The mineral sulfur is needed for the manufacture of many proteins, including those forming hair, muscles, and skin. Sulfur contributes to fat digestion and absorption, because it is needed to make bile acids. Sulfur is also a constituent of bones, teeth, and collagen (the protein in connective tissue). As a component of insulin, sulfur is needed to regulate blood sugar.
Actual deficiencies of sulfur have not been documented, although a protein-deficient diet could theoretically lead to a deficiency of sulfur.
Most dietary sulfur is consumed as part of certain amino acids in protein-rich foods. Meat and poultry, organ meats, fish, eggs, beans, and dairy products are all good sources of sulfur-containing amino acids.
Sulfur occurs naturally in garlic and onions and may be partially responsible for the health benefits associated with these foods. [Augusti KT. Therapeutic values of onion (Allium cepa L.) and garlic (Allium sativum L.). Indian J Exp Biol 1996;34: pp.634-40]
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