I have noticed questions with either of these tags, but rarely used together. As far as I know, the difference here is marginal, if any and so

I would suggest to either synonymize these two, or get rid of one of them while they are not both all over the place.

For reference, is used 3x less than , 3 vs 9. Only one question uses both.

  • 1
    I don't get why somebody downvoted this question.. it seems quite useful to me.
    – Attilio
    Feb 6, 2017 at 3:59
  • 2
    @EasterlyIrk what is one that is not the other?
    – djechlin
    Feb 6, 2017 at 8:46
  • @djechlin I'm honestly not sure what to do, after thinking about it I'd be in favor of covering all specific nutrients under either the [nutrition] or a new [nutrients] tag.
    – Riker
    Feb 6, 2017 at 15:18
  • If that is the way we would go, then I am in favor of [nutrients] as opposed to [nutrition] as the former seems to me more semantically correct regarding the subject. Feb 6, 2017 at 15:32
  • @AlexanderRossa 2 things: 1. best not to add answers for viewpoints you oppose, it rarely turns out well (just a word of caution, you haven't said you're going to do that). 2. they might well be different things, if [nutrients] would refer to specific nutrients and [nutrition] in general.
    – Riker
    Feb 6, 2017 at 15:33
  • 1. Yes, I realized that is not the way to go and so I won't be making the answers to vote on, I guess this can be solved in comments as well. 2. Yes, I realize [nutrition] is a valid tag in itself, I am in favor of [nutrients] for being an umbrella term for the [micronutrients] and [vitamins-and-minerals] Feb 6, 2017 at 15:35
  • @EasterlyIrk nutrition includes things like, "Should I have two big meals and one small meal a day." Nutrients is quite different. I think nutrients is fine but there is a weak argument to separate micros from macros.
    – djechlin
    Feb 6, 2017 at 15:37
  • @djechlin yes, that's what I said.
    – Riker
    Feb 6, 2017 at 15:38
  • @AlexanderRossa also, I don't get pinged if you don't @-ping me, but you do because it's your post. I did read your comment, but just for future reference.
    – Riker
    Feb 6, 2017 at 15:38
  • @EasterlyIrk Thanks, I will ping you from now on :). Nice summarization in an answer, we'll see what community decides. Feb 6, 2017 at 15:44

3 Answers 3


I've suggested the synonym and you may vote on it here if you have enough points on the tag


Yes, add as a synonym of

1. They're the same thing.

In the context of nutrition, these tags mean exactly the same thing. All vitamins and minerals are micronutrients, and all micronutrients are classified as either vitamins or minerals.

Some minerals like silica have no nutritional value for humans, but this site is about food not rocks so when we say minerals we're clearly talking about minerals for nutrition.

This is further demonstrated by the tag wiki for micronutrients that describes exactly two categories: vitamins and minerals.

2. The word "micronutrient" doesn't work well for us.

Vitamins and minerals are words that are much more recognizable to people who haven't read deeply about nutrition. A quick look at Google Trends shows that vitamin is searched far, far more often (like 100x more) than micronutrient. In fact, we should probably avoid using the word micronutrient to improve searchability of posts on the site.

Google Trends comparison shows vitamin 85 and micronutrient 1

Vote here: https://vegetarianism.stackexchange.com/tags/vitamins-and-minerals/synonyms


Possibly synonymize them, but maybe make a [nutrients] tag?

Micronutrients are not exactly equal to vitamins and minerals, though they are a bit of a subset.

Micronutrients are defined as:

a chemical element or substance required in trace amounts for the normal growth and development of living organisms.


Note the "trace amounts".

Vitamins & minerals are defined as:

vitamins are organic substances (made by plants or animals), minerals are inorganic elements that come from the soil and water and are absorbed by plants or eaten by animals


I'm not meaning either of these to be full exhaustive authoritative definitions, but I do believe they're pretty darn good ones.

What's the difference between the two? One of the only two differences I see is the "chemical element or substance" vs "organic substance..., inorganic substance". However, these are pretty much two ways to say the same thing.

The other is a bit more complicated. The "trace amounts" part. As I understand it, this means that all micronutrients are vitamins or minerals that are just needed in small amounts.

As such, I'd be in favor of synonymizing with , but it might also be a good idea to make a brand-shiny-new tag.

We already have a tag, but that may end up being for nutrition in general as opposed to specific .

Also note:

Proteins are essential nutrients for the human body.


Fat also supplies the body with energy. It contains more energy than any other nutrient


Carbohydrates are energy-providing nutrients.


These are the 3 things currently covered under . All of them are, well, macro-nutrients, and I'd be in favor of also synonymizing this tag with . However, we may also want separate tags for , possible , and / if they become common enough.

  • 1
    I like the idea of [protein], [fat], and [carbohydrates] tags. Feb 6, 2017 at 15:43
  • 1
    @AlexanderRossa that might end up being it's own meta Q, but let's see how this one works out first.
    – Riker
    Feb 6, 2017 at 15:44
  • I don't agree that we need a [nutrients] tag - meta tags are usually not very helpful and I feel that tag would not help to define the subject of a post.
    – Zanna Mod
    Feb 7, 2017 at 6:32
  • 1
    Can you provide an example of a vitamin or mineral that is not a micronutrient?
    – Nic
    May 9, 2018 at 22:38

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