Although phosphorus is enough in food its deficiency is mainly due to certain diseases such as diabetes, starvation, and alcoholism. In addition, some diseases can reduce the digestibility of phosphorus (Crohn's disease, celiac disease). Also the lack of phosphorus can be affected by certain drugs (eg, diuretics).
Symptoms of phosphorus deficiency are:
- loss of appetite,
- anxiety, mental confusion,
- bone pain,
- brittle bones,
- stiff joints,
- irregular breathing,
- general body weakness,
- changes in body weight,
- fatigue, exhaustion,
- problems with speech,
- susceptibility to infections,
In children, occurring more:
- slow growth,
- poor development of the bone,
- weak growth and tooth decay.
Excess phosphorus in the body occurs frequently and may be more concerned than the lack of it. The excess is most commonly caused by kidney disorders, consuming excessive amounts of phosphorus in food and soft drinks, and if the diet does not have enough calcium. Larger amounts of phosphorus in the body and cause a greater need for calcium.
A high intake of phosphorus leads to:
- cardiovascular disease,
- nonskeletal calcification of tissues (especially the kidneys, where it creates a kidney stone),
- poor digestibility of iron, calcium, magnesium and zinc.