Copper Health Topic
Copper is involved in the absorption, storage and metabolism of iron.2 Copper supplementation may be beneficial for individuals with anemia because this mineral works together with iron to form hemoglobin.6
Low copper levels may affect collagen formation and thus tissue health and healing.4 There are patented copper-containing materials for treating wounds, burns and other skin conditions.5
Dietary Sources of Copper:
Shellfish, whole grains, beans, nuts, potatoes, organ meats, dark leafy greens, dried fruits , cocoa, black pepper, and yeast.
Learn More About Copper
Copper is an essential nutrient that plays a role in the production of hemoglobin (the main iron component of red blood cells), myelin (the substance that surrounds nerve fibers), collagen (a key component of bones and connective tissue), and melanin (a dark pigment that colors the hair and skin). Copper also works with vitamin C to help make a component of connective tissue known as elastin. Copper can act as both an antioxidant and a pro-oxidant. Copper supplementation may be beneficial for individuals with anemia because this mineral works together with iron to form hemoglobin. Animal studies suggest that oral copper supplements reduce the development and progression of arthritis. People with major burns tend to lose copper more rapidly than other mineral. Copper levels may be low in the inflamed tissue of those with inflammatory bowel disease, particularly Crohn's disease. In one clinical study found that dietary zinc and copper intakes are associated with reduced risk of lung cancer.
Copper is involved in the formation of red blood cells, the absorption and utilization of iron, the metabolism of cholesterol and glucose, and the synthesis and release of life-sustaining proteins and enzymes. Copper stimulates the immune system to fight infections, to repair injured tissues, and to promote healing. Copper also helps to neutralize "free-radicals", which can cause severe damage to cells. Copper is essential for the normal growth and development of human fetuses, infants, and children. Copper availability in the body is hindered by an excess of iron and zinc. Conditions linked to copper deficiency include osteoporosis, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, cardiovascular disease, colon cancer, and chronic conditions involving bone, connective tissue, heart, and blood vessels. The major target organs for copper deficiency are the blood and hematopoietic system, the cardiovascular system, connective tissue and bone, the nervous system, and the immune system.
Chromium and copper: these two elements are the most important nutrients next to calcium and magnesium for their anti-inflammatory properties. It is an important catalyst in the formation of the oxygen-carrying molecule hemoglobin. Copper is transferred by albumin across the gut wall and carried to the liver where it is formed into ceruloplasmin, a copper transport protein. Sufficient ceruloplasmin levels affect a decrease in the absorption of copper to minimize copper toxicity. Copper is an essential component of several physiologically important enzymes. Due to the synergism of copper and aluminum, a higher intake or absorption of aluminum will result in greater copper retention and lowered sulfur level. Copper is a necessary component to support angiogenesis (formation of new blood vessels in tumors), so to a certain extent, lowering copper reduces the risk to develop tumors.
The reduced red blood cell function and shortened red cell life span found with copper deficiency can influence energy levels and cause weakness and labored respiration from decreased oxygen delivery. Low copper levels may also affect collagen formation and thus tissue health and healing. Reduced thyroid function; cardiovascular disease; increased cholesterol, uric acid and blood pressure; impaired glucose tolerance; skeletal defects related to bone demineralization; and poor nerve conductivity (including irregular heart rhythms) can all result from copper depletion.
The invention provides a method for treating and healing sores, cold sores, cutaneous openings, ulcerations, lesions, abrasions, burns and skin conditions comprising applying to a body surface exhibiting the same, a material incorporating water-insoluble copper compounds which release cu.sup.+ ions, cu.sup.++ ions or combinations thereof upon contact with a fluid to effect the treatment and healing thereof.
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