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From: (Steven B. Harris )
Subject: Re: Molybdenum Chelate
Date: 26 Aug 1995

In <41kjd9$> "James C. Fleet, Ph.D."
<> writes:
> (Bill Hay) wrote:
>> G. K. Khalsa ( wrote:
>> : My wife has been asked to take Molybdenum Chelate to increase
>> : her iron absorption.  I can't find any info on this
>> : supplement.  Can anyone provide more info?
>> It's fairly inexpensive. I take a couple of tablets a day, providing
>> 150 mcg of molybdenum in each. I think the brand is Solgar, and I've
>> seen it in two health food stores. Probably there are other brands,
>> too.
>> I use it because it helps detox formaldehyde, and I'm chemically
>> sensitive.
>> --
>> Bill Hay, Norfolk VA (
>I think that Steven Harris already said this but it's worth repeating.
>There is no evidence that Molybdenum is needed to increase iron
>Iron is quite well absorbed from meat.  If your wife is a vegetarian
>the efficiency of iron absorption from plants can be improved by
>having a glass of OJ with meals or with iron supplements.
>Regardless, because iron is very well retained by the body (only
>bleeding results in substantial loss of body iron), it your wife
>has "iron-poor blood", she needs to eat more iron rich foods.  This
>will improve her iron status and help her problem directly.
>Also, I don't think there's anything to support the notion that
>we eat molybdenum poor diets.  I question the need for a molybdenum
>supplement for any nutritional purpose.
>J.C. Fleet, Ph.D.
>Tufts University
>School of Nutrition

Nobody ever saw molybdenum deficiencies in humans until they started
being able to put people on total parenteral (IV) nutrition for long
periods of time, and left out some trace minerals.  Apparently just
about any kind of oral diet supplies enough for deficiencies not to
show.  Perhaps people taking a lot of copper as a supplement (for some
weird reason) would have a problem, but that's on a theoretical basis,
based on work with animals (livestock work with sheep coat color, etc).
I'm with you-- molybdenum in iron supplements sounds like snakeoil.

                                         Steve Harris, M.D.

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