The mechanism for this effect is the inhibition of the conversion of testosterone to estrogen.
Signs You May Need Copper Gluconate
The relative abundance of copper and its low nutritional requirement mean that a deficiency of copper doesn’t occur under normal circumstances. The conditions most likely to cause a copper deficiency include major gastrointestinal surgery, which can prevent copper from being absorbed by the intestines. A rare genetic disorder called Menkes disease can also prevent the metabolism of copper. The earliest signs of a copper deficiency usually affect the blood, including various forms of anemia.