Manganese information, FAQ and product listing page. This page contains information and frequently asked questions about manganese as well as a complete list of products containing manganese.

What is manganese and what does it do?

The mineral element known as manganese (mn) is an essential nutrient for the human body. The root of the word comes for the Greek word for magic. The word is appropriate because of many of its still uknown attributes and characteristics – scientists are still trying to understand the variety of effects that manganese has on living organisms.

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What are the benefits of taking manganese?

Manganese plays a crucial role in many of the physiologic processes that our bodies go through. It acts as an activator and constituent of many enzymes.

Antioxidant Properties

MnSOD, or manganese superoxide dismutase is one of the primary antioxidant enzymes inside of mitochondria. Due to the fact that mitochondria consume over 90% of the oxygen that our cells produce, they are particularly vulnerable to oxidative stress. During the ATP synthesis, a reactive oxygen species known as superoxide radical is produced in mitochondria. MnSOD converts these superoxide radicals to hydrone peroxide, which is then in turn reduced further to water by other antioxidant enzymes present in our bodies.


Enzymes that require to be activated by manganese play a necessary role in the metabolism of several substances, including cholesterol, amino acids, and carbohydrates. An enzyme that contains manganese called pyruvate carboxylase, as well as a manganese activated enzyme called PEPCK are required in the process of gluconeogenesis. This is the process in which glucose is produced by non-carbohydrate precursors.

Another enzyme that contains manganese known as arginase is used by liver during the urea cycle, a process in which the liver detoxifies ammonia generated during the metabolism of amino acids.

Development of Bones

If our bodies do not receive enough manganese and become deficient, it may result in abnormal skeletal development. Glycosyltransferases is a group of enzymes that requires manganese to act as a preferred cofactor – these enzymes are needed for the synthesizing of proteogylcans, which are beneficial to the formation and creation of healthy bone and cartilage.

Healing Wounds

Collagen is part of the complicated process that healing a wound involves. Manganese comes into play as it is necessary for the activation of an enzyme called prolidase, which primary responsibility is to provide the amino acid proline. Collegen relies on this to create skin cells.

Unfortunately, a genetic disorder exists referred to as prolidase deficiency which results in irregular and abnormal healing of wounds (in addition to other problems). This is labeled as an abnormal manganese metabolism.

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Who can benefit from taking manganese?

Every healthy adult can benefit from supplementing with manganese. In particular, athletes, and especially those athletes on high protein diets can benefit from taking manganese. Athletes may desire to supplement with manganese because of their proneness to muscular strains and sprains, as well as the possibility of certain inflammatory conditions.

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How much manganese should I take?

As always, you should strictly adhere to the dosage instructions found on the label. With that being said, adequate intake levels of manganese are 2.3 milligrams a day for adult men and 1.8 milligrams a day for adult women. This is the level to prevent deficiency, not optimal health.

For those over the age of 65, you may be more susceptible to manganese toxicity as liver disease is much more common in older adults. Liver disease decreases the amount of manganese in your body and such, manganese that is ingested lingers longer.

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Does manganese have any side effects?

No side effects have been reported as of the time of this writing. While toxicity is rare, it has been reported in areas where high quantities of manganese dust exist in the environment. Miners who work in areas with manganese dust for an extended period of time have displayed symptoms of brain disease, as well as nervous system disorders.

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