Element of the Month May: Nickel

Our Element of the Month cannot be destroyed or created. It is known by the symbol Ni and atomic number 28: we are talking about nickel.

Nickel is found in many everyday objects. For example, it is used as an active material in lithium-ion batteries and can therefore be found in smartphones and electric vehicles. It is primarily used in the chemical industry and mechanical engineering, as well as in household items such as cutlery and stainless steel sinks. As a thin layer, nickel also serves as corrosion protection or as a substrate for a thin layer of chromium in faucets and fittings.

As a trace element for humans, the role of nickel is controversial and it is not yet clear what functions nickel has for the human body. It is assumed that nickel is involved in carbohydrate metabolism and iron utilization. The nickel content in a person’s body is about 1mg. Depending on the consumption of certain foods, the value may be correspondingly higher. The daily requirement is given as 25-30 μg, the tolerable intake is < 8 μg/kg.
Foods such as soy, chocolate, nuts, cereals and many vegetables are considered to be particularly rich in nickel.

Nickel is known as a potent allergen. Inhalation of nickel dust can lead to allergic and inflammatory processes. Nickel is also carcinogenic – especially the nasal and paranasal sinuses as well as the bronchial tract are affected by the inhalation of nickel particles. However, nickel poisoning is rather rare and the symptoms are non-specific. For example, severe headaches and nausea occur.

Our product recommendations on the topic:

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