A mineral is a naturally occurring substance that is solid and inorganic representable by a chemical formula, usually abiogenic, and has an ordered atomic structure. It is different from a rock, which can be an aggregate of minerals or non-minerals and does not have a specific chemical composition. The exact definition of a mineral is under debate, especially with respect to the requirement a valid species be abiogenic, and to a lesser extent with regard to it having an ordered atomic structure. The study of minerals is called mineralogy.
Over twenty dietary elements are necessary for mammals, and several more for various other types of life. The total number of chemical elements that are absolutely needed is not known for any organism. Ultratrace amounts of some elements are known to clearly have a role but the exact biochemical nature is unknown, and others are suspected to have a role in health, but without proof.
Each Union Member has its own mineral and dietary element requirements for optimum health. It is the responsiblity of the Union Medical Service to determine and advise Union Health Department of them.