Phosphorus is the second most abundant mineral in the body next to calcium. It is the primary ion in extra and intracellular fluid and plays a major role in the production of energy alongside B vitamins and enzymes.
Phosphorus binds with calcium and becomes a major component of the structural part of our bones and teeth. It is also in virtually every metabolic reaction that occurs within the body. It is necessary for the conversion of carbohydrates, fat and protein into energy. Phosphorus is also a component of ATP which is the reservoir of energy in cells. Lastly phosphorus is a part of DNA and RNA make up, binding with amino acids to form a chain.
The Institute of Medicine recommends the following:
- Up to 6 months: 100 milligrams per day (mg/day)
- 7 to 12 months: 275 mg/day
- 1 to 3 years old: 460 mg/day
- 4 to 8 years old: 500 mg/day
- 9 to 17 years old: 1,250 mg/day
- 18 years old: 1,250 mg/day
- 19 years old and older: 700 mg/day
- Pregnant or lactating:
- Younger than 18 years old: 1,250 mg/day
- Older than 18 years old: 700 mg/day
Phosphorus deficiencies are unlikely to occur in healthy adults because virtually every food has phosphorus in it. However, some medical conditions or disorders like kidney or liver disorders, or alcoholism could lead to low blood phosphate levels.
Sources in the Diet
Phosphorus is found in virtually every food, but some good sources of this mineral are bran cereal, salmon, mackerel, oats, sunflower seas, calms, buckwheat, tuna, goat cheese and peanuts.
Recent Studies and Articles
Bone health and phosphorus
Health benefits of phosphorus
-  – http://djarn.edublogs.org/files/2011/01/periodic-table-2jh1745.gif
-  – Reavley N. The New Encyclopedia of Vitamins, Minerals, Supplements and Herbs. New York, NY: M. Evans and Company, Inc.; 1998.
-  – Nelms, M. Sucher, K. Lacey, K. Roth, S. Nutrition Therapy & Pathophysiology. 2 ed. New York, NY: Cengage Learning; 2011.
-  – Boyle, Marie A. and Anderson Sara L. Personal Nutrition. 7th ed. Belmont, CA: Wadsworth/Thomson Learning; 2007.
-  – http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/002424.htm