The 234 foods of the FDA's Total Diet Study were collected four times per year form mid-1982 to mid-1984 and analyzed for 11 essential minerals. Daily intakes of the minerals were estimated for eight age-sex groups of the U.S. population. Levels of calcium, magnesium, iron, zinc, copper, and manganese were low (less than 80% of the RDA or below the low end of the Estimated Safe and Adequate Daily Dietary Intake range) for some or all age-sex groups. Those most at risk of low intakes were young children, teenage girls, adult women, and older women. Non-discretionary sodium intake exceeded the upper Estimated Safe and Adequate Daily Dietary Intake range for two age-sex groups, and iodine was considerably above the RDA for all age-sex groups. Levels of potassium, phosphorus, and selenium were adequate for all groups.