What is cooper?

Cooper is a mineral that is present in the body in small amounts. It is ranked third in importance after iron and aluminum. In an adult, about 100 mg is found mainly concentrated in areas such as the liver, bones and muscles, brain, kidneys, and heart. Cooper is involved in an individual’s everyday life, as it is an essential nutrient to the daily diet and helps keep nerve cells as well as the immune system healthy.



What is the function of cooper?

Copper is important for the function of many enzymes . Among its many activities, it is also included in regulating metabolism, helping the body make energy by combining with iron and producing red blood cells, bones and connective tissues. Cooper is also involved in the pigmentation of the skin and hair, influences the function of the heart as well as acts as an antioxidant, reducing free radicals that can damage cells and DNA.



Which foods are rich in cooper?

A variety of meats, mostly liver and kidney, are the richest sources of cooper. Other good sources include shellfish , oysters, fruit dry , seeds, wheat bran, whole grains, green leafy vegetables, chocolate and legumes .



What is the recommended daily requirement of cooper?

The estimated daily requirement of cooper for an adult is between 1.5 and 3 mg . At any age, this amount is usually sufficient to satisfy a healthy, well balanced diet.



What are the consequences of cooper deficiency?

An unbalanced diet, malabsorption or an excessive intake of zinc can all lead to copper deficiency.Although rare, this can have serious health consequences, such as demineralization of the bones,fragility of the walls of the arteries , anemia , connective tissue problems, nerve disorders , impaired immune function and increased risk of cardiovascular diseases and neurodegenerative diseases.In any case, taking cooper supplements can help individuals with anemia, however,  any intake should be done only under the supervision of a knowledgeable health care provider.



What are the consequences of excessive cooper intake?

Excessive intake of copper due to large consumption of food is rare. Common symptoms can include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and fever. In more severe cases, too much cooper can lead to hemolytic anemia, which can be fatal. Only in rare cases, typically in children, may an individual  experience liver damage or cirrhosis . Other times, excessive cooper intake due to the liver’s inability to eliminate can lead to a condition called Wilson’s disease. Wilson’s disease is a rare genetic disorder that leads to an accumulation of cooper in the liver, brain, eyes and other organs, causing tremors, difficulty speaking and swallowing, coordination problems, personality changes and hepatitis.



What is ceruloplasmia?

Ceruloplasmin is a cooper-containing  protein  in the blood . Low levels of ceruloplasmin may indicate the presence of diseases such as Wilson's disease, Menkes syndrome, aceruloplasminemia or liver disease in advanced stages, as well as malnutrition conditions.  High levels of
ceruloplasmin may be present in the case of cooper poisoning, during pregnancy, while combining oral contraceptives or estrogen, as well as diseases such as leukemia, Hodgkin's disease, systemic lupus erythematosus, rheumatoid arthritis, Alzheimer's disease, primary biliary cirrhosis, cholestasis and inflammation.