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Why it is Important to ingest Zinc?!

Updated: Feb 29

  • Zinc is an essential mineral, it is found in small amounts in the earth's crust. In food, it is most often found in foods of animal origin, and less in foods of plant origin. It is very important for the functioning of the whole organism, and since the organism does not synthesize it, we must take it in through food and supplements, especially in the winter.

Zinc is found in the body in small quantities, about 2 or 3 grams. But because of that, even a small deficit is felt by the organism. Zinc participates in many processes in the body. To name some important roles of zinc to understand how important it is to us:

It participates in protein synthesis, thus stimulating mental and physical growth and development.

  • Contributes to the strengthening of immunity and resistance of the organism, reduces the possibility of colds. Vitamin A promotes the resorption of zinc, and in combination with vitamin C it is an excellent choice for preventing colds.

  • In the brain, it acts as a modulator and has calming effects, thus the deficiency causes nervousness, depression, poor concentration, poor memory…

  • It is significant for the regulation of hormones, so it is very significant to take it in the reproductive period of both women and men because it affects the secretion of testosterone and sperm motility. It is also essential for the proper growth and development of the baby. Recent research proves that sufficient zinc intake in pregnancy reduces the risk of premature birth.

  • It prevents hair loss and makes the skin fresh and healthy. The deficiency can also be the reason for the appearance of dandruff, hair loss, cracking and flaking of the nails.

  • As a strong antioxidant, it is essential for eye health.

  • It is an integral part of the skeletal system, so it is very important to take it at menopause because it reduces the risk of osteoporosis. It is significant to note here that Zinc and Calcium should be taken separately because it will be better absorbed, while, say, vitamin C accelerates the resorption of zinc.

  • Accelerates wound healing, tissue regeneration, helps with burns and after surgical interventions.

  • Zinc is an essential mineral, which means that the body does not synthesize it on its own, and how much of it we have in the body is directly related to our diet. Foods rich in zinc are: Red meat, especially beef, lamb and liver, milk and dairy products, it is also found in wheat, corn, cabbage, beans, peanuts, walnuts, almonds, and pumpkin and sunflower seeds. It is interesting that it contains 2 mg in breast milk, which is exactly the daily need of a baby. Also, intake of large amounts of caffeine and nicotine can be the reason for zinc deficiency.

How to recognize zinc deficiency and what symptoms should we react to?

  • Weak immunity, frequent respiratory infections.

  • Exhaustion and chronic fatigue

  • Difficult wound healing and skin changes, hypersensitivity to pain, retention of bruises for several days.

  • Harder to adapt to the dark.

  • Taste disorder, loss of appetite and frequent nausea, weight loss.

  • Frequent nervous tension, nervousness, poor concentration, poor memory and forgetfulness.

  • Frequent diarrhea and nervous bowels.

  • Hair loss and dandruff, nails are brittle and easily cracked and flaky.

  • The skin is dry and dehydrated.

Zinc should be taken as a preventive measure in the spring and during the winter, when the exposure to viruses is increased, at a time of greater effort and exposure to stress. Of course, it is obligatory to add it in case of deficit. Toxic doses of Zinc are 150-500 mg per day, which you will agree is difficult to achieve, and I would point out the recommended doses by age.

  • Children up to 12 months: 2-3 mg

  • Children from 1 to 3 years: 3 mg

  • Children from 4 to 8 years: 5 mg

  • Children from 9 to 13 years: 8 mg

  • Girls from 14 to 18 years: 9 mg

  • Boys aged 14 – 18: 11 mg

  • Adult women: 8 mg

  • Adult males: 11 mg

  • Pregnant women: 11 mg

  • Breastfeeding: 12 mg

Zinc is not taken together with tetracyclines (Doxycycline and Amikacin) and with levothyroxine (Tivoral, Euthirox, Letrox) because it binds to them and reduces the resorption of these drugs. Its use with immunosuppressants and corticosteroids is contraindicated. The choice of preparations is large, I would like to point out some, and you decide which one suits you best. At the pharmacy, pharmacists can help you make an easy decision and choose the preparation you need.

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