Molybdenum is found in unfiltered water, cheese, grains, leafy greens, nuts and liver, and this trace element is crucial to nearly every life form on earth. As an essential catalyst for enzymes to help metabolize fats and carbohydrates and facilitate the breakdown of certain amino acids in your body, it’s crucial to your health. The deficiency of molybdenum is usually exclusive to those who have to be fed intravenously. In humans, it can be the source of such issues as a headache, rapid heartbeat, mental health problems and even coma.
The enamel of your teeth contains high amounts of molybdenum, and the mineral might even help to decrease tooth decay. The amount that is found in plant-based foods is in direct relation to how much is found in the soil where they grow. Molybdenum is available in both liquid and capsule form as a supplement. A form of molybdenum is tetrathiomolybdate, which lowers copper levels in the body, so it’s effective in treating fibrotic, inflammatory and autoimmune diseases.
Livestrong reported that molybdenum is a necessary element in soil to prevent the production of cancer-causing agents as nitrosamines in plant foods. It has been shown in animal studies that it inhibits pulmonary and liver fibrosis, helps prevent liver damage and reduces heart damage.
Molybdenum also shows a partially protective effect against diabetes. It is known to function as a cofactor for:
- Sulfite oxidase, which is crucial for human health
- Xanthine oxidase that catalyzes the breakdown of nucleotides, precursors to DNA and RNA, that then forms uric acid, helping to retain closing factors in plasma and resist reactive oxygen species for antioxidant capacity of the blood.
- Aldehyde oxidase and xanthine oxidase that involve a number of molecules with similar chemical structures and help metabolize drugs and toxins
- Mitochondrial amidoxime reducing component that accelerates the removal of certain toxic substances.
Molybdenum helps you stay healthy by breaking down what you eat, including proteins. The National Institute of Medicine has recommended daily allowances of molybdenum per day such as:
- Adults – 45 micrograms
- Age 14 to 18 – 43 micrograms
- Age 9 to13 – 34 micrograms
- Age 4 to 8 – 22 micrograms
- Under age 4 – 17 micrograms
- Pregnant or lactating women – 50 micrograms
Soil that is lacking molybdenum is linked to cancer of the esophagus. In a small region of Northern China, cancer of the esophagus and stomach is 10X higher than China’s national average and 100X higher than the average in the U.S., according to a study.
It is believed by scientists that incidences of certain cancers are linked to dietary or environmental factors, including increased intake of nitrosamines, which are carcinogens found more often in plant foods grown in molybdenum-deficient soils. The enzyme can’t perform properly without its molybdenum cofactor. The molybdenum’s antioxidant properties may help to break down toxins in your body, including cancer-causing nitrosamines from foods and other sources.
-Dr Fredda Branyon