Molybdenum is an essential trace mineral. Deficiency of molybdenum is rare, but may occur in certain parts of the world. Current marketing of molybdenum products for the treatment of medical conditions is not founded on any meaningful scientific evidence.
Molybdenum is found in a variety of foods, including dark green leafy vegetables, legumes, and whole grains. Mineral water or “hard” tap water may also supply significant amounts of molybdenum.
Deficiency of molybdenum is believed to be rare. Although accurate “recommended daily intake” levels for molybdenum have not been determined, less precise “safe and adequate intake” levels have been set in the U.S. as follows:
- Birth to 3 years of age: 15 to 50 micrograms (mcg)
- 4 to 6 years of age: 30 to 75 mcg
- 7 to 10 years of age: 50 to 150 mcg
- 11 or older: 75 to 250 mcg
There are no known uses of molybdenum that would suggest doses other than the “safe and adequate” levels noted in the previous section.
Molybdenum is marketed both as a tablet and as a liquid supplement containing the mineral in dissolved form. Despite widespread claims, there is no evidence that one form of molybdenum is absorbed to a markedly superior extent than any other.
Websites that advocate molybdenum products make numerous health claims that lack scientific foundation. Some of these unsupported claims include the following:
- Regulates the body’s pH
- Enhances the body’s ability to burn fat
- Eliminates toxins
- Promotes general well-being
- Prevents tooth decay
- Aids sleep
- Reduces allergic reaction to chemicals such as MSG or sulfites
- Increases male and female libido
None of these claims have any scientific support, and some (such as “regulating the body’s pH) make no sense from a scientific point of view.
Additionally, it is often stated by some manufacturers of molybdenum products that a variety of disease are commonly caused or worsened by molybdenum deficiency. These include acne , allergies , asthma , athlete's foot , Bell's palsy , bladder infection , candidiasis , canker sores , depression , diabetes , eczema , gulf war syndrome, viral hepatitis , herpes simplex , liver cirrhosis , lupus , Lyme disease, multiple sclerosis , and prostatitis . However, again all of these claims lack even the bare minimum of foundation.
- Reviewer: EBSCO CAM Review Board
- Review Date: 07/2012 -
- Update Date: 07/25/2012 -