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Zinc: How important is it to Human Health?

zinc deficiency and sources of zinc

Zinc is one of the most important minerals for our body. It plays an important role in the production of our cells and benefits our immune system greatly. Some people have noted it is just as important in preventing or treating colds and the flu as Vitamin C. Zinc is produced by the body, mainly in our cells, but also in our skin and kidneys. It’s also produced in the glands and eyes. Zinc helps regulate the growth and development of our body, lowers blood pressure, strengthens bones, promotes hair growth, speeds up the healing process, builds up skin cells to fight off disorders such as acne, strengthens the prostate, aids in the reproduction system, and increases our energy levels.

Zinc Deficiency

Known to be one of the more common forms of malnutrition worldwide, zinc deficiency in human beings in places where more cereal than meat consumption takes place. Our bodies produce zinc naturally in cell tissue to produce healthy cells, so it acts as a natural antioxidant. Those most likely to suffer zinc deficiency include: infants, children, elderly, and pregnant women. All of these groups have a need for an increase in zinc due to their physical needs, which causes them to run the greatest risk of deficiency.

A lack of zinc deficiency results in a lack of overall growth, along with gastrointestinal, central nervous, immune and reproductive problems. For adolescents, zinc is needed the most during their puberty period. Pregnant women especially need zinc to assist in the growth of the unborn baby. The elderly are often lacking in zinc because of a decrease in zinc absorption due to age. Infants need a continuous supply of zinc for their developmental. The best source of zinc for infants is in breast milk.


If you suffer from a number of diseases, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, or a weak immune system, Zinc can be taken to treat these diseases. Zinc can also be taken to prevent cancer, especially prostate cancer. Zinc is also beneficial to the eyes. If you have night blindness, Zinc is known to improve the retina and treat night blindness. Zinc helps promote a healthy digestive system. It helps the digestive system efficiently absorb minerals and nutrients. One huge benefit of zinc is that it acts as an anti-inflammatory agent that can help reduce the onslaught of free radicals in the system. Free radicals are basically abnormal cells that attach to normal cells in your body that can produce chronic diseases like cancer, and it can slow down the aging process. Zinc is also beneficial in reversing heart disease.

Zinc Foods

As you can see, zinc is very beneficial to the normal function of our bodies. In order to maintain a healthy amount of zinc, only small doses are needed. Foods high in protein contain the highest levels of zinc. Including these foods in your diet can greatly increase zinc levels in your body. Beside the zinc our body produces, it is found in meats, nuts, and whole wheat grains to name a few food-based sources. Here is a list of specific foods with zinc in it.

  • Lamb
  • Beef
  • Chickpeas
  • Cashews
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Yogurt
  • Chicken
  • Turkey
  • Eggs
  • Mushrooms
  • Salmon
  • Cocoa Powder

If you don’t care for any of these foods, there are supplements available that contain zinc. The vitamin can be taken on a daily basis per instructions. Certain supplements are designed to provide the much-needed enzymes and minerals for your body that Zinc contains. One last benefit most people may not have known and will greatly appreciate is that zinc can help you lose weight. Along with a consistently proper diet and an exercise routine, zinc can help you lose those pounds and maintain your weight.

Ingredients in Supplements

The main ingredient in zinc supplements is zinc, but there are other ingredients that are beneficial.
Betaine HCL promotes the digestive system by producing stomach acid. It also helps those with respiratory problems. Gentian Lutea Root produces stomach juices in the stomach to aid the digestive system, fights inflammation, and helps promote proper digestion. It also reduces fevers. Ginger aids the digestive system by stabilizing the stomach and reducing inflammation.

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