Foods that are a natural source of lithium

Written by gemma argent
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  • Introduction

    Foods that are a natural source of lithium

    Lithium is a mineral salt discovered in the 1800s and is primarily used to alter the moods of people who suffer from psychiatric disorders. While available as a prescription medicine, lithium can also be found in many foods.

    Lithium is a type of mineral salt (Image by, courtesy of Lenore Edman)

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    A significant natural source of lithium is contained in all sorts of dairy products such as milk and cheese. Since lithium is a salt, it is absorbed by dairy cattle from their food and water and released into the milk.

    Dairy is a good source of lithium (Image by, courtesy of Monica Arellano-Ongpin)

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    Drinking water contains traces of lithium as a natural mineral, but mineral water from springs can contain even higher amounts of lithium. The location and source of the spring will determine the concentration of lithium.

    Water contains lithium (Image by, courtesy of Nicholas)

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    Another good food source for lithium is in herbs. Adding herbs to food for flavour is an excellent way to get lithium while seasoning food. Some herbs like chamomile can be used in tea.

    Lithium is in herbs (Image by, courtesy of Thomas Kriese)

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    The vegetables that are highest in lithium content are the nightshade vegetables--potatoes, peppers and tomatoes. Any vegetables, however, contain lithium to some degree because they take up the lithium from the soil.

    Vegetables are a lithium food source (Image by, courtesy of

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    Eating foods made of grain will contribute to the daily load of lithium. All plants absorb lithium along with nutrients, although researchers do not believe lithium is a nutrient for the plants.

    All types of grain are rich in lithium. (Image by, courtesy of Alex)

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