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People-friendly Copper

Copper is a “nutrient” essential to good health

Did you know that copper is present in the human body? Copper is obtained from a variety of foods we eat, and plays important roles in maintaining good health.

Did you know that “copper is an important nutrient?”

Minerals and Copper  “Minerals and copper” essential to good health

About 80 to 100 mg of copper are present in our body. Copper is an “essential trace element” and plays crucial roles such as producing blood cells, maintaining healthy bones and blood vessels, and helping enhance brain function. About 2 mg of copper are required by the body per day, which can be naturally supplemented through a well-balanced diet. Foods that are rich in copper include oyster, liver (20-30 mg/kg), grains, and legumes. Nuts are also good sources of copper.

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Food with nutrient function claims  Copper specified as a nutrient of “food with nutrient function claims”

In March 2004, copper was specified as one of nutrients whose functions can be labeled with the “food with nutrient function claims (FNFC)” by the Ministry of Health, Labour and Welfare. FNFC refers to foods used to supplement nutrients needed daily, when it is difficult to take them due to aging or changes in lifestyle. As nutrients essential for human vital activities, 5 minerals including copper and 12 vitamins are specified.

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Addition to powdered milk  Addition of “copper to powdered milk” for a baby’s growth

A fast-growing baby needs copper. Copper is present at a rate of two to three more times in the body of a newborn than in an adult. During the first month after childbirth, 100 mL breastmilk contains about 45 μg of copper. For this reason, copper is added to powdered milk. 320 μg of copper are added to every 100 g of powdered milk. The standard 14% baby formula prepared with powdered milk contains 45 μg of copper per 100 mL (An example cited from a major powdered milk manufacturer). Even a paltry amount of copper contributes greatly to the healthy growth of a baby.

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