The mineral is a constituent of all animal and plant cells. About 90 percent of phosphorus is found in the bones and teeth as calcium phosphate (hydroxy-apatite), and the rest in the muscles and nerves. The mineral is a cofactor in many enzymes, a component of nucleic acids, activator for the vitamin B complex, useful in the absorption of dietary constituents, the production of energy, and the maintenance of blood alkalinity. Phosphorus is widely available in foods, such as yeast extract, dried brewer's yeast, dried skimmed milk, soya, hard cheese, canned fish, nuts, cereals, meat, fish, etc, and is usually found in excess in the average diet.


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Dependent on vitamin D for absorption from food and for transmission from blood into bone. Excess phosphorus can hinder the absorption of calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese and zinc. A calcium/phosphorus balance may play an important role in bone health and oseoporosis. A deficiency of phosphorus can shorten red blood cell life and cause anemia, while subnormal white cells can weaken the immune system and reduce resistance to disease; but a deficiency is unlikely under normal circumstances.

In the unlikely event that phosphorus supplements are required, they should not be used with high blood potassium or Addison's disease.